The Books

The Tower to the Sun

by Colin Thompson

Hardcover, pages

Published by Knopf Books for Young Readers (1997-04-07)

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Amazon Description

One hundred years in the future, when the earth is so polluted that the sun can't be seen, the richest man in the world wants his grandson to experience the blue sky and orange sun he remembers from his childhood. So he spends 20 years and all of his money  to build a tower to the sun. Using the largest rock in the world as the foundation, workers pile stone upon stone, beam over beam, building atop building, until the old man sits on top of the tower with his great grandson and feels the warmth of the sun shine on his face. Though now penniless, he is indeed, a rich man. Lush with the intricate detail that has become his hallmark, Colin Thompson's art invites repeated examination and yields its secrets subtly. His tower is an extraordinary pastiche of architectural prototypes from Stonehenge, Greek temples and the leaning tower of Pisa to the Chrysler Building and the Guggenheim Museum. This is Thompson's most provocative pictorial fantasy to date--and a moving fable for the environmentally conscious of all ages.  

One Potato Review

Grim and apocalyptic, with scarcely a consolation in sight; you can see why this book didn’t stick around (it was published in 1997) or wasn’t adapted by Disney, but that’s okay. Here is an already fully imagined picture of the future, where not only is the earth’s surface invisible from other worlds, but even earth’s people are barely visible through the buildings. Everything else is unthinkably complicated architecture (Disney could not have done better), and one man’s determination to show his grandson (and his grandson’s grandson) how the sky used to look way back when Al Gore was giving PowerPoint presentations. A fanciful, sometimes magnificent, artistic accomplishment, and a louder, clearer wake-up call for anyone who likes to hit the snooze.   

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