cover image Begin Again: The Story of How We Got Here and Where We Might Go

Begin Again: The Story of How We Got Here and Where We Might Go

Oliver Jeffers. Philomel, $26.99 (112p) ISBN 978-0-593-62155-4

Bestseller Jeffers (Here We Are: Notes for Living on Planet Earth) returns with another contemplative graphic narrative about the need to share the planet compassionately and responsibly. In painted two-page spreads, colorful human figures explore a universe filled with stars, planets, oceans, and light. The text, also hand-painted, forms an integral part of the art and layouts and conveys a sense of movement and energy. Jeffers speculates about the origin of humanity and argues that history has run up against a dead end, a “world full of strangers” where technology and consumerism deepen people’s loneliness. “Where do we go from here?” he asks, and if he doesn’t know for certain, he still envisions how the journey might appear to future generations living in a time “when we no longer need to burn the ship we are sailing on.” The vivid pink-and-purple palette feels both electric and ethereal, providing an appropriately novel texture to a work about seeking the new and unexpected. In an afterword, Jeffers describes the book as a “suggested trajectory for the human story.” It’s the perfect gift for anyone at a turning point in their own life. (Oct.)