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by David Getz & illustrated by Michael Rex

Age Range: 5 - 9

Pub Date: March 1st, 1997
ISBN: 0-8050-4497-3
Publisher: Henry Holt

 In a unique slant on a typical homework assignment, Getz (Frozen Man, 1994, etc.) and newcomer Rex send a girl to incredible heights for her art project--outer space. When Maxine is instructed to look at her home in a new way, she leaves school and keeps on walking. Inside the Kennedy Space Center, she suits up; her outfit includes a diaper, two kinds of underwear (one to keep her warm, the other to cool her down), and a large orange pressure suit, all of which are wittily captured in Rex's acrylic illustrations. Feeling like a 100-pound duck in a diaper, Maxine takes a fantastic journey into space, where fun facts about weightlessness and rockets are interwoven into her personal account of take-off (the noise is like ``a thousand thousand lions roaring! Like the heart of an immense raging fire. Roar!''), flying upside down at dizzying speeds, witnessing hurricanes, shooting stars, and the earth from space, where ``somebody had forgotten to draw the lines.'' What begins as a contrivance catapults readers into an animated, aeronautical adventure and an entertaining look at the science of space travel; it ends as a visionary paradigm for a peaceful planet. (Picture book. 5-9)