Book Review: What Starts Here Stops Here

cover of what starts here stops here, drawing of robin flying over glasgow

“A gallus wee Glesga robin is blown off-course by an unseasonal gale onto a rollercoaster flight of discovery in the Dear Green Place.”

There are important books that make for grim or difficult reading. What Starts Here Stops Here: A Tale of Glasgow and the World is not one of them. It is a book of urgent importance, but it is also a joy to read. Combining the incantatory writing of babs nicgriogair and the glorious artwork of Annabel Wright, it is presented as a children’s book, and it is that — but it is a children’s book for adults, and also an adults’ book for children, showing the history of Glasgow, and of the racism, classism, capitalism and arrogant human exceptionalism that has brought the world to its present (and likely final) crisis.

Told from the perspective of a time-travelling robin who meets James Watt, Angus Smith, and “the Birdman of Pollok” Colin MacLeod, as well as interacting with Glasgow’s murals, this short, huge, beautiful book not only diagnoses our societal disease and its causes, but gently points the way to health.

#ScottishBooks #ScottishWriting #ScottishArt #anthropocene #glasgow #ClimateCrisis #BabsNicgriogairAuthor #AnnabelWrightArtist

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