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Astronomy: Books For Kids

Looking for a list of the best kids books about astronomy?

Children’s literature has many notable options when it comes to astronomy. To help you find the right books for you and your young reader, we’ve compiled a list of the best kids books about astronomy.

Our list includes board books, picture books, and chapter books. Board books are best for babies and toddlers from ages newborn to 2 or 3. Picture books are generally great options for toddlers and for preschool and kindergarten age children. Picture books are especially enjoyable for adults to read aloud with young kids. The chapter books on our list are generally best for elementary through early middle school age tween kids. You can filter to sort by the best book type for your kid, and you can also use our table of contents to jump to particular topics you think your kid will enjoy.

When it comes to children’s stories about astronomy, there are a variety of titles. This list covers everything, from classics like Zoo in the Sky to popular sellers like Carry On, Mr. Bowditch to some of our favorite hidden gems like There’s No Place Like Space.

We hope this list of kids books about astronomy can be a helpful resource for parents, teachers, and others searching for a new book! As you explore the list, please comment below to let us know what books you would add.

Top 10 Books About Astronomy

Moon! Earth's Best Friend book
#1
Moon! Earth's Best Friend
Written by Stacy McAnulty & illustrated by Stevie Lewis
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

From writer Stacy McAnulty and illustrator Stevie Lewis, Moon! Earth’s Best Friend is a light-hearted nonfiction picture book about the formation and history of the moon—told from the perspective of the moon itself…

Meet Moon! She’s more than just a rock—she’s Earth’s rock, her best friend she can always count on. Moon never turns her back on her friend (literally: she’s always facing Earth with the same side!). These two will stick together forever. With characteristic humor and charm, Stacy McAnulty channels the voice of Moon in this next celestial “autobiography” in the Our Universe series. Rich with kid-friendly facts and beautifully brought to life by Stevie Lewis, this is an equally charming and irresistible companion to Earth! My First 4.54 Billion Years and Sun! One in a Billion.

There's No Place Like Space book
#2
There's No Place Like Space
Written by Tish Rabe & illustrated by Aristides Ruiz
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Dr. Seuss’s Cat in the Hat introduces Sally and Dick to the planets, stars, and moons in our universe.

If You Had Your Birthday Party on the Moon book
#3
If You Had Your Birthday Party on the Moon
Written by Joyce Lapin & illustrated by Simona Ceccarelli
picture book
Recommend Ages: 7-10

Blast off to an extraterrestrial birthday celebration where young partygoers get to romp in a low-gravity playground; discover that candles and balloons behave weirdly in the lunar atmosphere; and learn why the “moon angels” they make in the dust will last for millennia. This cool picture book combines fun and facts to explain the science behind each surprise in terms children can easily grasp.

Stephen Hawking (Little People, BIG DREAMS) book
#4
Stephen Hawking (Little People, BIG DREAMS)
Written by Maria Isabel Sanchez Vegara & illustrated by Matt Hunt
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

When Stephen Hawking was a little boy, he used to stare up at the stars and wonder about the universe. Although he was never top of the class, his curiosity took him to the best universities in England: Oxford and Cambridge. It also led him to make one of the biggest scientific discoveries of the 20th century: Hawking radiation. This moving book features stylish and quirky illustrations and extra facts at the back, including a biographical timeline with historical photos and a detailed profile of the brilliant physicist’s life.

Heart on Pluto book
#5
Heart on Pluto
Written by Karl Jones & illustrated by Andrew J. Ross
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

Love is everywhere, even in the fartherst reaches of the Solar System. On NASA’s first-ever mission to Pluto, the New Horizons satellite discovers that even when you’re far from home, you are loved.

New Horizons was the first NASA satellite to visit and take close-up images of Pluto. And though the journey was long and challenging, New Horizons discovered a message of love in the heart-shaped nitrogren ice lake on Pluto’s surface.

Where's the Astronaut? book
#6
Where's the Astronaut?
Written by Nosy Crow & illustrated by Ingela P. Arrhenius
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the moon landing with little ones by lifting the felt flaps to discover four hidden space-themed friends. Then find the mirror under the final flap! Parents love these books because they are simple yet robust, and little readers adore them because they’re fun and easy to play with.

