Thursday, April 22, 2010


Earth Day: Not Your Typical Book About the Environment

by Elin Kelsey

This book starts from the premise that most books about the environment are depressing - heavy, doomsaying, guilt-inducing, and laying the onus squarely on the reader to fix it. Yikes. From there, it promises to inform and inspire hope rather than horror.

She goes on to talk about a lot of factors that affect the environment and a lot of the problems that we are seeing. A lot of the information centres around our lifestyles and how they impact the world, showing the ripple effects that we have on the planet.

As promised, though, she looks at many sides of each issue, as well as areas where research is showing new promise for future improvements. In some cases, this this means she shows the flaws in things we believe are answers, but she always points out several pros and cons, making the book more about information and choices than about lessons.

The book is text-heavy and densely packed with information, as it is a non-fiction book for kids in middle grades (I'd say grades 4-8), but the tone is light and conversational, making it a surprisingly easy read.

A great gift for a curious or environmentally conscious kid, or a starting point for doing a project or making a change, I recommend this one as a great way to start learning about earth and what we can do to help her out.

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