The Space Walk by Brian Biggs. PICTURE BOOK. Dial (Penguin Random House), 2019. $18. ISBN 9780525553373
BUYING ADVISORY: PRE-K, EL (K-3) – ADVISABLE
AUDIENCE APPEAL: AVERAGE
Astronaut Randolph is bored. He wants to go out for a walk, but Ground Control insists he does his chores first. “And don’t talk to strangers” comes a final order, but a moment too late. Randolph is already outside. He takes pictures of some space objects and then with a robot-looking alien. Later, safely back in his ship, tucked into a sleeping bag bolted to the wall, he can’t wait till tomorrow.
The pictures are adorable (though the pale maleness of the astronaut may limit the book's appeal for some readers). Randolph’s space capsule is illustrated in muted teal and peach tones with lots of flat white spaces, while outer space is filled with colorful planets, comets, and stars of all sizes that pop against an inky black background. And there is no sound in outer space. The several pages of his space walk contain no words. He communicates with the alien with hand gestures and facial expressions. Students will delight in the similarities they see between the conversations and interactions in the story and those in their own lives, making this book a good one to use when discussing self-to-text connections.
P.K. Foster, MLS, elementary school teacher-librarian