It’s the summer of space! If you want to explore more this summer, we have the perfect books. Whether they’re blasting off to space or sailing around the earth, readers will be transported to whole new worlds.

Middle Readers

Rocket Main PB

Rocket Man: The Mercury Adventure of John Glenn
by Ruth Ashby

Ruth Ashby’s dramatic story of John Glenn’s near-disastrous mission in Friendship 7, that made him the first American to orbit Earth, also takes young readers through his small-town Ohio childhood, his extraordinary experiences as a fighter pilot in two wars, and his life as an astronaut in the prestigious and dangerous Mercury 7 program. The book concludes with Glenn’s successful career as a U.S. senator and his triumphant return to space in 1998 at the age of 77.


Countdown: 2979 Days to the Moon
by Suzanne Slade
illustrated by Thomas Gonzalez

Award-winning author and former mechanical engineer Suzanne Slade joins up with New York Times best-selling illustrator Thomas Gonzalez to tell the powerful story of the successes, failures, triumphs, tragedies, and lessons learned from Apollos 1 through 10 that led to the first Moon landing.

Seaman PB

SeaMan: The Dog Who Explored the West with Lewis and Clark
by Gail Langer Karwoski

Gail Langer Karwoski’s thrilling account of Lewis and Clark’s expedition with the Corps of Discovery, Seaman, and eventually Sacagawea, is full of accurate details drawn from Lewis’s own diary entries, and will draw readers into one of the most exciting chapters in American history.

Picture Books

Keep On

Keep On!: The Story of Matthew Henson, Co-discoverer of the North Pole
by Deborah Hopkinson
illustrated by Stephen Alcorn

Feel the chill of the North Pole in the dog days of summer with Matthew Henson, who was born just after the Civil War, a time when slavery had been abolished, but few opportunities were available for black people. As a child, Henson exhibited a yearning for adventure, embarking at age thirteen on a five-year voyage sailing the seven seas. Henson’s greatest adventure began when Robert Peary invited him to join an expedition to the North Pole. After many storms, injuries, and unimaginable cold, on April 1, Peary, Henson, and four Inuit men began the final 133-mile push to the Pole.

When Edgar Met Cecil

When Edgar Met Cecil
by Kevin Luthardt

Exploring can be hard, even if it’s just a new town.When Edgar’s family moves to a new town, everything seems strange and scary. The kids look different. They dress weird. They listen to bizarre music. They eat strange food. And the biggest, weirdest looking kid keeps staring at Edgar. What does he want? As Edgar soon learns, sometimes you have to rise above your fears to make a new friend. And sometimes that friend may be the last person—or alien—you’d expect.

Away with Words

Away with Words: The Daring Story of Isabella Bird
by Lori Mortensen
illustrated by Kristy Caldwell

Exploring was easier said than done in Victorian England. But Isabella persisted, and with each journey, she breathed in new ways to see and describe everything around her. Question by question, word by word, Isabella bloomed. First, out in the English countryside. Then, off to America and Canada. And eventually, around the world, to Africa, Asia, Australia, and more. This dashing picture book biography about the first female member of the Royal Geographical Society takes readers around the world with a daring nineteenth-century female explorer and author.

Find these books and more at your local libraryindie bookstore, or Barnes & Noble!