National Geographic Kids Little Kids First Board Book: Space book
#7
National Geographic Kids Little Kids First Board Book: Space
Written & illustrated by Ruth A. Musgrave
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

National Geographic spins off its best-selling Little Kids First Big Book series into engaging new board books to introduce even the littlest kids to high-quality nonfiction. These sturdy pages explore the basics of the solar system with amazing photographs, super-simple facts, and lively, age-appropriate language to keep babies and toddlers—and their grown-ups—fascinated by every colorful page. With stunning photos of the Earth and other planets, this beautiful book introduces the very youngest explorers to the wonders of the space, beginning right here on Earth and expanding into the universe beyond. Designed to be the stepping stone to the Little Kids First Big Book series, the National Geographic Little Kids First Board Books take similar subjects and drill them down to the simplest nonfiction concepts for the youngest audience. Not only will readers learn about planets and our solar system, they can also find recurring shapes and patterns in the design; occasional callouts will add humor for adults, and sidebar text offers additional learning for older siblings or those ready for more complex information.With their square shape, bright and playful design, awesome photography, clear text, and cues to encourage interactive learning, the Little Kids First Board Books mirror the beloved First Big Books while taking a fresh new approach to excite a baby’s sense of wonder and make learning about nature and science fun.

Adventures in Space book
#8
Adventures in Space
Written & illustrated by Simon Tyler
picture book
Recommend Ages: 7-10

From the brilliant illustrator, Simon Tyler, comes a wonderful compendium of space, space travel and much more. One day our sun will grow…and grow…and grow…until it ends its life as a red giant 400x its current size. Wonder at facts like these, and much more, in the new illustrated guide to Space. Space is fascinating, and in this book Simon Tyler gorgeously illustrates the planets, meteors, rockets and galaxies - even strange phenomena like the speed of light and solar flares!

Super Space book
#9
Super Space
Written & illustrated by Editors of Silver Dolphin Books
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

Lift the flaps to explore outer space!

Which planet is the hottest? How many astronauts have been to the Moon? Which planet has dust devils? Find out the answers to all of these questions and more in First Flaps and Facts: Super Space! This book introduces children to the planets, the sun and stars, the moon, space exploration, and more with flaps to lift, a wheel to turn, and a giant foldout. With colorful illustrations and simple text, this book is perfect for children who are just learning about space.

Earth! My First 4.54 Billion Years book
#10
Earth! My First 4.54 Billion Years
Written by Stacy McAnulty & illustrated by David Litchfield and Stacy McAnulty
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Prepare to learn all about Earth from the point-of-view of Earth herself! In this funny yet informative book, filled to the brim with kid-friendly facts, readers will discover key moments in Earth’s life, from her childhood more than four billion years ago all the way up to present day. Beloved children’s book author Stacy McAnulty helps Earth tell her story, and award-winning illustrator David Litchfield brings the words to life.

Table of Contents
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Books About Astronomy and The Moon

Moon! Earth's Best Friend
Written by Stacy McAnulty & illustrated by Stevie Lewis
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

From writer Stacy McAnulty and illustrator Stevie Lewis, Moon! Earth’s Best Friend is a light-hearted nonfiction picture book about the formation and history of the moon—told from the perspective of the moon itself…

Meet Moon! She’s more than just a rock—she’s Earth’s rock, her best friend she can always count on. Moon never turns her back on her friend (literally: she’s always facing Earth with the same side!). These two will stick together forever. With characteristic humor and charm, Stacy McAnulty channels the voice of Moon in this next celestial “autobiography” in the Our Universe series. Rich with kid-friendly facts and beautifully brought to life by Stevie Lewis, this is an equally charming and irresistible companion to Earth! My First 4.54 Billion Years and Sun! One in a Billion.

If You Had Your Birthday Party on the Moon
Written by Joyce Lapin & illustrated by Simona Ceccarelli
picture book
Recommend Ages: 7-10

Blast off to an extraterrestrial birthday celebration where young partygoers get to romp in a low-gravity playground; discover that candles and balloons behave weirdly in the lunar atmosphere; and learn why the “moon angels” they make in the dust will last for millennia. This cool picture book combines fun and facts to explain the science behind each surprise in terms children can easily grasp.

