I don't understand all the positive reviews for this book or why teachers would put it on a book list for their students. The language is not appropriate for younger children. The book is very negative, the kids are mean to each other and even the counselor thinks something that I wouldn't type here because I think it would be censored.
My six year old son loves this book. I can see that it would not be right for every child. It's perfect for him because he is interested in space and can read at a high level but isn't interested in chapter books yet. There are a lot of words on a page and I think the average six year old would have difficulty reading it. He also loves How to Dig a Hole to the Other Side of the World by the same author. I wish there were more books like this.