The Book of Blast Off!: 15 Real-Life Space Missions

Magic Cat. Jun. 2023. 40p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9781419765957.
PreS-Gr 3–The great space race is on! Reach for the stars while traveling alongside an endearing canine clad in astronaut gear guiding readers through 15 iconic space missions with satellites, rovers, rockets, telescopes, and space capsules all described in lyrical rhyming text. Knapman introduces astronauts Jessica Meir and Christina Koch (of the International Space Station), as well as John Glenn and Neil Armstrong, plus familiar planets Saturn, Mars, and Jupiter. Additional space features are detailed in the back matter, with robust descriptions of each space mission as well as a glossary deftly presented at the conclusion. Henderson captures the essence of outer space with digital art saturated with night-sky navy blues, the twinkle-white lights of stars, planetary reds of Mars, and subtle browns of the Hubble Space Telescope; this gateway of space images will fill readers’ imaginations as they learn about the universe.
VERDICT This book is sure to change the way readers understand the universe, especially younger children. The delightful rhyming stanzas will inspire further research and have students creating their own imagined excursions.

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