“I am dust,
the dust of North Africa.
I connect continents.”
The dust of the Sahel—a ribbon of land between the Sahara and the savannah—lifts with the harmattan winds each winter season. It mixes with dust from the Sahara and travels thousands of miles westward, across the African continent and the Atlantic Ocean, to reunite with an unforgotten destination deep in the Amazon basin.
Told from the perspective of dust, A River of Dust takes readers on a journey through vibrantly illustrated landscapes, celebrating the power and wonder of Earth’s ecosystems, and showing how these tiny particles are in fact key to the health of our planet. It is a lyrical love letter from one continent to another, continents that have been separated for millions of years, but remain connected via dust, and will be physically connected once again millions of years in the future.
Six pages of back matter include a description of how scientists use NASA satellite data to estimate the quantity that makes the journey, how the nutrients carried by dust feed the Amazon and the South Atlantic Ocean, how dust alters hurricane formation, how geologists figured out that the continents were once a supercontinent, and more! A teacher’s guide will also be available with extension activities that span the curriculum, not just STEM.
Releases July 18, 2023