By Author / Illustrator
Nosy Crow Ltd
Paperback / softback
How amazing would it be to have a dad who's an astronaut?Rocket launches, zero gravity, and flying through space like a superhero! Jamie Drake's dad is orbiting the Earth in the International Space Station and Jamie ought to think it's cool but he just really misses him...Hanging out at his local observatory, Jamie picks up a strange signal on his phone. It looks like alien life is getting closer to home. But space is a dangerous place and when his dad's mission goes wrong, can Jamie prove that he's a hero too?A cosmic adventure for anyone who's ever looked at the stars, from the author of The Many Worlds of Albie Bright.Cover illustration by Matt Saunders.
I came to this book with high expectations as I am a big fan of Christopher Edge, having loved the Twelve Minutes to Midnight series. I was not sure what to expect, and in fact my 10 year old stole the book away and read it before I did. In one sitting! I was surprised by how quickly I was sucked into the story. The text is slightly larger on the page and I got through quite a large chunk very quickly. Having worked in a school and having two school aged children, I found myself easily picturing the scenes as they look place. The story, as well as being engaging, had nice added scientific detail, which I appreciated. The family drama twist to the story came as more of a surprise to me than the space mission plot twist, but that could be because I've watched too much Doctor Who! There was sufficient peril to the story to grip you, but not so much that it would put off younger readers. Although my seven year old would probably not chose to pick up this book to read, I feel sure she would enjoy it, and I could see this being an excellent story to be read aloud in class to children as young as Year 3. The story moves at a good pace, there are interesting and some mysterious characters, and although there is an alien in the plot, somehow it does not feel too far fetched! I'm not quite sure how. In fact I found the alien a more believable character than the Grandad! Chrisopher Edge has worked as a teacher and some of the references in his book make his teaching experience clear. There are lots of things that could be taken from the story that are staples of the classroom - designing your own alien etc. I can see how it would be easy to link the book to a space theme / topic in primary school but the family element also adds a nice PHSE twist to it.
Suggested Reading Age 7+