George, Jean Craighead Galapagos George, illustrated by Wendell Minor. PICTURE BOOK. Harper, 2014. $16. Content G.
By the time Galapagos George was discovered on a lonely island, two other species of tropical turtles had already been made extinct and George was the last of his species - not a single other has ever been found. What this book really made we realize is that our use of the word “extinct” is completely wrong. Extinct needs to be a verb, not just a noun. Right now we use “became extinct”, which is a passive use and allows us to deny responsibility. What we as humans actually do is “extinct” the animals directly by our behaviors. Kind of like “murder” or “extermination”. I am not sorry for my rant - I loved that this short picture book made me think so deeply. Don’t let political correctness keep this out of your library. Help students to responsibility for the environmental consequences of irresponsible human behavior.
EL - ESSENTIAL. Cindy, Library Teacher