Book Love is our book review series, where I talk about books, new and old, that I love! The Encyclopedia of Early Earth by Isabel Greenberg was a beautiful journey, and I’d like to take you through exactly why!
The Encyclopedia of Early Earth by Isabel Greenberg
There was a world, a civilisation, before ours, that has been forgotten. All that is left are fables and stories. Isabel Greenberg takes us through each and every funny, sad and moving story, delving into the quests and adventures of the Nord man.
This story begins with two lovers, the Nord man and the South Pole woman, who despite their true love for each other, cannot physically touch. So the Nord man tells the South Pole woman stories; of his life, his adventures and how they found each other. Many of the fables and stories may sound like something you’ve heard before. In fact there’ll be some you definitely have. But in Isabel Greenberg’s world, it usually comes with a twist.
The book is full of bold and intriguing characters. From volatile, whimsical and fickle gods to selfishly curious shamans. One of my favourite characters from The Encyclopedia of Early Earth is the Wise Old Crone. With her well-earned stubborness and devilish wit, she’s an icon for the masses!
Whimsical and Imaginative
The illustration style is handdrawn and primitive, but vastly detailed and imaginative. As we make our way through the seamless connection of stories, there is a consistent black and white theme, with a flourish of primary colours throughout. With a world of beasts, animals and creatures that could give even Fantastic Beasts a run for its money, The Encyclopedia of Early Earth is a treasure trove for the curious-minded.
I personally loved the simplistic style of language Isabel Greenberg used. It is lighthearted and knowing, which helps you connect with the characters and their stories. The stories told in this way also feels, at times, strangely real. The Encyclopedia of Early Earth is an epic book with equally epic stories, told in a heart warming way. It was a much-needed breath of fresh air.