Brimir and Hulda are best friends who live on a small island on a beautiful blue planet where there are only children and no adults. Their planet is wild and at times dangerous, but everything is free, everyone is their friend, and each day is more exciting than the last.
One day a rocket ship piloted by a strange-looking adult named Gleesome Goodday crashes on the beach. His business card claims he is a “Dream.ComeTrueMaker and joybringer,” and he promises to make life a hundred times more fun with sun-activated flying powder and magic-coated skin so that no one ever has to bathe again. Goodday even nails the sun in the sky and creates a giant wolf to chase away the clouds so it can be playtime all the time. In exchange for these wonderful things, Goodday asks only for a little bit of the children’s youth—but what is youth compared to a lot more fun? The children are so enamored with their new games that they forget all the simple activities they used to love.
During Goodday’s great flying competition, Hulda and Brimir fly too high to the sun and soar to the other side of planet, where they discover it is dark all the time and the children are sickly and pale. Hulda and Brimir know that without their help, the pale children will die, but first they need to get back to their island and convince their friends that Gleesome Goodday is not all that he seems.
A fantastical adventure, beautifully told, unfolds in a deceptively simple tale. The Story of the Blue Planet will delight and challenge readers of all ages.
“Magnason’s writing is lean, swift and often lyrical. . . immensely satisfying — a major contribution to the sparsely populated eco-lit genre, and one that could entice other authors to contribute.”
—The New York Times Book Review
“Magnason’s beautifully illustrated and expertly translated book is charming, eccentric, moving, and humbling – often reminiscent of Roald Dahl or William Steig. It’s a magical coming-of-age story that may also remind adults to appreciate the here and the now, and that the grass on the other side may appear greener, but that doesn’t mean it’s better.”
“It's a delightful and pointed tale. Indeed, The Story of the Blue Planet, aided by Aslaug Jonsdottir's fanciful and evocative illustrations, raises important issues about greed, collaboration, friendship and trust that will kick-start discussions among children and their caretakers. Home and school libraries would do well to add it to their collections.”
“The sound ecological message that is conveyed in The Story of the Blue Planet has justifiably met with widespread international acclaim, with the book having won numerous highly sought-after prizes, and being the first chidren’s book to be awarded the Icelandic Literary Prize."
"Adventurous and entertaining...the illustrations are lovely and offer a visual stimulus for the story.”
—Books for Kids
“Those who enjoyed Adam Gidwitz's A Tale Dark and Grimm (Dutton, 2010) may find Magnason's cautionary ecological tale a perfect compliment. Well-paced, with some wonderful, story-enhancing color illustrations.”
—School Library Journal
From the Hardcover edition.