Where's the Astronaut?
Written by Nosy Crow & illustrated by Ingela P. Arrhenius
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the moon landing with little ones by lifting the felt flaps to discover four hidden space-themed friends. Then find the mirror under the final flap! Parents love these books because they are simple yet robust, and little readers adore them because they’re fun and easy to play with.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Pop-Up Peekaboo! Space - Take your preschooler on an exciting journey through space in this cute baby board book with flaps to lift and pop-ups to enjoy. This book introduces space, to babies, while encouraging first learning through lively, read-aloud rhymes, as well as fun and colorful space scenes. With the help of parents and caregivers, toddlers will have fun turning the pages, guessing who’s hiding under the flaps and then lifting the flaps to play peekaboo! They will learn all about space, astronauts, stars, planets, and more! Ideal for preschool play, this sturdy baby book will appeal to both parents and children and is certain to keep little ones entertained time and time again!

  2. Many Moons - Many Moons explores every phase of the moon through beautiful illustrations, and compares each phase to a different shape, like a waxing moon and a banana! Many Moons shows young children the different phases of the moon, from the new moon to a waning crescent, with a variety of beautiful, bright illustrations. Each spread features a specific phase of the moon, and compares it to different shapes, such as a cat’s tail, a banana, or a brilliant smile. The night sky is vast and beautiful, and to many children, a mysterious thing full of wonder. Why not nurture this sense of early curiosity? Many Moons introduces children to basic astronomy. Understanding the moon is a jumping off point to learning about the stars, space, the ocean tides, and so much more

  3. Moon - Originally published in the United Kingdom by Little Tiger Press in 2017.

  4. Eight Days Gone - Snappy verse and retro art brings readers along for Apollo 11’s historic, eight-day mission to the moon in 1969. Young readers will learn the basics about the gear, equipment, and spaceship used by the astronauts, as well as the history of NASA’s moon mission. O’ Rourke’s vibrant and retro illustrations paired with McReynolds’ short verse creates a perfect read aloud for preschool and kindergarteners eager to learn about Buzz Aldrin’s trip to the moon. Back matter includes a bibliography and author’s note with additional information about the mission and the crew’s return home after the historic first lunar landing.

Want to see books about the moon?

Books About Astronomy and Planets

There's No Place Like Space
Written by Tish Rabe & illustrated by Aristides Ruiz
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Dr. Seuss’s Cat in the Hat introduces Sally and Dick to the planets, stars, and moons in our universe.

Heart on Pluto
Written by Karl Jones & illustrated by Andrew J. Ross
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

Love is everywhere, even in the fartherst reaches of the Solar System. On NASA’s first-ever mission to Pluto, the New Horizons satellite discovers that even when you’re far from home, you are loved.

New Horizons was the first NASA satellite to visit and take close-up images of Pluto. And though the journey was long and challenging, New Horizons discovered a message of love in the heart-shaped nitrogren ice lake on Pluto’s surface.

Nerdy Babies: Space
Written & illustrated by Emmy Kastner
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

In Nerdy Babies: Space, follow our intrepid infants into the great unknown. Check out the moon and the sun and all the planets in our solar system. Plus, learn about gravity and orbits in this simple text written in question and answer format.

With bright artwork and an engaging design, this will be a book that the very littlest nerds will want to return to again and again.

Stay curious. There’s more to learn about everything!

Honorable Mentions
  1. If Pluto Was a Pea - Join two curious kids as they explore their backyard, and contemplate their place within our vast universe in this adorable picture book that’s full of comparisons to help kids understand cosmic size. If Pluto was a pea… the Sun would be like a tent, Mercury would be a marble, and Earth would be a golf ball. Pluto is the smallest planet in our solar system, but how small is small? As it turns out, it only takes the contents of a lunchbox and a backyard to find out.

  2. Sun! One in a Billion - Meet Sun: He’s a star! And not just any star—he’s one in a billion. He lights up our solar system and makes life possible. With characteristic humor and charm, Stacy McAnulty channels the voice of Sun in this next celestial “autobiography.” Rich with kid-friendly facts and beautifully brought to life by Stevie Lewis, this is an equally charming and irresistible companion to Earth! My First 4.54 Billion Years.

  3. The Moon - This series explores the four key elements of our Solar System: the Sun, the Moon, the Planets, and the Stars. With each title including fascinating facts and photographic images, young readers will enjoy discovering what lies in the darkness beyond.

  4. The Planets - This series explores the four key elements of our Solar System: the Sun, the Moon, the Planets, and the Stars. With each title including fascinating facts and photographic images, young readers will enjoy discovering what lies in the darkness beyond.

Want to see books about planets?

