NONFICTION

One Earth: People of Color Protecting Our Planet

Orca. Apr. 2020. 208p. pap. $24.95. ISBN 9781459818866.
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Gr 5-8–The author, a Canadian-born conservation biologist of Indian and Indigenous descent, uses her background as a source of knowledge and strength to defend Earth from harmful and destructive practices. Rao highlights 20 other people of color who are actively working to protect or restore various parts of the environment—wildlife, soil, water quality, forests, and other elements. Each person explains how their identity (race, language, culture, etc.) gives them a strong knowledge or background to address their environmental issue. The text mentions several Indigenous people from North and South America working to protect Native land and waters. By profiling 20 people in less than 200 pages, the book is a little choppy. There are few transitions between people and categories. Some biographies abruptly end, leaving the reader to wonder if the person has been successful or not. Nonetheless, it is refreshing to read of these activists’ enthusiasm and determination to change our physical world for the better.
VERDICT For larger libraries or libraries looking to expand their potential career offerings, this is a good choice to show how anyone can defend our world.

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