Book: Chicken in Space
Author: Adam Lehrhaupt
Illustrator: Shahar Kober
Age Range: 4-8
Chicken in Space is a new picture book about a chicken who is not like the other chickens. Zoey dreams of bigger things, and makes plans accordingly. Her specific dream in this story (one senses that there could be more) is to ravel to outer space. She has a loyal sidekick, a pie-obsessed pig named Sam, and she tries to enlist other animals to accompany she and Sam on their quest. But in the end, Zoey and Sam venture alone into the skies for a great adventure.
The personalities of the animals come through clearly from Adam Lehrhaupt's dialog-heavy text, particularly for Zoey and Sam. Like this (0ver 3 pages):
"Clara," said Zoey, "come to space with us."
"You don't have a ship," said Clara. "You can't go to space without a ship."
"Not a problem!" said Zoey. "An opportunity!"
"Zoey always finds a way," said Sam.
"Look, Sam! I found a ship!" said Zoey.
"Of course you did," said Sam.
Of course Shahar Kober's illustrations help to bring the characters to life, too. Zoey is priceless, with her aviator's hat. Sam wears a cute little hat, too, while an apparently timid mouse friend has round wire-rimmed glasses. Later page spreads use tilting perspectives and large colorful fonts to convey particularly dramatic moments.
Chicken in Space celebrates the power of imagination and the importance of friendship, both in a humorous, kid-friendly way. There is just the right amount of goofiness (and balloons) to keep things fun. Kids will gobble it up, I think, and hope for Zoey and Sam to have other adventures.
Publisher: HarperCollins (@HarperChildrens)
Publication Date: May 17, 2016
Source of Book: Review copy from the publisher
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