Books About Astronomy and Aeronautics, Astronautics And Space Science

National Geographic Kids Little Kids First Board Book: Space
Written & illustrated by Ruth A. Musgrave
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

National Geographic spins off its best-selling Little Kids First Big Book series into engaging new board books to introduce even the littlest kids to high-quality nonfiction. These sturdy pages explore the basics of the solar system with amazing photographs, super-simple facts, and lively, age-appropriate language to keep babies and toddlers—and their grown-ups—fascinated by every colorful page. With stunning photos of the Earth and other planets, this beautiful book introduces the very youngest explorers to the wonders of the space, beginning right here on Earth and expanding into the universe beyond. Designed to be the stepping stone to the Little Kids First Big Book series, the National Geographic Little Kids First Board Books take similar subjects and drill them down to the simplest nonfiction concepts for the youngest audience. Not only will readers learn about planets and our solar system, they can also find recurring shapes and patterns in the design; occasional callouts will add humor for adults, and sidebar text offers additional learning for older siblings or those ready for more complex information.With their square shape, bright and playful design, awesome photography, clear text, and cues to encourage interactive learning, the Little Kids First Board Books mirror the beloved First Big Books while taking a fresh new approach to excite a baby’s sense of wonder and make learning about nature and science fun.

Super Space
Written & illustrated by Editors of Silver Dolphin Books
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

Lift the flaps to explore outer space!

Which planet is the hottest? How many astronauts have been to the Moon? Which planet has dust devils? Find out the answers to all of these questions and more in First Flaps and Facts: Super Space! This book introduces children to the planets, the sun and stars, the moon, space exploration, and more with flaps to lift, a wheel to turn, and a giant foldout. With colorful illustrations and simple text, this book is perfect for children who are just learning about space.

Spectacular Space
Written & illustrated by James Olstein
picture book
Recommend Ages: 7-10

Aspiring astronauts will love discovering wonderful trivia about outer space, from the first flower grown out there to the fact that Saturn could float in water! There are fun tidbits about tortoises orbiting the Moon, Martian rocks, and lightning bolts longer than our galaxy! Also, you’ll laugh out loud when you see the funny illustrations of Einstein surfing a gravitational wave and pizza floating through space!

Honorable Mentions
  1. Planetarium - The newest title in the Welcome to the Museum series turns its focus to the heavens and explores the wonders of space. Welcome to the museum that is always open to explore. Step inside the pages of this beautiful book to discover galleries of galactic matter, expertly curated to bring you the experience of a fascinating exhibition in the comfort of your own home. Planetarium features all aspects of space, from the sun and our solar system to the lives of stars, the Milky Way, and the universe beyond. With stunning artwork from Dinosaurium illustrator Chris Wormell and informative text by Raman Prinja, a professor of astrophysics at University College, London, Planetarium is the perfect gift for budding astronomers and armchair stargazers alike.

  2. Voyage Through Space - See space as you’ve never seen it before! Join one little astronaut and her space dog as they voyage through our solar system. Journey from the Sun, to the planets, asteroids and Kuiper belt, before folding out a glow-in- the-dark poster at the back. Simply turn off the light to bring the incredible glow-in-the-dark ink to life.

  3. Curiosity - Maybe you remember when a little robotic spacecraft landed on a far-off planet. On August 6, 2012, the rover Curiosity touched down on the rocky surface of Mars—and now she’s ready to guide you through her journey firsthand. From idea to creation and beyond, this fact-filled, stylish book introduces readers to Curiosity and her mission: to discover more about the red planet and search for evidence of life. How did Curiosity get her name? What tools does she use to carry out her tasks? In her own voice, the popular NASA rover tells how and why she traveled more than 350,000,000 miles to explore a planet no human has ever visited . . . and what she’s been doing there. In his debut picture book, Markus Motum brings Curiosity’s story to life in vivid color: the deep blues of space set off the warm, rusted hues of Mars’s dusty red surface, marking this lovable rover and her mission as something special—truly a world apart.

  4. Caroline's Comets - “Caroline Herschel was the first woman to discover a comet and the first woman to be paid as a scientist.”—

Books About Astronomy and The Solar System

Adventures in Space
Written & illustrated by Simon Tyler
picture book
Recommend Ages: 7-10

From the brilliant illustrator, Simon Tyler, comes a wonderful compendium of space, space travel and much more. One day our sun will grow…and grow…and grow…until it ends its life as a red giant 400x its current size. Wonder at facts like these, and much more, in the new illustrated guide to Space. Space is fascinating, and in this book Simon Tyler gorgeously illustrates the planets, meteors, rockets and galaxies - even strange phenomena like the speed of light and solar flares!

