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It is worse, much worse, than you think.
The slowness of climate change is a fairy tale, perhaps as pernicious as the one that says it isn't happening at all, and if your anxiety about it is dominated by fears of sea-level rise, you are barely scratching the surface of what terrors are possible, even within the lifetime of a teenager today.
Over the past decades, the term 'Anthropocene' has climbed into the popular imagination - a name given to the geologic era we live in now, one defined by human intervention in the life of the planet. But however sanguine you might be about the proposition that we have ravaged the natural world, which we surely have, it is another thing entirely to consider the possibility that we have only provoked it, engineering first in ignorance and then in denial a climate system that will now go to war with us for many centuries, perhaps until it destroys us. In the meantime, it will remake us, transforming every aspect of the way we live - the planet no longer nurturing a dream of abundance but a living nightmare.
Written and read by David Wallace-Wells, The Uninhabitable Earth is a powerful examination of the world we find ourselves in.
© David Wallace-Wells 2019 (P) Penguin Audio 2019
In crystalline prose, Wallace-Wells provides a devastating overview of where we are in terms of climate crisis and ecological destruction, and what the future will hold if we keep on going down the same path. Urgently readable, this is an epoch-defining book.
'Clear, engaging and often dazzling'
'A masterly analysis'
Relentless, angry journalism of the highest order. Read it and, for the lack of any more useful response, weep. . . .The article was a sensation and the book will be, too.
The most terrifying book I have ever read . . . a meticulously documented, white-knuckled tour through the cascading catastrophes that will soon engulf our warming planet.
A must-read. It's not only the grandkids and the kids: it's you. And it's not only those in other countries: it's you.
Riveting . . . Some readers will find Mr Wallace-Wells's outline of possible futures alarmist. He is indeed alarmed. You should be, too.
Skipping the scientific jargon and relaying the facts in urgent and elegant prose, the magazine editor crafts a stirring wake-up call to recognize how global warming will permanently alter every aspect of human life.
Wallace-Wells is an extremely adept storyteller, simultaneously urgent and humane . . . [he] does a terrifyingly good job of moving between the specific and the abstract.
Enough to induce an honest-to-God panic attack ... The margins of my review copy of the book are scrawled with expressions of terror and despair, declining in articulacy as the pages proceed, until it's all just cartoon sad faces and swear words ... To read The Uninhabitable Earth is to understand the collapse of the distinction between alarmism and plain realism
Tried ice packs, cold drinks and hunkering down in the shade? Here are some books to help with the heat.