From School Library Journal
Kindergarten-Grade 2AOriginally published in 1981, this title gets a facelift with the addition of some new information, including a brief list of Web sites, plus new illustrations. Though given to dogmatic statements like "The most important part of the solar system is the sun," Branley makes his points briefly and precisely, steering clear of distracting dialogue and side commentary. Also, rather than the more common one-planet-after-the-other tour, he groups together heavenly bodies, discussing temperature, size, and orbital length in comparative terms; the effect is to reinforce the idea of the solar system as a system rather than an assemblage of isolated elements. He finishes with instructions for a planetary mobile and several other simple projects. O'Malley creates a rudimentary story line in his illustrations, in which an African-American version of Ms. Frizzle guides a class around a planetarium, and inserts small astronomical photos into his cartoon scenes. Still one of the most basic books on the subject, this is a welcome replacement for the old edition.AJohn Peters, New York Public Library
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.
About the Author
Franklyn M. Branley was the originator of the Let's-Read-and-Find-Out Science series and the author of close to 150 popular books about scientific topics for young readers of all ages. He was Astronomer Emeritus and former Chairman of the American Museum of Natural History-Hayden Planetarium.
Kevin O'Malley has illustrated many entertaining books for children, including Too Many Kangaroo Things to Do! By Stuart J. Murphy, Cinder Edna by Ellen Jackson, and his own Carl Caught a Flying Fish.
Kevin O'Malley lives in Baltimore, Maryland.