Hello, World! Solar System
Written & illustrated by Jill McDonald
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

Presents the planets in the solar system and describes what makes them special.

What We See in the Stars
Written & illustrated by Kelsey Oseid
picture book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

An illustrated guide to the heavens combines the myths, historic significance, and various interpretations of objects seen in the night sky, including the recognized constellations, meteors, eclipses, planets, and moons.

Honorable Mentions
  1. The Day the Universe Exploded My Head - Hang on tight for a raucous bounce through the solar system and back — propelled by funny, fanciful, factually sound poems and exuberant illustrations. The universe poured into me. My brain was overloaded. It smoked and glowed red-hot. And then it actually exploded. Ever wonder what the sun has to say about being the closest star to Earth? Or what Pluto has gotten up to since being demoted to a dwarf planet? Or where rocket ships go when they retire? Listen closely, because maybe, just maybe, your head will explode, too. With poetry that is equal parts accurate and entertaining — and illustrations that are positively out of this world — this book will enthrall amateur stargazers and budding astrophysicists as it reveals many of the wonders our universe holds. Space travelers in search of more information will find notes about the poems, a glossary, and a list of resources at the end.

  2. The Magic School Bus Lost in the Solar System - On a special field trip in the magic school bus, Ms. Frizzle’s class goes into outer space and visits each planet in the solar system.

Books About Astronomy and Science And Technology

Always Looking Up
Written by Laura Gehl & illustrated by Louise Pigott
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-7

This empowering picture book biography tells the story of Nancy Grace Roman, the astronomer who overcame obstacles like weak eyesight and teachers who discouraged women from pursuing astronomy to lead the NASA team that built the Hubble Space Telescope. A testament to women in scientific careers and a record of an important NASA milestone.

What Miss Mitchell Saw
Written by Hayley Barrett & illustrated by Diana Sudyka
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Every evening, from the time she was a child, Maria Mitchell stood on her rooftop with her telescope and swept the sky. And then one night she saw something unusual—a comet no one had ever seen before! Miss Mitchell’s extraordinary discovery made her famous the world over and paved the way for her to become America’s first professional female astronomer. Gorgeously illustrated by Diana Sudyka, this moving picture book about a girl from humble beginnings who became a star in the field of astronomy is sure to inspire budding scientists everywhere.

Look Up!
Written by Robert Burleigh & illustrated by Raúl Colón
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Henrietta Levitt was the first person to discover the scientific importance of a star’s brightness—so why has no one heard of her? Learn all about a female pioneer of astronomy in this picture book biography. Henrietta Swan Leavitt was born on July 4, 1868, and she changed the course of astronomy when she was just twenty-five years old. Henrietta spent years measuring star positions and sizes from photographs taken by the telescope at the Harvard College Observatory, where she worked. After Henrietta observed that certain stars had a fixed pattern to their changes, her discovery made it possible for astronomers to measure greater and greater distances—leading to our present understanding of the vast size of the universe. An astronomer of her time called Henrietta Leavitt “one of the most important women ever to touch astronomy,” and another close associate said she had the “best mind at the Harvard Observatory.” Henrietta Leaveitt’s story will inspire young women and aspiring scientists of all kinds and includes additional information about the solar system and astronomy.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Star Stuff: Carl Sagan and the Mysteries of the Cosmos - For every child who has ever looked up at the stars and asked, “What are they?” comes the story of a curious boy who never stopped wondering: Carl Sagan. When Carl Sagan was a young boy he went to the 1939 World’s Fair and his life was changed forever. From that day on he never stopped marveling at the universe and seeking to understand it better. Star Stuff follows Carl from his days star gazing from the bedroom window of his Brooklyn apartment, through his love of speculative science fiction novels, to his work as an internationally renowned scientist who worked on the Voyager missions exploring the farthest reaches of space. This book introduces the beloved man who brought the mystery of the cosmos into homes across America to a new generation of dreamers and star gazers.

  2. Who Was Galileo? - Like Michelangelo, Galileo is another Renaissance great known just by his first name—a name that is synonymous with scientific achievement. Born in Pisa, Italy, in the sixteenth century, Galileo contributed to the era’s great rebirth of knowledge. He invented a telescope to observe the heavens. From there, not even the sky was the limit! He turned long-held notions about the universe topsy turvy with his support of a sun-centric solar system. Patricia Brennan Demuth offers a sympathetic portrait of a brilliant man who lived in a time when speaking scientific truth to those in power was still a dangerous proposition.

