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Reach for the stars!

Reach for the stars!

Reach for the stars! image

It takes a big imagination and lot of brain-power to reach the Moon!

Here are some of our favourite books featuring astronauts, scientists, and all-round geniuses, from the Space Chase collection.

Take a look and you just might find your next Summer Reading Challenge read…

Lightning Mary by Anthea Simmons

One stormy night, a group of villagers are struck by lightning. The only survivor is a baby – Mary Anning. Ignoring other people’s taunts, Mary faces danger to bring back valuable treasures to help feed her family.

Mary must depend upon her unique courage and knowledge to fulfil her dream of becoming a scientist in a time when girls have no opportunities for such ambitions.

Corpse Talk: Ground-Breaking Scientists by Adam Murphy & Lisa Murphy

Adam Murphy interviews the dead famous scientists who changed the world – getting their stories straight from the corpses’ mouths!

Reading Corpse Talk: Ground-Breaking Scientists is like having history injected into your brain! It guarantees laughs, surprises, and a whole host of the most astonishing achievements you’ll ever discover. Don’t miss out on the biggest thing to hit history since Horrible Histories!

Marshal Babs Bungalow said:
This book interested me because it taught me about people who did things that changed the world and made our lives so simple. I like the way it’s set out because not all non fiction books are laid out like a comic. I would recommend it to everyone who likes humour and science.

Astro Girl by Ken Wilson-Max

Astrid has always loved the stars and space. “I want to be an astronaut!” she says.

While Mama is away, Papa and Astrid have fun acting out the challenges an astronaut faces on a space mission – eating food from a tube, doing science experiments, living and sleeping in near-zero gravity. Astrid can do it all!

Then it’s time to meet Mama at the airbase. But where has Mama been?

Space Ace by Eric Brown & Tony Ross

Billy’s grandfather is a retired astronaut who likes to take Billy on trips around planet Earth. But when the ship’s computer takes over, they suddenly find themselves zooming away on a grand tour of the Solar System!

When the computer system fails, Billy’s grandfather is forced to pilot the ship manually through the treacherous asteroid belt! Will they make it home alive?

Prince Sandwich Desperado said:
Superb book. Loved it when my dad read to me.

The Long-Lost Secret Diary of the World’s Worst Astronaut by Tim Collins & Sarah Horne

Meet Ellie – an enthusiastic, bumbling teenager who is fascinated with Mars. When a misunderstanding lands her in the astronaut training program for the first human mission to Mars, Ellie is determined to prove her worth.

Superintendent Flash Piccalilli said:
I loved it, it was full of space trainees and they were amazing and so was the new astronaut. I thought it was one of the best space books in the world.

Max Einstein: The Genius Experiment by James Patterson

Max Einstein is a typical 12-year-old. She…

Goes to college every day
Plays speed chess in the park
Builds inventions that help the homeless
And talks to Albert Einstein

All normal stuff, right?

Until one day when Max is recruited by a mysterious organisation! Their mission: solve some of the world’s toughest problems using science. She’s helped by a diverse group of young geniuses from around the globe as they invent new ways to power the farthest reaches of the planet.

But that’s only if the sinister outfit known as The Corporation doesn’t get to her first…

Matilda’s How to be a Genius: Brilliant Tricks to Bamboozle Grown-Ups by Roald Dahl & Quentin Blake

Matilda Wormwood is a genius – her brain fizzes and bubbles with brilliance. She outwits her gruesome parents, and even her terrifying head teacher, the monstrous Miss Trunchbull.
Now, you too can baffle, bewilder and bamboozle your friends and family!

Astound them with feats of calculation, scientific miracles, incredible creativity and fiendishly clever tricks, all with simple, step-by-step instructions.

Inspired by Roald Dahl’s terrific tale Matilda, this is the perfect book for budding brainboxes everywhere!

Duchess Pinky Owl said:
It was a very good book because it had loads of ideas you could try yourself

Have you read any of our recommendations? Write a review and let everyone know what you thought!

What are your favourite books about astronauts and space science?
Share your picks with other Space Chasers in Chat

Information for adults


Visit our School Zone to access free resources and Challenge ideas for your class.


Visit our Home Zone, full of useful Challenge information for parents, grandparents and carers. For information about supporting reading in the early years visit our Pre-School Zone.


Visit our Library Zone to find libraries near you running the challenge, and how to take part.