The checkout line is always littered with magazines beconing me to buy them. For the most part, I’m pretty resilient and I resist. That is until I saw Maranda Pleasant’s Thrive. A Plant-Based magazine of culture, food and lifestyle. Celebrities on the cover that caught my eye were Joaquin Phoenix, Jared Leto and Erykah Badu. Plant-based magazines are so rare that I had to check it out. What I immediately found when I picked it up was that it’s almost like two magazines in one. Along with the cover I was initially drawn to, when I turnned in over and upside down, there was a similar cover with huge close up of Jaoquin’s face. So how does it work? Well, when I started reading from a particular cover, it only took me halfway through the magazine before things started to be upside down.  So I closed it, flipped it over and started from the other side. Interesting concept and a bit strange to me at first, but also clever and not your typical magazine. It’s definitely something that stands out.

Let’s move on to quality. There is a short edgy editor’s letter and a list of who is on the team. I couldn’t find a contributors page. Personally, I like a contributor’s page(even if it’s just a list). It gives props to those people and also lets me know who is out there doing what I support. The interviews are decent. What I did notice is there are no articles. Only interviews and quotes. As a person who actually reads the articles in magazines, it left me a little wanting.

The photography overall is very much on the artsy side. So, you really have to like that sort of thing. I wondered why the article with Joaquin and his sister Summer didn’t have one of them together. They were each shot separately in different settings, so the pictures don’t really meld well.  Nonetheless, they are creative and fun. The idea to have Joaquin interview his sister was a great one. Other interviews included: Erykah Badu, Sharon Lawrence, and Bonnie Raitt. All done by Maranda Pleasant herself. The photos taken for the shark article were by far the best. They were raw and terrifying. Michael Muller(who is credited for other pictures in the magazine) shares from his new book Sharks. He also talks about his passion for helping to reduce their slaughter. I thoroughly enjoyed the section on vegan athletes. It was inspiring to see quotes from such accomplished high performing athletes. They describe how their vegan diet has been such a benefit to their energy, as well as injury recovery!

The flipside of the magazine is primarily recipes. There is a good range from uber healthy meals to treats that satisfy your sweet tooth. Some that I will be trying soon are the Curried Garbonzo Bean Tacos by Dreamy Leaf creator Maya Sozer, the Turmeric Smoothy by Chef Lena Ksanti, creator of Pureveganfood, and Raweos by Taline Gabriel, creator of the food app Hippie Lane. There are many more fabulous featured chefs throughout the recipe section.

Advertising isnt overkill, which is nice.  There are however, some full page ads promoting their other magazines(Origin and Mantra) and inviting in advertisers.

On a whole, I enjoyed reading Maranda Pleasant’s Thrive. I will come back to it again for its recipes and the list of 10 greatest vegan restaurants in the US. The $5.95 cover price was worth it. In a country that is primarily meat/dairy focused, it was refreshing to find Thrive. I am very interested to see what their next issue will include.

Maranda Pleasant is a former artist now rising entrepreneur who wants “us to come together to connect, conspire and build community around compassion for animals, endangered species and habitats, organic nonGMo gourmet food, health and performance and natural beauty”. -quote taken form Thrive website