This is Our World


Monique lives in Espiritu Santo, an island in the Vanuatu chain. Her family are farmers of coconut, vanilla and cocoa and keep pigs. While her parents work, she attends school and looks after her younger brothers each day. After school she swims in the ‘lagoons and rivers on the island or in the sea’. Sometimes she sees turtles and dugong. People in the Vanuatu islands speak three major languages, including Bistama, English and French but there are ‘dozens of different languages and dialects’.

Monique is just one of twenty children who feature in This is Our World. We learn of each subject’s life, family, lifestyle and habitat, alongside a geographical snapshot of facts. Every subject features within a glorious, coloured spread of information, labels and incidental, anecdotal pictures from Åsa Gilland.

Bookwagon loves Tracey Turner’s non-fiction books, including Lists for Curious Kids. In collaboration with the wonderful illustrator Åsa Gilland, of The Perfect Shelter, we’ve discovered a triumph. This is Our World is a book to be pored over, learned from, enjoyed, quoted and loved. We recommend it as a gift, and as a title essential to homes and classrooms.

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This is Our World

From Alaska to the Amazon Meet 20 Children Just Like You

Tracey Turner, illustrated by Åsa Gilland

(Macmillan)– hardback

‘Where and however we live, we have many more thinking in common than differences between us’. This is an introductory statement to This is Our World. So where do we live? Tracey Turner and Åsa Gilland open with a map identifying a wealth of different places, people and creatures. Thereafter, we step closer, to meet some of the characters, beginning with Nasima, who lives in a small Bangladeshi island village. She tells us about her family, habitat, beliefs, daily life and challenges, including ‘huge saltwater crocodiles and deadly snakes‘. A fact stamp on a page in the corner gives us more geographical details such as the location of the Sundarbans, their population and the languages spoken.
Åsa Gilland’s pictures are lush and detailed. We are drawn to tracing the information across the double pages to understand more about the life of each person whom we meet.
Like This is How We Do It, a Bookwagon favourite title, This is Our World does not draw upon the most obvious locations. Therefore, we travel from Bangladesh to Cappadocia in Turkey, and then the Alaskan Wilderness. Furthermore, the amount of information is full and the depth and variety so very interesting.
Bookwagon recommends This is Our World to readers and researchers. Its structure and presentation, with its changes of perspective and rich, colourfully formed information, makes this book a triumph.


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