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Our Toxic World

Our Toxic World
A Guide to Hazardous Substances in our Everyday Lives

First Edition

August 2008 | 180 pages | SAGE India
The mode of development that the world-and India-has followed has led to a situation where we are surrounded by numerous hazardous substances in our everyday lives, which affect the health of people, of other living creatures, and of the planet as a whole. Our Toxic World is an effort to shine a keen light on these substances, and suggest alternatives that will allow readers to improve the physical quality of their lives and of their environment.

Our Toxic World takes a series of peeks into the lives of the fictitious Sachdeva family and the people they come in contact with, examines the hazardous substances that affect us in our everyday lives, outlines the effect these materials can have on us, and suggests alternative routes that we can adopt.

Foreword Ravi Agarwal
Cast of Characters
Construction: City of Bones
Automobile Pollution: Air Today, Gone Tomorrow
Environmental Legislation: Laws of the Land
Industrial Pollution: Poisonous Development
Chemicals: Killer Cocktail
Electronic Waste: System Failure Imminent
Plastics: Material Mayhem
Heavy Metals: Trail of Destruction
Food: Toxins at your Table
Household Waste: Attitudes that Stink
Recycling: The Right Stuff
Festivals: Callous Celebrations

Our Toxic World is based on all the information that the environmental group Toxics Link has garnered over years of advocacy and research…Factual information is laid out in a visually appealing manner…The book also gives out possible solutions – small actions that children can incorporate in their lives or organic and less harmful alternatives to chemical based products.

The Book Review

Our Toxic World takes a closer look at the ‘hidden perils,’ which dominates our urban lives today. A graphic narrative, conceived, structured and scripted by Aniruddha Sen Gupta, the book suggests alternatives for readers to improve the physical quality of their lives and the environment in which they live.

The Times of India

In an age of information overload, reaching out is not nearly as important as reaching out effectively. Text heavy, verbose data on the environment can put even the most eco conscious reader into a snooze. The need of the hour is to develop methods of communication that are attuned to serve our ever-shrinking spans of attention. It is in this context that books like Our Toxic World: A guide to hazardous substances in our everyday lives makes sense.

Teacher Plus

This is one of the most unique and useful publications of its kind (designed for non-technical people) to have emerged from India’s struggling anti-toxics movement in over two decades. Meticulously researched and very well-written and illustrated, it should be compulsory reading for all families…The book offers a whole compendium of solutions that makes this a virtual manual for safe living for those running schools, offices and homes. Sage Publications is to be complimented on its persistent attempt to bring meaningful books to the public.

A book on electronic waste, organic pollutants, food adulterants, and all the assorted toxins that stalk our everyday life could make for tedious reading. But package the information, as this one does, in the form of a story, illustrate it like a graphic novel, add a dash of acerbic wit, and it becomes an absorbing read….The illustrations bring the book to life. Another refreshing feature of the book is bold enough to tackle real issues and make them simple enough for children to understand.


Written in the form of an informative journal, each chapter of the book ends with additional information that will help you better understand environmental problems. The end notes also list things that cause damage to the environment, which you can avoid. The illustrations in the book make the many complex terms easier to understand. The book is very comprehensive and is a great read.


For a topic as grim and morbid as toxics, the author has done a good job to make it lively and interesting.The Illustrations are wonderfully done, the script is easy to understand and peppered with light humour.... All in all, a commendable effort and worth an exposure.


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