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YOU ARE THE FIRST KID ON MARS by Patrick O’Brien

YOU ARE THE FIRST KID ON MARS

By Patrick O’Brien (Author) , Patrick O’Brien (Illustrator)

Age Range: 6 - 9

Pub Date: May 1st, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-399-24634-0
Publisher: Putnam

Pairing a present-tense text to photorealistic digital paintings, O’Brien invites readers to take an entirely credible journey to Mars. The second-person trip begins with a young, white, apparently male tourist’s near-future ride up the space elevator to a space station, followed by a rocket flight to the Mars orbital base and then a quick descent to the small colony complex on the surface. After observing scientists at work, outings in a wheeled vehicle and the MarsPlane not only take “you” past the old Sojourner rover but also provide glimpses of Olympus Mons and the immense Valles Marineris. Six months later, it’s back to Earth: “You have gone where no kid has gone before.” The gear and human figures look as real as the settings, and though the author’s repeated claim that Mars is the closest planet is a debatable one, so strong is the sense of verisimilitude that children may be surprised to learn that they can’t (yet!) make the trip themselves. (Mars facts) (Speculative nonfiction. 6-9)