Astro-Nuts Mission One: The Plant Planet by Jon Scieszka, illustrated by Steven Weinberg

Published by Chronicle Books

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Summary:  Planet Earth narrates this graphic adventure about four super-powered animals sent by NNASA (Not the National Aeronautics and Space Administration) to find a new planet that will support human life.  Blasting out of Thomas Jefferson’s nostril on Mount Rushmore, the four discover the Plant Planet, which at first seems like an ideal environment. AstroWolf, SmartHawk, LaserShark, and StinkBug each use their special talents to analyze the atmosphere and life on the planet.  Although their initial reports to NNASA are promising, the planet ultimately ends up being hostile to animal life, and the four heroes barely escape. If the last few pages are any indications, it looks like the team will be sent to explore The Water Planet in mission #2.  Includes notes about the collage art used for the illustrations. 220 pages; grades 2-5.

Pros:  Kids will love this wacky graphic novel with plenty of action, adventure, and bathroom humor, and will also learn a little about climate change and other science along the way.  

Cons:  The ultimate fate of the Plant Planet seemed a bit harsh.

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