Happy Lunar New Year, readers! What more serendipitous opportunity for us to talk about the moon than in the first days of this auspicious time?
This wonderful picture book details the way the moon orbits around the earth and how we experience it, both visually and via the tides. In prose that’s as carefully chosen for precision as for beauty, astronomer and science editor Jung Chang-hoon discusses how we observe the moon and why it appears the way it does at different points in the calendar. The text is definitely suited for the scientifically-minded child. I have to admit that there were parts that felt a little over my head even. My planet-loving middle child loves this, however, particularly the flashlight experiment that’s included here to help understand the process of waxing and waning better.
My favorite parts — the terrific anecdotes on Korean culture in relation to the moon aside — were the gorgeous illustrations by award-winning illustrator Jang Ho. The depictions of heavenly bodies are as exquisite as expected, if not outright demanded, by children’s books on the subject.
But it’s really the terrestrial landscapes, featuring Korean people and places, that made me glow with happiness at more Asian representation in the American children’s book market. It’s so great to read thoughtful, beautiful works in translation (in this case, ably translated from the original Korean by Paige Morris) that also afford representation to kids like mine.
Definitely snag this book for your scientifically-inclined child, or really for anyone of any age who wants to know more about the moon and its phases. Bonus points for helping promote diverse representation in the process.
The Moon Tonight: Our Moon’s Journey Around Earth by Jung Chang-hoon & Jang Ho was published today January 24 2023 by Blue Dot Kids Press and is available from all good booksellers, including