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Suggested Reading List:

Is there a book that tells you how to create, live in and/or live with a line family? We used to say no. However, with the release of our book, Creating A Line Family in August of 2015 we can say that there is one book that deals factually with the real-world concept of living in a line family.
Creating A Line Family book cover.

In writing this book we interviewed lots of people living in a variety of intentional communities. We talked with several poly families to find out how they manage their households. We spoke with several attorneys about various legal tools that are available to protect individual family members and the family as a whole. We spent a lot of time talking with an actual line family that has been in existence since 1980.

We also researched lots of resource materials that are available regarding group decision making, multigenerational wealth management, real property ownership and management, children, business etc.

We have listed a few good resources below. Just remember Don’t believe everything you read, and Always question authority – even when you agree with it.


Sex at Dawn:
The Prehistoric Origins of Modern Sexuality
By Christopher Ryan, PhD and Cacilda Jethá, MD

At the top of the chart for a polyamory reading list as well as near the top of this line family reading list is Sex At Dawn. It looks at the evidence for how humans lived together from 200,000 years ago until roughly eight- to twelve-thousand years ago when agriculture changed everything. We have been struggling with the changes ever since.
Despite being a “hard-science” book with lots of footnotes and references, it is a fun and easy read for the nonscientist.
Sex At Dawn explains why we think that line-families will work.
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Creating a Life Together: Practical Tools to Grow Ecovillages and Intentional Communities
By Diana Leafe Christian.
Creating A Life Together
We have been asked at conferences if there is a difference between line-families and intentional communities. We say there is, but the line between the two is mighty thin. Much of what makes an intentional community successful works for a line family as well.
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Is It Utopia Yet? An Insider’s View of Twin Oaks Community In Its 26th Year.
By Kat Kinkade
Is It Utopia Yet? by Kat Kinkade
Twin Oaks started in 1967 and is going strong today. This book describes some the trials and tribulations of the first 26 years. This is one model for a working intentional community. In this book you see how things evolve, how management is shared and how power is never concentrated in a person or small subgroup – not even the founders. This is not our ideal of a line family, but there is plenty to learn from Twin Oaks.
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Your Money or Your Life: 9 Steps to Transforming Your Relationship with Money and Achieving Financial Independence:
Revised and Updated for the 21st Century
Your Money Or Your Life
We hesitated including this book on the list because it is, in one sense, a self-help book. But it is mostly an educational book. I think it is fair to say that most people don’t get a good or even adequate education about money. Money is a tool, a belief, a fear, a desire… and so on and so forth. This book describes a new way to view money and your most precious possession – the hours you have left to live.
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Fortune's Children:
The Fall of the House of Vanderbilt

by Arthur T. Vanderbilt, II

At a time when there were only a dozen millionaires in the US, Cornelius Vanderbilt generated a fortune worth $50 million. When he died he passed the entire fortune to his son. His son went on to increase the family wealth dramatically. After the son died, the grandkids spent it all.

Fortune’s Children is a cautionary tale about the mismanagement of wealth and power. Cornelius at least knew not to dilute the family wealth and put it all in the hands of his son who managed it well. This tale supports our distrust of simply dividing family wealth using wills alone. Dividing family wealth - instead of managing it - took down the richest family in the world. How do we expect middle class families to do any better?
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The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress
By Robert Heinlein
The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress by Robert heinlein
A lot of credit for the polyamory movement is given to Heinlein and his book “Stranger In A Strange Land.” However, when I read “…Mistress” the concept of the line family was planted firmly in my brain. If you read one fiction book that includes line-families, read this one.
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