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Zita the Spacegirl Hardcover – February 1, 2011


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Frequently Bought Together

Zita the Spacegirl + Legends of Zita the Spacegirl + The Return of Zita the Spacegirl (Zita the Spacegirl Series)
Price for all three: $43.03

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 7
  • Lexile Measure: 310L (What's this?)
  • Series: Zita the Spacegirl (Book 1)
  • Hardcover: 192 pages
  • Publisher: First Second (February 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1596436956
  • ISBN-13: 978-1596436954
  • Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 6.3 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (62 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #454,365 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 2–5—While exploring a meteoroid crater, young explorers Zita and Joseph discover an unusual device featuring a conspicuous red button. Zita's curiosity compels her to press it, only to discover that it summons an alien creature that instantly abducts Joseph. The fearless heroine follows him to a planet inhabited by Scriptorians, who intend to use him as a ritual sacrifice to prevent the destruction of their planet. In her quest to save her friend, Zita assembles a cadre of unusual cohorts: a giant mouse that she rides; an oversize bloblike creature named Strong Strong; a Heavily Armored Mobile Battle Orb known as One; and Robot Randy. Together they head off to the Scriptorians' castle to rescue Joseph. Along the way, she meets Piper, a fellow earthling traveling through space who becomes an important player in the story. Aptly named, he is part Pied Piper and part inventor but always a smooth talker who alternately assists and sabotages the mission. In order to save her friend, Zita must ultimately risk her own chance to return to Earth. With echoes of The Wizard of Oz, this charming, well-told story has a timeless "read to me" quality that makes it perfect for one-on-one sharing. Adults will enjoy the subtle humor and inside jokes, and children will love intrepid Zita and her adventures. The art is simply delightful: a realistic heroine surrounded by a world of bizarre creatures. Fans of the Flight anthologies (Villard) will cheer for the return of Zita.—Barbara M. Moon, Suffolk Cooperative Library System, Bellport, NY
(c) Copyright 2011.  Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

For no reason at all, a little red button crashes to earth while Zita and her pal Joseph are out cavorting around. Of course, no one could resist pushing a mystery button, which pops open an interdimensional portal that whisks Joseph away. Zita follows and lands on a delightfully bizarre alien planet, where she sees Joseph being captured by a tentacled, scuba-headed creature. She makes some allies, takes off after him, and zany mishaps and dashing adventures ensue. Any story in which one can escape prison with a tube of “doorpaste” (just like toothpaste, except that it makes magic doors appear when smeared on a wall) obviously puts more stock in wowing imaginations than satisfying logic, and it needs solid cartooning chops to back it up. Fortunately, Hatke’s got them, and he doles out an increasingly loony and charming array of aliens, robots, and unclassifiable blobs and hairy things for Zita (herself a cross between Ramona Quimby and a Matt Phelan waif) to encounter. It’s fun, plenty funny, and more than a little random. Kids will love it. Grades 3-6. --Ian Chipman

More About the Author

Ben Hatke is an artist, writer and comics creator. He is the creator of the Zita the Spacegirl graphic novels and a contributor to the Flight Anthologies. Ben learned painting through studying the Italian Masters and by training at the Charles Cecil Studios in Florence.

He lives and works in Front Royal, Virginia with his lovely wife and growing family. He loves swords and whistles and juggling and adventures. Breakfast is his favorite meal of the day.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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See all 62 customer reviews
The art is wonderful: Ben is a fantastic, talented and solid artist.
Ana Braga-Henebry
My 7 year old daughter read this book to me and my 5 year old daughter.
Issac
This is a graphic novel and one of the first ones I've read and owned.
Aimee Brown

