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And Then There Was You...

Written and Illustrated by Erika K.H. Gronek

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And Then There Was You... is a story about everything. It was written and illustrated for my son about 6 months after he was born. One sleep-deprived night I nursed him in a rocking chair while pondering the design of his room. I had decorated the top half of the room with Maxfield Parrish-styled clouds and a layout of the summer constellations set in glow-in-the dark paint on the ceiling. I wanted this design to say: “the future is wide open” and “there is nowhere else to go but up.” The border of the room had wall paper that was a replica of a Victorian time-chart of all of human history. It started with Adam and Eve and was up-dated with the on-goings of the present day. Staring into my son’s eyes, I pondered all of the events that had to take place for all of his atoms to be aligned into his tiny form. That is when I decided to write and illustrate a children’s book that accidentally hit upon all of the major themes contained in “Big History.”

And Then There Was You is about all of the events that took place before an individual was born. This means ALL of the events...ever. In other words, it touches upon the idea of "big history." Big History looks at the past on all time scales, from the Big Bang to modernity, seeking out common themes and patterns. It uses a multi-disciplinary approach from the latest findings, such as biology, astronomy, geology, climatology, prehistory, archeology, anthropology, cosmology, natural history, and population and environmental studies. The book is colorfully illustrated with photomontages that portray the Big Bang, the evolution of plants and animals, the Cretaceous–Tertiary extinction event; all the way through the rise of humankind.




Ages 0-5

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