  3. Little Guides to Great Lives: Stephen Hawking - Stephen Hawking was one of the world’s most famous scientists. His ground-breaking research into black holes and the Big Bang has helped to explain the beginnings of our universe and his book A Brief History of Time has sold over 10 million copies. Diagnosed with a form of motor neurone disease when he was a young man, Stephen was inspired to achieve his goals as fast as possible. Through incredible determination and skill, he became a legendary scientist, a best-selling author, and the man that changed the way we think about the universe.

  4. Look Up with Me: Neil deGrasse Tyson: A Life Among the Stars - A 2020 Outstanding Science Trade Book for Students K-12! **With an introduction from Neil DeGrasse Tyson about the importance of kid-like curiosity, this lyrical picture book biography on the beloved astrophysicist and host of Cosmos is the perfect gift for young astronomers and fans of all ages.** Neil deGrasse Tyson was born curious. And the secrets of a billion galaxies lay there—waiting for him to explore its cosmic mysteries. He just had to look up. Up beyond the city lights, up at the shining stars, up through the Milky Way, and past the veil of the night sky. Follow young Neil’s journey as he discovers the wonders of space, the thrill of science, and the joy in sharing the beauty of our amazing universe. Read his favorite mind-blowing facts and learn what mysteries are left to solve. From On a Beam of Light author Jennifer Berne and debut paper illustrator Lorraine Nam comes the inspiring true tale of Neil’s life and how he became a world-famous astrophysicist. The future of discovery lays with you. Look up with Neil and begin your own journey into the cosmos.

Books About Astronomy and The Universe

The Stuff of Stars
Written by Marion Dane Bauer & illustrated by Ekua Holmes
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Before the universe was formed, before time and space existed, there was . . . nothing. But then . . . BANG! Stars caught fire and burned so long that they exploded, flinging stardust everywhere. And the ash of those stars turned into planets. Into our Earth. And into us. In a poetic text, Marion Dane Bauer takes readers from the trillionth of a second when our universe was born to the singularities that became each one of us, while vivid illustrations by Ekua Holmes capture the void before the Big Bang and the ensuing life that burst across galaxies. A seamless blend of science and art, this picture book reveals the composition of our world and beyond—and how we are all the stuff of stars.

Destination: Space
Written by Dr Christoph Englert & illustrated by Tom Clohosy Cole
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

Hop on board the space shuttle and get ready for the ride of your life as you explore deep space with your five fellow space cadets. This journey of discovery takes you through our local solar system and beyond, to galaxies far and wide. With every encounter, learn more about the science behind the stars, planets, meteors and comets in our sky, and the history of our universe.

The Skies Above My Eyes
Written by Charlotte Guillain & illustrated by Yuval Zommer
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-7

Have you ever looked up and wondered what’s going on high up in the skies above your eyes? Take a journey up into the air, through the atmosphere, way out into space, and back down to Earth in this richly illustrated concertina book. Readers will zoom past the technology that fills our skies, from helicopters, fighter jets, weather balloons, and satellites, hang-gliders and hot-air balloons. They’ll also discover the insects and animals that whizz through the skies, explore the layers of the atmosphere, and travel through the solar system and out to the galaxies far beyond. Following on from The Street Beneath My Feet, which dug down to the centre of the Earth, this expansive concertina book opens out to an impressive 2.5 metres, perfect for inquisitive young minds.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Astrophysics for Young People in a Hurry - Neil deGrasse Tyson’s #1 New York Times best-selling guide to the cosmos, adapted for young readers. From the basics of physics to big questions about the nature of space and time, celebrated astrophysicist and science communicator Neil deGrasse Tyson breaks down the mysteries of the cosmos into bite-sized pieces. Astrophysics for Young People in a Hurry describes the fundamental rules and unknowns of our universe clearly―and with Tyson’s characteristic wit, there’s a lot of fun thrown in, too. This adaptation by Gregory Mone includes full-color photos, infographics, and extra explanations to make even the trickiest concepts accessible. Building on the wonder inspired by outer space, Astrophysics for Young People in a Hurry introduces an exciting field and the principles of scientific inquiry to young readers.

