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PRECIOUS PLANET by Emmanuelle Figueras


A User's Manual for Curious Earthlings

by Emmanuelle Figueras ; illustrated by Alexandre Verhille & Sarah Tavernier

Pub Date: Sept. 30th, 2019
ISBN: 978-3-89955-837-1
Publisher: Little Gestalten

Explaining the workings of our planet through the metaphor of a house in which all parts are connected, this oversized import argues for its protection.

This graphically striking overview presents Earth from its beginnings as “a construction site” whose building took nearly 40 million years. Spread by spread and room by room, the French creators describe such things as the “security system” of Earth’s magnetic shield; the running fresh water and “bathroom” of seas and oceans; and the “greenhouse” of habitats and their plants. The textile industry is consigned to the “closet,” and our trash, compost, and medication to a “utility room.” Tectonic plates make up the first floor; the continents are living rooms. Humans and animals are equally “the roommates” as the creators take on both income inequality and endangered species. They even speculate about “vacation homes”—exploring and perhaps inhabiting other planets. The conceit makes a fine container for many facets of earth science, ecology, and conservation issues, and the author has based his statements on recent and generally accepted science theories. Large graphic panels are shaped, numbered, and colored to help readers make their ways through the text, which, sadly, is often set in white, sometimes very small print, as in a previous title from this trio, Recordmania (2018). The humans shown vary in age and skin tone.

Fact-packed and thought-provoking with an intriguing design, a colorful reminder of “our beautiful home.” (glossary, index) (Nonfiction. 8-14)