Friday, 28 August 2015

ReaditDaddy's Second Book of the Week - Week Ending 28th August 2015 - "The Official Astronauts Handbook" by Louie Stowell and Roger Simo with foreword by Tim Peake (Usborne Books)

Our second book of the week is something we've been hopping up and down in anticipation of seeing and here it is! The amazing "The Usborne Official Astronaut's Handbook" by Louie Stowell, Roger Simo and Tim Peake!
Sometimes you have to wonder whether, as a parent, gently pushing your own interests onto your children is a good idea. Poor Charlotte never really had a chance when it comes to space exploration and an interest in the interstellar because both my wife and I are huge space fans, and Charlotte's Grandad is a real life rocket scientist (well actually he worked on the amazing SOHO Solar Observation Project for the ESA but we like calling him a rocket scientist all the same and I'm sure he rather enjoys it too!)

Thankfully Charlotte LOVES space and loves learning more about the cosmos, but particularly loves to know all about how humans took those first few faltering steps beyond our own planet and out into the inky black unknown.

So what's it like being an astronaut? In "The Usborne Official Astronaut's Handbook" Louie Stowell tackles the subject with passion and aplomb, answering tons and tons of questions that children might have about space exploration and space science, thanks to brilliant sections on the preparation for and the actual daily tasks that budding astronauts will face.

Charlotte is nuts about the International Space Station - the idea that there is a man-made place orbiting our planet where space scientists and astronauts live and perform all sorts of cool and exciting experiments while looking down on our world from a couple of hundred miles up. This book details all the amazing things that go on up there as well as talking about some of the more - er - functional aspects of astronaut life (yes, you'll even find out how astronauts go to the loo and it sounds pretty tricky to say the least - we imagine there's a lot of leg-crossing going on up in space!)

The International Space Station - Beautiful, isn't it?
Other sections in the handbook deal with the history of space and the first pioneers who followed the first animals put into orbit (including super-dog Laika! YAY!)

For a fairly small book that could easily be tucked into a bag or rucksack to tote around with you, it's mighty and packed to the gills with glorious details and fantastic illustrations (courtesy of Roger Simo). Real-life astronaut Tim Peake provides a thoughtful foreword in the book too, underlining the importance of our future commitment to exploring space and continuing our passion for finding out just what's out there.

So what's inside the ISS? Take a look at your new office if you make the grade!

Utterly absorbing and brilliant!

Charlotte's favourite bit: A naughty space flight director playing tricks on hapless astronauts for April Fool's Day (Behind you!!!)

Daddy's favourite bit: It was actually very hard to wrestle this out of Charlotte's hands to get a good look at it myself, it's absolutely packed with fascinating information presented in really cool ways - very clear to see that everyone involved in this LOVES space as much as we do! Well done all!

(Kindly sent to us for review by Louie / Usborne Publishing)

"The Official Astronaut's Handbook"

Written by Louie Stowell with Foreword by Tim Peake

Illustrated by Roger Simo

Published by Usborne Publishing

Release Date: 1st June 2015