'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Saturday 6 November 2010

Review: Australian Backyard Astronomy

Australian Backyard Astronomy is not only for star-gazers. It's absolutely perfect for budding scientists and nature lovers. Superbly designed, the book features both existing and new illustrations, and lists all pictures used from the National Library’s collection at the back of the book.

Opening with a chapter entitled Maps in the Night Sky, readers are taken on a journey to the heavens to learn about the way stars are laid out around our planet. The chapter also covers fascinating information on globes and maps, and how the constellations are named. A helpful table outlines many of these names, along with a pronunciation guide and meaning.

In The Solar System, kids learn in much more detail about the format of our planets and sun, with information on outer planets (and what happened to poor Pluto!), asteroids, meteors and comets.

Following chapters then cover the life and death of stars and what’s beyond the solar system. Rounding out the book are places for junior astronomers to visit and things to do. Teachers and parents will also be thrilled with the section on activities and learning.

Intelligently written but totally accessible, the book is studded with glorious projects (need to decipher an alien message?), eye-opening pockets of information and a stunning line-up of visuals, this is one cool book that blows nerdy-stigma into outer space.

I’m starry-eyed.

Title: Australian Backyard Astronomy
Author: Dr Ragbir Bhathal and Jenny Bhathal
Publisher: National Library of Australia, A$24.95RRP
Publication Date: 13 August 2006
Format: Soft cover
ISBN: 9780642276322
For ages: 8+
Type: Information Book

This book can be bought online