Posted in Early Reader, Non-Fiction, Preschool Reads

Explore life On the Space Station!

on the space stationOn the Space Station: A Shine-A-Light Book, by Carron Brown/Ilustrated by Bee Johnson, (Jan. 2016, Kane Miller), $12.99, ISBN: 978-1-61067-411-9

Recommended for ages 4-8

Take readers on a trip to outer space, where they can discover what astronauts do in space: how they sleep and exercise, for starters; we also get a glimpse into some of the work astronauts do on board the space station: working robotics, making repairs, even calling home!

On the Space Station is one of the books in Kane Miller’s Shine-A-Light series, where see-through pages allow readers to shine a light – a flashlight, or simply holding the page up to a light source – behind the page to reveal a new piece of information about the picture! A great next step for little ones who love the excitement of lift-the-flap books but are ready for something more, Shine-A-Light books continue working with the concept of object permanence for younger readers while adding a new dimension of interactivity to older readers. The books ask a question on one page; the child is able to discover the answer for his or herself by illuminating the page. The highlighted image has an expanded explanation on the next page.

shine a light_2

shine a light_1

The contrast between black and white images on the left and color images on the right will keep readers’ attention; explanations are black and white, concrete; activity and exploration is in color, provoking the imagination. The artwork is wonderful and fluid, giving kids an idea of the weightlessness of space contained within the space of a page.

My 3 year old loved this concept, and yes, this book has entered the regular rotation, too. The language is great for young audiences; direct, with fun “flicks”, “swishes”, and “wheees!” to add some zing to the nonfiction text. This could make for a fun storytime book, too – I have to figure out how to smoothly shine the light onto the page without the book flopping down as I hold it up!

As I said regarding The River, I worry about this one in circ. The paper is a good quality stock, but I have visions of pages being yanked and torn as little hands hold them up to the light. I may buy a set to keep in storytime reference, because I love this concept and think the kids will, too. Classrooms and home collections will really benefit from these.

Kane Miller is knocking my socks off with the quality of material they’re putting out for kids now! I’m becoming an unabashed Kane Miller fangirl, with good reason. Stay tuned for more!




I'm a mom, a children's librarian, bibliophile, and obsessive knitter. I'm a pop culture junkie and a proud nerd, and favorite reads usually fall into Sci-Fi/Fantasy. I review comics and graphic novels at WhatchaReading ( I'm also the co-founder of On Wednesdays We Wear Capes (, where I discuss pop culture and geek fandom from a female point of view.

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