Monday, August 11, 2008

Monday's green books series: 'Planet Earth Gets Well' by Madeline Kaplan (and a copy giveaway)

Many of us think of Planet Earth in terms of Mother. Author Madeline Kaplan sees it as child. And this child feels sick in her new children's book 'Planet Earth Gets Well', which is our book today on Monday's green books series.

So what's wrong with Planet Earth? "I have a runny nose. My ice caps are melting; and no matter what I do, I can't stop them from running into the ocean." This is just one of the environmental problem he is describing in the book (including high fever because his tempreture rises), which is formed in a way of dialogue between the child Planet Earth and his mother, who is no other than Mother Nature.

Mother Nature's diagnosis is very clear: "you have a bad case of global warming". She cares about her son's health and therefore tries to instruct him how to take better care of himself and gives him advice how his people (us..) should behave to take his temperature down.
There are three main things I like about the book:

1. The basic idea of Planet Earth as a child that doesn't feel well and asks his mom, Mother Nature, for advice. Somehow it seems to me that it fits reality much better than any other metaphoric description of Planet Earth.

2. The positive educational spirit of the book - this book aims to help young readers to think proactively about their environment. It gives children educational information about 'heavy stuff' such as global warming, energy depletion and deforestation, and at the same time stays optimistic and tries to show them that it's not too late to make Planet Earth feel better.

3. The illustrations are great. Taillefer Long's full color beautiful illustrations make it a vivid and attractive book for children.

This is Kaplan's first children's book and I enjoyed it very much. It is an intelligent children's tale that tries to give kids facts and explain concepts which are not that easy to explain to them (and sometimes not even to adults), but also tries to keep it fun and entertaining, as much as a story about a sick Planet Earth can be.

The bottom line is that children can identify with the poor little fellow and understand that they can make him feel better by doing little things -for example, "they could save trees in the forest by using less paper". This is an easy lesson and I'm sure many children will get it right. If their parents will understand and implement it as well, then there's a much better chance that Planet Earth will eventually get better.

Book details:

Book's name: Planet Earth Gets Well
Author: Madeline Kaplan
Taillefer Long
BookSurge Publishing
Publication Date: April 20, 2008
The book is available on

And this book is also going green with Eco-Libris: As we announced earlier, the author, Madeline Kaplan, is working now with Eco-Libris to green up the book - a tree will be planted for every copy sold at the book signing events and at other promotional sales. Readers who will buy the book on these events will also receive our sticker with their book, saying "One tree planted for this book".

Author Madeline Kaplan will be giving away a copy of the book, and it also comes with a tree that will be planted for it with us and our sticker of course.

How you can win? please add a comment below with an answer the following question: what do you think children can do to make Planet Earth feel better, and what would be the best way for them to convince their parents to join them? if you have any personal stories of your own kids, please share! Submissions are accepted until Saturday, August 18, 12PM EST. The winner will be announced the following day.