A lively, informative, and inspiring story of space exploration.

READ REVIEW

VOYAGER'S GREATEST HITS

THE EPIC TREK TO INTERSTELLAR SPACE

From the author of Cars on Mars: Roving the Red Plant (2011) comes this fascinating story of the twin Voyager probes, launched 40 years ago to travel to the outer planets of our solar system and now continuing into interstellar space.

The story begins with two graduate students in the early 1960s. CalTech aeronautics student Gary Flandro, working part-time at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab, is encouraged by his boss to investigate gravity-assist rocket trajectories to the outer planets. Flandro builds upon the idea of unlimited, gravity-propelled interplanetary space travel invented four years earlier by UCLA physics and mathematics student Michael Minovitch. It was Minovitch’s idea of using a planet’s gravitational field as a “slingshot” effect to enable a spacecraft to travel from one planet to another that made the Voyager mission feasible. In an accessible narrative written in an engaging conversational style, Siy explains how the probes work, what they carry onboard—including the remarkable Golden Record that readers will wish for more detail about—and what was discovered in their journeys to Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune, and their ventures beyond the solar system. Chapters are divided into subtopics, keeping the narrative manageable, and plentiful full-color photographs and schematics neatly complement the text.

A lively, informative, and inspiring story of space exploration. (maps, photos, glossary, websites, further reading, source notes) (Nonfiction. 10-14)

Pub Date: June 13, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-58089-728-0

Page Count: 80

Publisher: Charlesbridge

Review Posted Online: March 29, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2017

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

An interesting, engaging collection of snapshot profiles that will encourage readers to explore further and perhaps pursue...

TRAILBLAZERS

33 WOMEN IN SCIENCE WHO CHANGED THE WORLD

With STEM now the hot trend in education and concerted efforts to encourage girls to explore scientific fields, this collective biography is most timely.

Swaby offers 33 brief profiles of some of the world’s most influential women in science, organized in loose groupings: technology and innovation, earth and stars, health and medicine, and biology. Some of the figures, such as Mary Anning, Rachel Carson, Florence Nightingale, Sally Ride, and Marie Tharp, have been written about for young readers, but most have not. Among the lesser known are Stephanie Kwolek, the American chemist who invented Kevlar; Yvonne Brill, the Canadian engineer who invented a thruster used in satellites; Elsie Widdowson, the British nutritionist who demonstrated how important fluid and salt are for the body to properly function; and Italian neuroembryologist Rita Levi-Montalcini, who made breakthrough discoveries in nerve-cell growth. Swaby emphasizes that most of these scientists had to overcome great obstacles before achieving their successes and receiving recognition due to gender-based discrimination. She also notes that people are not born brilliant scientists and that it’s through repeated observation, experimentation, and testing of ideas that important discoveries are made.

An interesting, engaging collection of snapshot profiles that will encourage readers to explore further and perhaps pursue their own scientific curiosities. (source notes, bibliography) (Collective biography. 10-14)

Pub Date: Sept. 13, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-399-55396-7

Page Count: 208

Publisher: Delacorte

Review Posted Online: July 20, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2016

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

A coherent if unexceptional overview of the subject given a solid boost by the visuals.

EXPLORING SPACE

FROM GALILEO TO THE MARS ROVER AND BEYOND

Finely detailed cutaway views of spacecraft and satellites launch a broad account of space exploration’s past, present, and near future.

Jenkins begins with the journey of Voyager I, currently the “most distant man-made object ever,” then goes back to recap the history of astronomy, the space race, and the space-shuttle program. He goes on to survey major interplanetary probes and the proliferating swarm of near-Earth satellites, then closes with reflections on our current revived interest in visiting Mars and a brief mention of a proposed “space elevator.” This is all familiar territory, at least to well-read young skywatchers and would-be astronauts, and despite occasional wry observations (“For longer stays [in space], things to consider include staying fit and healthy, keeping clean, and not going insane”) it reads more like a digest than a vivid, ongoing story. Biesty’s eye for exact, precise detail is well in evidence in the illustrations, though, and if one spread of generic residents of the International Space Station is the only place his human figures aren’t all white and male, at least he offers riveting depictions of space gear and craft with every last scientific instrument and structural element visible and labeled.

A coherent if unexceptional overview of the subject given a solid boost by the visuals. (index, timeline, bibliography) (Nonfiction. 10-13)

Pub Date: June 13, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-7636-8931-5

Page Count: 64

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: March 6, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2017

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more