Review of Our Animal Neighbors


Review of Our Animal Neighbors

About This Resource

Summary A review of the new book by Matthieu Ricard and Jason Gruhl that offers a friendly perspective on how we relate to the beings with whom we share earth.


Our Animal Neighbors

Written by Matthieu Ricard and Jason Gruhl
Illustrations by Becca Hall
Bala Kids, 2020 (32 pages)
Ages 4-8

Consider that this big, round earth is in fact one single neighborhood, and every living being is our neighbor. How might this affect the way we treat animals? Our Animal Neighbors celebrates the rich diversity of skills, habits, needs, and homes that creatures on this earth have, and yet reminds us that we all, from ant to octopus to human being, live as part of one global community.

The book was co-written by Matthieu Ricard, Buddhist monk, teacher, and author of A Plea for the Animals, and Jason Gruhl, a psychotherapist and founder of The Joshua School who recently wrote the lovely children’s book Everything Is Connected. Our Animal Neighbors brings together Ricard’s dedication to animal welfare and Gruhl’s talent for making interconnection and interdependence fun, personal and accessible for children. The result is an informative exploration of the world’s species and ecosystems, and the ways we humans affect other beings around us. It’s a warm and friendly book that invites us to think outside of the anthropocentric box and access our compassion for all living things.

Note: this book advocates for the reduction of meat consumption, and offers others resources for supporting animal welfare.

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