The Moon Over Star
Written by Diana Hutts Aston
Illustrated by Jerry Pinkney
This is a heart-warming story of a rural family during the days of the first moon landing. The kids are so excited that a rocket has been launched to the moon. Their imaginations provide hours of fun as they play mission control and astronaut. All the while they keep watching the television coverage of the event. Finally, it is the night of the moon landing and everyone sees the great moment. Grandpa thinks that the space program is a waste of money but is glad that it helps the kids have dreams. With terrific touches of realism, this story evokes the spirit of that historic time.
Jerry Pinkney’s gorgeous illustrations of the moon and Earth are spectacular; as are his depictions of the family spending time together. What I found interesting when we finished the book was that the author is actually white and Pinkney’s illustrations are what made it a story about a black family, hence the CSK illustrator award. It just goes to show that some stories transcend ethnic background.
In addition to the historical content regarding the moon landing, it also shows how the girl relates to her grandfather. The art is really beautiful and while it isn’t an informational book per se, it could be used along with non-fiction books in a unit about space exploration.