  2. One Day a Dot - One Day a Dot explores the age-old question: Where did we come from? Where did everything come from? Starting with one tiny dot and continuing through the Big Bang to the rise of human societies, the story of our universe is told in simple and vivid terms. But the biggest question of all cannot be answered: Where did that one dot come from? One Day a Dot is a beautiful and vibrant picture book that uses the visual motif of circles as to guide young readers through the stages of life on Earth.

  3. There Was a Black Hole that Swallowed the Universe - Spark creative conversations about celestial beings with this clever parody from the #1 science author for kids! PLUS, use a black light to reveal secret, invisible text and artwork that reverses the story from nothing to the scientific creation of everything! There was a black hole that swallowed the universe. I don’t know why it swallowed the universe—oh well, it couldn’t get worse. There was a black hole that swallowed a galaxy. It left quite a cavity after swallowing that galaxy. It swallowed the galaxies that filled universe. I don’t know why it swallowed the universe—oh well, it couldn’t get worse. Using the familiar rhythm of “There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly,” follow along as the black hole swallows up the universe and everything that exists in it, from the biggest to the smallest pieces of matter. The silly, vibrant artwork is sure to make stargazers of all ages smile.

Books About Astronomy and Stars

Crinkle, Crinkle, Little Star
Written by Justin Krasner & illustrated by Emma Yarlett
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-4

Take an interactive journey through the night sky in an innovative, tactile board book, a special book that engages three senses—seeing, touching, and hearing. With its gorgeous, full-spread illustrations of constellations and beloved bedtime lullaby reimagined, Crinkle, Crinkle, Little Star is the perfect book to rock babies to sleep. Here’s Taurus the bull, strong and fast. Cetus the whale, waving a mighty tail. Orion, with bow and arrow in hand. Babies can trace the imaginary lines that turn random stars into ancient constellations—and, in a special treat, create a crinkling sound by tracing the channel of shimmery material underneath the last illustration in the book. That same mysterious, compelling crinkling sound persists when baby and parents hold the book and rub the crinkly material on the back cover.

A Child's Introduction to the Night Sky
Written by Michael Driscoll & illustrated by Meredith Hamilton
picture book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Children eight and up will enjoy this conversational but information-packed introduction to astronomy and stargazing, which includes the achievements of the great scientists, the history of space exploration, the story of our solar system, the myths behind the constellations, and how to navigate the night sky. Whimsical color illustrations on every page and handy definitions and sidebars help engage younger readers and develop their interest. The special star wheel helps locate stars and planets from any location at any time of year. This is the third in Black Dog & Leventhal’s successful series including The Story of the Orchestra and A Child’s Introduction to Poetry.

Once Upon a Starry Night
Written by Jacqueline Mitton & illustrated by Christina Balit
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-9

The follow-up to Zoo in the Sky presents facts about stars, nebulas, galaxies, and constellations and recounts the Greek myths that provide widely-known names for ten constellations, from Andromeda to Pegasus.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Zoo in the Sky - Shows and describes the animal constellations, including Canis Major and Scorpius the Scorpion, and provides information about some of the more unusual stars that make up the constellations. Reprint.

  2. Space - How big is the universe? What would it be like to live on Venus? Is there life on another planet? What was the Big Bang? How does space travel work? Find out the answers to these and many more questions in this interactive lift-the-flap fact book. Embark on an epic journey through space and see the amazing Milky Way, find out what life is like for astronauts and take a closer look at life outside our galaxy … could aliens really exist?

  3. Our Stars - A simple introduction to the stars, planets, and outer space.

  4. Stars! Stars! Stars! - When Minna expresses an interest in stars, her mother suggests she invite a few friends to a star party, including a special dinner, a trip to the new Star Space at the Children’s Museum, and star-gazing.

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Books About Astronomy and Outer Space

Hidden Figures Young Readers' Edition
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

New York Times bestselling author Margot Lee Shetterly’s book is now available in a new edition perfect for young readers. This is the amazing true story of four African-American female mathematicians at NASA who helped achieve some of the greatest moments in our space program. Soon to be a major motion picture starring Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monae, Kirsten Dunst, and Kevin Costner. Before John Glenn orbited the earth, or Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, a group of dedicated female mathematicians known as “human computers” used pencils, slide rules, and adding machines to calculate the numbers that would launch rockets, and astronauts, into space. This book brings to life the stories of Dorothy Vaughan, Mary Jackson, Katherine Johnson, and Christine Darden, four African-American women who lived through the civil rights era, the Space Race, the Cold War, and the movement for gender equality, and whose work forever changed the face of NASA and the country.

