Books about the space we explore, and what we leave behind
Check out these 6 books for stories about outer space, colonized space, artwork space and more
On July 20, 1969, a man walked on the moon for the first time, leaving footprints that still exist today. Every step we take leaves an impression — some are temporary, some last an eternity. Here are six new books on the space we explore, and the marks we leave behind.
Moonshot, written and illustrated by Brian Floca
This is a picture book retelling of the first moon landing, written in a drifting, poetic style. From launch to landing, this remarkable human accomplishment is captured beautifully and accessibly.
Even 50 years on, our first mission to the moon still seems like science fiction. Flocca has accented the dream-like quality of space exploration, while still keeping all the facts clear.
The Girl Who Named Pluto, written by Alice McGinty, illustrated by Elizabeth Haidle
This is the true story of Venetia Burney, the only child to ever name a planet! When Planet X is discovered at the edge of our solar system in 1930, Venetia's mind is lit up by the find. Her love of mythology sparks her idea for a name, and her grandfather helps her share the name with Pluto's discoverer.
Often overlooked for their lack of experience, children's ideas can be just as valid as adults'. This story is a perfect example. McGinty's words will encourage and Haidle's drawings will inspire.
A Computer Called Katherine, written by Suzanne Slade, illustrated by Veronica Miller Jamison
This is the story of Katherine Johnson, a young black girl living in segregated America who loves math and numbers. Proving her detractors wrong by soaring ahead of peers, her work at NASA helped send people to space and the moon safely!
Preconceived ideas about what a person can accomplish can be exceedingly detrimental to humanity's potential. This is an excellent story about shattering them, leaving minds stunned and mouths agape.
If You Had Your Birthday Party on the Moon, written by Joyce Lapin, illustrated by Simona Ceccarelli
Of all the places you could go to have your birthday, the moon might just be the most unique! You could jump six times higher, piñata prizes would scatter in slow motion and since one day on the moon takes 30 Earth days, you had better be ready to party!
Putting space facts in this unique context makes the knowledge sound so fun! It's a delightful juxtaposition of whimsy and science, perfect for the young explorer in the family.
This Place: 150 Years Retold, various writers and illustrators
This is a series of short stories about Indigenous people in a graphic novel format. Some are a retelling of historical events and some are fantastical, but all of them deal with the problems of living in a colonized world.
These are stories of resistance and perseverance, each with their own unique voice. Alicia Elliot, from her forward, makes the point that Indigenous people are all living in a post-apocalyptic world, and hopefully, this book opens the eyes of people who have never considered that. Essential.
Basquiat, written and illustrated by Paolo Parisi
Jean-Michel Basquiat was an artist who came to prominence in the New York City in the 1980s, starting as a graffiti artist and ascending to the pinnacle of the art world in a few short years. His work was about leaving a mark on the world, and his story will mark you.
Parisi's palette of four vivid colours is specifically chosen to reference Basquiat's early work, and when it contrasts with the intense blacks of the line work, it is equally as striking. But Parisi's true success is telling Basquiat's story without aping his style, while still keeping it familiar.