This rousing paperback is part of the "Take It Personally" series. Entrepreneur and activist Anita Roddick presents a helpful and scary overview of the global water crisis which grows worse every day. Proceeds from this work will help support grassroots groups, non-governmental organizations, and individuals who are trying to address this problem.

Here are some of the facts in bold form:

• One billion people worldwide have no access to clean water within a 15-minute walk of their homes.

• 25 million people die each year from contaminated water (that's the equivalent of the entire population of Canada.)

• 1.4 billion people lack access to clean drinking water.

• Americans empty 2.5 million plastic water bottles an hour. Each one takes 500 years to decompose if not recycled.

• The average American home uses 293 gallons of water a day, the average African family used 5 gallons of water a day.

Water is one of the major business opportunities of the twenty-first century and giant corporations such as Coca-Cola, Pepsi, and Nestle own many bottled water brands. The ancient ideal of water as a commons is on its way out as water privatization by large corporations and governments increases. In an essay included in the book, Vandana Shive, author of Water Wars, exposes six myths of privatization: "As natural rights, water rights are usufructuary rights: water can be used but not owned. People have a right to life and therefore to the resources that sustain it, including water. That is why governments and corporations cannot alienate people of their water rights. Water rights come from nature and creation. They flow from the laws of nature, not from the rules of the market."

Be sure to read "Water for All," a declaration from Public Citizen. Then ponder and act on "Watering the Grassroots: Some Solutions" by Dame Anita Roddick.