Go Green! A Young Person's Guide to the Blue Planet by Claudia Myatt
|Go Green! A Young Person's Guide to the Blue Planet by Claudia Myatt|
|Category: Children's Non-Fiction|
|Reviewer: Trish Simpson-Davis|
|Summary: An amusing book that combines environmental awareness with a huge array of fascinating titbits about the blue stuff. I loved it.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 104||Date: December 2009|
|Publisher: Royal Yachting Association|
|External links: Author's website|
Go Green!? Forget that title. What planet does that come from? Let's start again. This fantastic book is about the blue stuff, everything from oceans to raindrops. The book covers just about every angle that a child passionate about water might conceivably find of interest – marine creatures, icebergs, sunken volcanoes, tsunamis, undersea exploration, bores and whirlpools, inland waterways, tides, lochs and locks. There are answers to lots of questions of the Why is the sea blue? variety. Sandwiched into this comprehensive guide to the physical geography and biodiversity of the seas (probably enough for GCSE) is a large dollop of green ketchup, to be sure, but my instinctive reaction is that here is the best children's introduction to 'water' that I've ever seen.
Claudia Myatt has a persuasively warm voice (I've just wasted half an hour reading her blog and following up all the links, which was great for the Arthur Ransome nostalgia but hasn't got the review written). She has a lovely way of putting things for junior-aged readers: clear, jokey, unpatronising. And very clever, even allowing for the dreadful puns. As I've already implied, the green message isn't rammed down innocent young throats. Rather it's demonstrated as the logical conclusion to solve the problems highlighted in the text, such as plastic particles getting into the food chain, household chemicals washing into the sea or spillages from fuel tanks. Hopefully, thinking young people will pass the message on to parents born before global warming got into its stride.
Claudia Myatt is really known as an artist. The illustrations accompanying the text are technically correct representations of boats sailing. What an unusual pleasure! I've whinged before about artists chosen to illustrate nautical books who clearly cannot tell port from starboard. Hooray for Claudia Myatt: no wing and wing sails running against the wind for her, or fleets of dinghies beating hard up the channel with the wind behind them!
I imagine that any sailing child will cherish this book just as much as the others in the RYA series – the rather better described Go Sailing and Go Cruising titles. All of them have received rave reviews from the yachting press. But do have a look at this book even if you're a landlubber, because I think it would make a brilliant present to inspire all those young friends and relations who aren't fortunate enough to have sailing parents.
Now back to Swallows and Amazons, and shiver me timbers, I'm beginning to wonder if Claudia Myatt isn't some relation of Titty ...
I'd like to thank the publishers for sending this book.
Suggestions for further reading:
There's a lot of good stuff around in the Green arena. We liked: Planet In Peril by Anita Ganeri and Mike Phillips (A Horrible Geography Handbook); The Big Green Book by Ian Winton and Fred Pearce and for younger children: 10 Things I Can Do To Help My World by Melanie Walsh.
Or how about: Will Jellyfish Rule the World? by Leo Hickman, or for budding adventurers:
You could shelve Go Green alongside Stories for a Fragile Planet: Traditional Tales About Caring for the Earth by Kenneth Steven and Jane Ray.
For oldies, you could try A Blueprint for a Safer Planet: How We Can Save the World and Create Prosperity by Nicholas Stern.
You can read more book reviews or buy Go Green! A Young Person's Guide to the Blue Planet by Claudia Myatt at Amazon.co.uk Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
You can read more book reviews or buy Go Green! A Young Person's Guide to the Blue Planet by Claudia Myatt at Amazon.com.
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