Thompson, Colin. Tower to the Sun. Knopf, 1996. ISBN 0-679-98334-1. $18.99. Unpaginated. C 3+ PB Reviewed by Vicky M. Turner “Once upon a time, if you stood on the moon and looked down on earth, you could see the Great Wall of China.” So begins this book about pollution. If you live on the moon two thousand years in the future, all that can be seen of the earth will be a “never-ending mask of yellow mist. Like a pale copy of the sun, soft and blurred at the edges, the tired planet sat alone in the vastness of space.” The beginning sentences are pleasant and have an agreeable sound, but for me the book went downhill as steadily as the tower went up. The pictures are dark. (What do you expect from a polluted planet?) The story details one man's dream-seeing the sun again. No mention is made of trying to clean up the planet. This dreamer only dreams of climbing through the clouds of pollution. He tries various methods of getting above the clouds and finally succeeds in building a tower. He uses giant machines, similar to the ones that caused the original pollution, but only ends up adding to the problem. He builds his tower by uprooting famous landmarks and stacking them one upon another. From the moment he feels the warmth of the sun on his face, a line begins to form, a line of “dimwits”(my term, not the author's) who would rather stand around and wait than try to make the planet better. I just wasn't impressed with this pollution book.
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