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*****= An all-time favorite
****  = Outstanding
***    = Above average
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*        = Good, with reservations


****Earth from Above

365 Days

by Yann Arthus-Bertrand

Reviewed February 18, 2004.
Harry N. Abrams, 2001.  744 pages.
Available on for $20.97 in hardcover.
Available at Sembach Library (779 ART).

The Earth From Above:  365 Days is an astonishing and dazzling book.  It features photos by Yann Arthus-Bertrand taken all over the world from the air.  Every picture is either stunningly beautiful or striking in some other way.  We have a world of amazing and mind-boggling variety, and this book showed me out-of-the way corners I’d never dreamed of.

This book is set up to see one picture per day, and I would love to own a copy and go through a year with it.  Unfortunately, since I was reading the library’s copy, I had to settle for a month or so at a time.  Every time I looked at the book, I was filled with awe.

The text accompanying each picture explains where the picture was taken and facts about it.  There’s an environmental bent to the text, though it’s given in the form of simple facts.  For example, on the page next to a picture of a whale’s fluke, part of the text says, “Numbers have now stabilized, but the populations are still not sufficiently large to exclude all danger of extinction.  There are only a few thousand of each species, 10 to 60 times fewer than was estimated at the beginning of the twentieth century.”  A page opposite a picture of the Australian coast says, “About 20 percent of the reef’s coral has been damaged by growing numbers of a species of starfish, a fierce predator.  In fact, almost all the world’s coral is in poor health, which is gradually leading to a loss of biodiversity in the surrounding waters—a process similar to desertification on land.”

I highly recommend this book as one that would be well-worth owning, or at least checking out from the library.  The photographs will leave you amazed, and at the same time you’ll learn a wide variety of facts about the world and its people.

Reviews of other books by Yann Arthus-Bertrand:
Earth from Above
The Future of the Earth

Copyright © 2004 Sondra Eklund.  All rights reserved.

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