Earth! My First 4.54 Billion Years
Written by Stacy McAnulty & illustrated by David Litchfield and Stacy McAnulty
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Prepare to learn all about Earth from the point-of-view of Earth herself! In this funny yet informative book, filled to the brim with kid-friendly facts, readers will discover key moments in Earth’s life, from her childhood more than four billion years ago all the way up to present day. Beloved children’s book author Stacy McAnulty helps Earth tell her story, and award-winning illustrator David Litchfield brings the words to life.

The Sun
Written & illustrated by Gemma McMullen
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-9

This series explores the four key elements of our Solar System: the Sun, the Moon, the Planets, and the Stars. With each title including fascinating facts and photographic images, young readers will enjoy discovering what lies in the darkness beyond.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Destination: Moon - An out-of-this-world exploration of the 1969 Moon landing from children’s science expert Seymour Simon! In July of 1969, NASA sent the Apollo 11 spacecraft to the Moon. Inside were three people: Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins. They went into lunar orbit a few days later. More than a hundred hours after launch, the word came back: “The Eagle has landed!” In this exciting account of the famous 1969 Moon landing, award-winning science writer Seymour Simon tells the story of the Space Race between the US and the Soviet Union; recalls how families across the world sat captivated in front of their TVs to witness humankind’s first steps beyond Earth; and explains much of the science and technology that got our astronauts to the Moon on that remarkable day. Perfect for young scholars’ school reports, Destination: Moon features clear text, vibrantly colored pages, engaging sidebars, and stunning full-color photographs. This book includes an author’s note, a glossary, a timeline, and an index and supports the Common Core State Standards.

  2. A Trip Into Space - Blast off into the sky and visit the International Space Station! A lively, rhythmical story and detailed illustrations take readers on a trip to the ISS, where astronauts sleep zipped up and walk in space. This great read-aloud includes information (verified by NASA staff) about the ISS. Fact-filled and fun, this story will send young minds soaring.

Books About Astronomy and Science

Professor Astro Cat's Frontiers of Space
Written by Dominic Walliman & illustrated by Ben Newman
picture book
Recommend Ages: 7-10

Professor Astro Cat explains everything he knows about the solar system and outer space, including the Big Bang, manned missions to the Moon, and the night sky throughout the months of the year.

Starry Skies
Written by Samantha Chagollan & illustrated by Nila Aye
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-6

Every night, the sky is filled with stars that tell a thousand tales. Brave warriors, regal queens, fierce beasts — they all parade across the starry skies each night. In Starry Skies you’ll discover some of the most famous constellations and learn how to find them in the night sky. With brilliant illustrations by Nila Aye, you will see the shapes of each constellation, and imagine what they might look like when you look up into the dark sky above. This introduction to astronomy is all you need to start learning about stars, so get ready, star hunters, and look to the skies!

A Journey Through Space
Written by Steve Parker & illustrated by John Haslam
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-9

Take a journey from your doorstep into outer space! Zoom through the Solar System, discovering satellites, comets and asteroids along the way. Explore craters on Mars, moon-hop around Jupiter, and get a close-up view of Saturn’s amazing rings. Just don’t travel too close to the Sun! Packed with lively illustrations to reveal our amazing universe, this book is perfect for a parent and child to read together or to explore independently. Includes a dust jacket that doubles up as a poster.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Pluto is Peeved! - Who can blame Pluto for being peeved after scientists unceremoniously decide he is no longer a planet? Looking for answers, Pluto heads to the science museum! Kids will take a scientific journey side-by- side with Pluto, as he asks what exactly scientists are interested in. Presented in a graphic novel-inspired format Pluto Is Peeved! transforms the vast universe into a fun and informative introduction to astronomy and the scientific method.

  2. Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, I Know Exactly What You Are - Teach children about the real science behind the stars using one of the most iconic and recognized childhood classics, ‘Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star’ Twinkle, Twinkle, Little StarI know exactly what you are.Opaque ball of hot dense gas,million times our planet’s mass,looking small because you’re farI know exactly what you areWritten by an expert in astrophysics, this book is the perfect primer for learning exactly what those twinkling little stars are doing way up high in the sky. Each stanza explains what stars are made of and their relationship to the earth in an easy-to-understand way.

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