The Story of the Blue Planet by Andri Snaer Magnason

A children’s fiction pick by Jean-Louis

blueplanet(Original publication in Icelandic 1999;  English translation Seven Stories Press 2012)

For 2014 our library has challenged our readers to broaden their reading, to try new genres, or to rediscover the kinds of reading they may not always choose to read. One of the squares is a challenge to read a book classified as for Children or Young Adults. Many YA books are grabbing the attention of adults. We can think of the Harry Potter books and also of the great Vampire series, but to reach beyond into the youth section also reveals gems.

The Story of the Blue Planet, originally written in Icelandic, is a real breath of fresh air. The story is charming, efficient, and like most great kids’ books, it is downright funny. Only kids live on the blue planet–no adults. But as the author points out “The blue planet was beautiful, but also a dangerous place. Each day was so full of danger and excitement that no grown-ups could have lived there without getting gray hair and withering away from stress and worry.”

What is life like on a planet with only kids living on it? What do they eat? What makes them happy and what threats can come along to threaten their world? Magnason does a wonderful job of capturing the innocence and generosity of spirit needed to be a true hero on the blue planet.

Treat yourself to a tour of the blue planet–you will not be disappointed.

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