A 2021 Outstanding Science Trade Books
A Junior Library Guild selection
“Clever…beguiling….Readers age 11 and older are likely to finish this book feeling both persuaded and uplifted. Beauty has a way of doing that.”—Wall Street Journal
“A marine biologist warns of the impact of “invasive” plastics on the ocean environment … presenting a solid introduction to the science and a clear call to action.”—Horn Book Magazine
“A cleverly conceived and comprehensive introduction to a serious issue.”—Kirkus Reviews
“This imaginative guide to ocean plastics pollution … helps readers identify and understand this new invasive species….[an] important book.”—Omnilibros
“While the subject is serious, Plasticus Maritimus is an upbeat read sure to inspire positive action in children and adults alike.”—Hakai Magazine
“A lively, informative, but also rather scary book that you can absolutely share with your 12-year-old, as well as with a like-minded friend or parent.”—Meridian Star
“With beautiful illustrations, easy to understand explanations and a lot to say on the subject, this comprehensive guide to the most invasive man-made species will leave the readers horrified. I grew increasingly sick, and by the end of it, I was committed to hunt down, reduce, erase, and hopefully eradicate the problem once and for all.”—GeekDad
“Plasticus Maritimus belongs in every middle school! It’s a book that carries its message within the pages literally and figuratively, as well as beyond. The cardboard binding is both beautiful and necessary. As Plasticus Maritimus shows us, the future of book production, like so many other industries, has to be earth-friendly.”—MaryAnn Cappiello, Ed.D., Lesley University
“Plasticus Maritimus is truly a pivotal book of our time. Ana’s journey to specializing on this topic mirrors many and especially youth we meet all over the world. I can’t imagine a better 'field guide' will ever be made that explains the problem, offers alternatives and provides a clear call to action. Bravo Ana!” —Adrian Midwood, Executive Director, Plastic Oceans Canada
“I loved this book for so many reasons! There are bright, colourful pictures that draw the reader in. The book is easy to understand and fun to read, but still gives very important information about this new invasive species “Plasticus martimus.” I think this book should be in every class for all kids of all ages.”—Mason Vander Ploeg of Mason’s Ocean, Junior Plastics Oceans Ambassador and London Drugs recycling ambassador
Ocean plastic threatens our world.
Pêgo, a marine biologist, has been documenting and collecting plastic from seashores for years. She gave it a scientific name, Plasticus maritimus, in 2015. In this comprehensive introduction, she explains and describes the problems plastics create in the oceans and other waterways. (The text, co-written with Minhós Martins, is presented in Pêgo’s first-person singular.) After an opening chapter about the importance of oceans, she provides a “field guide” to this invasive species, explaining what it is and why and how it is made, used, and discarded. She offers examples, both common and unusual, and tells her young readers how to look for it themselves. A third section offers sensible suggestions for what we can do to rethink, refuse, reduce, repair, reuse, and recycle to reduce the amount of plastic in our oceans. She devotes a final chapter to the difficulties of recycling this complex material. In conclusion, there are photographs of plastics found on beaches and a sculpture of a whale skeleton she created from it. (Her Facebook page includes more examples of her art, an activity that would probably appeal to young plastic collectors.) Ably translated from the Portuguese original by Springer, who also provided North American content, this text is not easy to read or think about, but confident, concerned readers will find it full of solid, useful information. Carvalho’s colored-pencil sketches as well as photographs enliven the pages.
A cleverly conceived and comprehensive introduction to a serious issue. (sources and resources) (Nonfiction. 10-16)