In Space; Moon Landing the race for the Moon
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This issue’s cover is from a stunning new picture book, Mary’s Secret by David McKee (Andersen Press, 0 86264 909 9, £9.99). An ecological fable about doing without cars, McKee’s story with its bright pictures full of well observed detail is set within Mary’s cheerful family and at her school. His bold, painterly illustrations use the page so confidently and dextrously that their quirky, decorative perspectives seem entirely natural. Thanks to Andersen Press for their help in producing this September cover.
These are two 'eyewitness' accounts of not so recent events in space. 'The History News' has a far greater chronological scope, starting at ptolemy and ending up with Sojourner on Mars. Signal events are portrayed by 'contemporary' newspaper feature articles so cardinal points are effectively punched home and the temptation to 'now read on ...' is virtually irresistible. Personally, I care very little about what goes on out there but this headlines and highlights approach, coupled with occasional intimate insights, as in high class tabloid journalism, had me hooked in no time and the book should more than earn its keep on library shelves.
Moon Landing examines with a far more pedantic approach a smaller sector of the space saga and the DK spread by spread presentation kills the urge to read on pretty smartly, although there is a wealth of information to be had here for those with sufficient personal incentive to seek it out. In their back-flap blurb the publishers say author Stott 'is eagerly awaiting our return to the Moon'. Me too, DK - you've done enough here. I see the book's senior editor is one Scarlett O'Hara which leads me to observe that as to whether anyone buys it or not frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn.