Review: Field Trip To The Moon by John Hare and Jeanne Willis
The aliens watch while a group of children is guided around the moon. They stick together for safety … all except one boy who slips away to draw pictures of what he sees. When he gets left behind, the aliens creep out to watch him, and together they add some colour to the moon.
A story of friendship, exploration and caring for the places we visit.
With the 50th anniversary of the Moon landing in July 2019, a whole spate of books has been published, from fact files to real-life stories of space scientists to stories set in outer space. This book falls into the latter category, imaging what a school trip or day out might look like if we could travel en-masse into space.
The story is told in rhyme and balances both the gravitas of major exploration and the light excitement of a day trip. The one child who does their own thing will be familiar to anybody who has lead a group of children outdoors (or been a child on a school trip) and I was pleased to see the story showing that this can be lead by curiosity rather than trouble. Although the boy is in the wrong, he is the only person who takes enough time to look back and admire the view of the earth.
When the aliens come out, the real fun begins.
Their world is grey, and they have never seen so many colours as the boy holds in his crayon packet. A new game begins and soon the boy is less frightened about being left behind.
The illustrations have a futuristic feel to them, and the reader is always looking forwards on to the moon landscape as if they were standing up close to the boy. This sense of being right there makes the story even more exciting.
This would be a lovely story to get readers interested in the Moon anniversary and to help them imagine where the future of space travel might lie.
Thanks to Macmillan Children’s Books for my gifted copy. Opinions my own.