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EARTHDANCE by Lynn Reiser

EARTHDANCE

By Lynn Reiser

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1999
ISBN: 0-688-16326-2
Publisher: Greenwillow/HarperCollins

PLB 0-688-16327-0 Terra’s mother is an astronaut, but as she kisses her daughter farewell before firing up her rockets, she promises to return that evening in time for Terra’s school show, “Earthdance.” Terra practices all day, and in the evening, in a green and blue leotard and toe shoes, she dances the part of Earth, with classmates dancing the roles of sun, the planets, and the seasons. The mother, true to her promise, arrives in time for the finale, with a picture of earth from her travels. The illustrations tell the stories of the mother’s travels through space and Terra’s show simultaneously, with adapted photographs from NASA opposite scenes of the children performing. It’s a lyrical introduction to the solar system and a charming futuristic family story, although science is occasionally sacrificed to poetry, e.g., Earth is not “in the middle of the Milky Way,” and it does not “turn the moon.” Reiser (Cherry Pies and Lullabies, 1998, etc.) concludes with thumbnail-sized photographs she worked with; her lovely perspective on the universe and its mysteries is easy to embrace. (Picture book. 5-8)