Humanure & Compost Toilet Handbooks

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The Humanure Handbook  (4th edition)  Shit in a Nutshell - By Joseph Jenkins, May 2019. 300 pages, 91 illustrations, indexed. ISBN-13: 978-0964425880. 6”X9” paperback. $25.00 US

The Compost Toilet Handbook - April 21, 2021. 254 pages, 203 photos and illustrations, 161 color pages, hardcover, ISBN: 978-1-7336035-1-5; Trim Size: 6"x9". $40.00 US 

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The Humanure Handbook 4th Edition won a gold medal in the 2019 Readers' Favorite Awards. Readers' favorite reviewer stated, "This book is a must-have for any library. Trust me." It was also a finalist in the Foreword Magazine Indies Book of the Year Awards in the Nature Category, as well as a Gold Winner in the Science Category.

The Compost Toilet Handbook is an illustrated instructional manual explaining how to make, use, and manage compost toilets, which are waste-free toilets that rely on the biological process of composting to recycle toilet material. It is based on the author’s 40+ years of first-hand experience. The 254-page indexed book has 161 pages of color photos including 203 photos or illustrations from 13 countries where compost toilet systems are in use.  

Score: 5.00 (votes: 5)
Reviews: 5
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Feedback from the Humanure Handbook:

"I just thought I should thank you for your inspirational book. I think it’s pure genius and I will try as best as I can to spread the word."

"This is one of those books that you feel would change the world if only everyone would read it. I wish I could afford to buy the book for everyone on the planet. I for one am grateful to the author, Joseph Jenkins for writing this updated version. I take my hat off to you Joseph. A job well done. What a lot of work you put into this book!"

"Absolutely phenomenal work! You have done such a superb job, I am continually amazed by your impeccable research and wisdom gained from your long and critical user experience. Reclaiming the use of the word compost, which is so widely misused in sanitation circles, seems so key." 

"When I first picked up a copy of the Humanure Handbook, it was out of a sense of obligation—I thought it was going to be a really technical manual about how to deal with our shit. But I was surprised to find it incredibly entertaining -- I actually read it cover to cover and found the entire book completely delightful and totally fascinating. For those that haven’t read this book yet, it is full of great stories and science and history." 

"Joseph writes from practical, hands on knowledge. Experience is they key. Many other authors have tried, but no one can top what Joseph shares. I recommend the book highly to anyone. It’s the future folks, it’s something many people do not like to think about but start thinking soon, if you do not, you will not be prepared."

"I am about to add the 4th edition of The humanure Handbook into our public catalog here at the Cleveland Public Library. While flipping through the book, I was sad to see a depiction of a not-so-pleasant interaction with a librarian in Arizona, and wanted you to know that not all public libraries are so closed to giving their patrons access to a large variety of viewpoints and resources. Please know that Cleveland Public has not only the newest edition of your work (2019), but also the 2005 and 1994 editions. Also, you may be interested to know that the Library of Congress also has some of the editions from the 1990s."

"I read the 4th edition, cover to cover, highlighting main ideas, and thoroughly enjoyed learning the topic. I save all my “deposits“ for my compost, and it feels great to be a dynamic part of the cycle of life, rather than contributing to water waste and water pollution. Thank you, thank you for your invention of this primitive technology toilet.  I love my Lovable Loo, and my Airbnb guests love it too." 

"I started [the Humanure Handbook] with trepidation, but it was one of the most amazing journeys I've ever experienced. Just incredible. I was amazed by the book."

"This book is one of the most fascinating (i know that sounds weird) books I've read in a long time."

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Customer reviews
Average rating:
5.00(Votes: 5)
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  • Apr 18, 2024, 04:24 PM
    I thoroughly enjoyed Humanure Handbook and would recommend it to anyone who is already in need of compost, or who has any concern about the fate of their poo. And even though it was a book about compost, it was entertaining and drew my attention.

    Composting Toilet Handbook was great as well, but I preferred Humanure Handbook as a read. I think Composting Toilet Handbook is an easier read, and better for kids or just to flip through to start the interest. They both definitely have their place.

    Thank you!
  • Oct 10, 2023, 10:01 PM
    Excellent source material for proper composting. If humans can be unconditioned we can save water and produce excellent humus.
  • Aug 29, 2023, 08:25 AM
    Was very excited to receive the books!! Can't wait to use them as an aid to improve community composting. I also feel very lucky to have received Balance Point as a gift. I've already read the first chapter or so - and it's wonderful! Reminds me of my magical adventure books from grade school but also suits my interest in the environment and society.
  • Aug 13, 2022, 10:31 PM
    Both are for everyone absolute "Must Reads"! As industrial Agriculture Runs out of chemical fertilizers, we ALL will need to revert to using this modern version of keeping our fields fertile by using 'night soil'.
    These books tell/show how to do it! [I lived w/ a 'sawdust toilet' in my bedroom for 7 years - they don't smell!!]
  • Jul 31, 2022, 01:06 PM
    I absolutely love Joseph's humanure books. I can't say enough good things. I immediately build my own compost toilet after reading and I am so happy with it. I can't wait for my first batch of compost to finish. I also read The Balance Point, witch(pun intended) was a great motivating story.

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