written by Linda McReynolds; illustrated by Ryan O'Rourke
Source: Review copy provided by the publisher
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Smoke and flame.
Another book about the Apollo 11 moon landing? What makes this one special? I'm glad you asked. There were some terrific books published around the 40th anniversary of this 1969 event, but the text of those books appeal more to third or fourth grade students and above. Now we have a book that details the event that is more accessible to non-readers and beginning readers. I would have shown the illustrations of the other moon landing books to really young readers, but after reading two pages of text, their eyes would have glazed over and their attention would be have been lost among the density of the details. As you can see from the portions displayed above and below, Eight Days Gone has a great rhythm that grabs young readers.
Eight Days Gone will provide a platform for many rich discussions about space exploration with young readers. For moms and dads at home, the rhythm of the book makes it a great bedtime story. I'm jealous because I would have liked to have read this book with my daughters when they were younger. For teachers, you can use Eight Days Gone for lessons on descriptive writing, sequence, and character. If you want to develop a lesson on bravery, I think this book would be a good place to start.
More in-depth details are provided in the author's note along with a photograph of the lunar module ascending.