Thursday, May 27, 2010

May 27th - Rachel Carson was born on this day in 1907

I have to confess that I didn't know much about Rachel Carson until I moved to the United States in 1992. Since then I have read and been inspired by her books. Here is a review of a book that I read this week.

Rachel Carson: Preserving a sense of wonder
Joseph Bruchac
Illustrated by Thomas Locker
Nonfiction picture book
Ages 6 to 10
Fulcrum Publishing, 2004, 978-1-55591-695-4
When Rachel was a little girl, she lived in Springdale, Pennsylvania, “a town once as lovely as its name.” She had a deep love of books, and through them she developed a interest in the sea. Though writing was what she loved, Rachel studied biology in college. She finally got to see the sea in person and she fell in love with its moods and its stories. Later Rachel wrote about the sea in her first book, Under the Sea-Wind.
   All this time Rachel’s once lovely hometown in Pennsylvania, was being poisoned. The rivers were filthy, “the air was choked with smoke,” and poisonous agricultural sprays were killing animals of all kinds. Hearing about this terrible development, Rachel decided to write a new book. This new book, Silent Spring, angered a lot of people, but it also helped many others to see that it is important to protect the environment, and that we all have to do our part to safeguard our planet.
   In this truly beautiful picture book, a lyrical and powerful text is perfectly married to Thomas Locker’s gorgeous paintings. Readers will get a memorable picture of what Rachel Carson was like and how important her legacy has been for all of us. 

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