Most of the Better Natural Things in the World by Dave Eggers & Angel Chang
Most of the Better Things in the Natural World
Review Copy from Chronicle Books
Reading Most of the Better Natural Things in the World is an immersive, enchanting visceral experience, taking readers on a journey through the world that is both expansive and intimate. After the enticing title, Eggers's text is nothing more than a list of geographical features presented on the page by Chang with painterly, dreamlike scapes, peaceful in their absence of humanity. A narrative thread that draws readers through the book comes in the form of a yellow chair and a pink rope, seen in the steppe presented on the first two-page spread. A page turn reveals a white tiger, walking on two legs, the chair tied to the tiger's back with the rope. Where is the tiger going? Why is the tiger carrying a chair? The white tiger is the perfect choice for the main character, standing out and blending in across an alpine lake, chaparral, badlands, tundra, dunes glaciers and gulches, playful at times, pensive at others. A gorgeous gatefold spread suitably illustrates a vista, the tiger (and chair) gazing out over the wonder. Readers are rewarded with a final spread that ends (with a wink of word play) in a taiga, a swampy forest, where a place at a table awaits the chair and loved ones await the traveler.
A four page glossary at the end of the book defines all the geographical features, a thumbnail of each marvelous illustration accompanying.