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

45 of 46 people found the following review helpful By E. R. Bird HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on February 14, 2011
Format: Paperback
I run a bookgroup for kids between the ages of 9-13. Like a number of American children in the 21st century, these kids have an overwhelming palate for good graphic novels. I can hand them "Robot Dreams" or "Ghostopolis" or "Rapunzel's Revenge", it doesn't matter. Whatever the title, they devour these books in less than an hour and come hounding me for more. The market simply doesn't exist to satiate their perpetual GN hunger. In fact, far fewer really worthwhile comics for kids come out than you might expect. For every "The Secret Science Alliance" there are twenty cheapo faux mangas ready to clutter up my library's shelves. Fortunately, if you look in the right places you're bound to find something new and interesting. Now there is nothing seemingly original about some of the aspects of "Zita the Spacegirl". The storyline is familiar, the characters give you a sense of déjà vu, and the art feels very Matt Phelan/Raina Telgemeier-esque. That said, what author/artist Ben Hatke does well is dip into a wellspring of familiar ideas to bring us a new world that truly is its own beast. "Zita" earns her stripes. Good thing too, since your kids will undoubtedly be clamoring for more of her adventures when they get their sticky paws on this first.

Here are some basic rules governing meteoroids.
Read more ›
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By M. OBrien on April 13, 2012
Format: Paperback
We had to get two copies of Zita the Spacegirl by Ben Hatke because the kids love reading it so much that taking turns wasn't working well. My non-reader enjoys just the art and the older two have increased their reading confidence and ability through Zita and other graphic novels (such as TinTin).

They are intrigued by the characters and captivated by the story line -- the book has been a great hit.

We've pre-ordered the second book in the series, Legends of Zita the Spacegirl and they are all looking forward to its release.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Amy E. Feldstein on December 17, 2011
Format: Paperback
I purchased this graphic novel for my then 7 year old imaginative girl. This book is perfect for children with incredibly active imaginations. She was unable to put this book down. Read book over and over and over again. Still asks when the next book is coming out and frankly, so do I.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A. Reader on February 2, 2011
Format: Paperback
I heard about Zita the Spacegirl through a friend's blog, and even though I'm not a big comics person I decided to check it out. I'm so glad I did! This book is a joy of a ride--with a spunky character you totally root for (and who has depths to her that so many characters in this genre unfortunately don't have); a gang of pals, each one unique and funny and intriguing (a giant mouse with a mysterious past, for example); a plot that keeps you turning the pages without even noticing you're turning them...

The art is brilliant and brilliantly colorful, with terrific world-building and new details you find even on, say, the third read. This is a comic for both boys and girls, and adults too. No wonder it's gotten such good reviews in the press/blogs/Goodreads/MTV.com, etc. I can't wait for the sequel! Seriously, check this one out.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By S. Torode on February 1, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Ben Hatke has been one of my favorite young artists for a while, so I was excited to see this full-length Zita book up for pre-order on Amazon. And--wow to Amazon's service--my copy arrived on the release day, Feb. 1.

It's a visual feast from beginning to end, and a great story kids of all ages will love. At times it reminded me of "The Iron Giant" and Miyazaki's "Spirited Away"--here's hoping for a Zita movie next.

Get it in hardcover--it's worth it!
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Aimee Brown on February 1, 2011
Format: Paperback
What do you do when you find a little device with a big red button sitting in a hole? You get the device and push the button! At least, that's what Zita does. The next thing she knows her friend Joseph is gone, taken by who knows what! Zita follows, determined to save Joseph. Far from home, across the universe, on a far away planet, Zita meets monsters. But, she also meets friends who help along the way.

I LOVED this book! It took me forever (maybe a slight exaggeration here) to finally get my hands on it though. My kids swiped it up right away and it didn't surface again for days! My youngest (8) read through it twice and loved it. This is a graphic novel and one of the first ones I've read and owned. I won it through First Reads on Goodreads. I know, lucky, huh? This book was funny. I laughed right out loud several times. Which for me, is something. This is a "fun for all ages" kind of book. One you just love to share.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A. O'Neill on June 7, 2011
Format: Paperback
The other 5-star reviews are right on target here; I would only add that anyone who says this work is meant for children doesn't know how to enjoy a good graphic novel. While it's entirely kid-friendly, "Zita" wasn't created just for children; rather it was made with a child-like spirit.

Every page is its own little delightful work of art, a menagerie of fantastical creatures that immediately make you wish they were real, and living in your backyard. Not one single panel bores or begs to be skipped over. If you have any love at all for adventure, whimsy, or creative storytelling, "Zita the Space Girl" is worth every penny.
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