I enjoy reading chapter books of all sizes, and recently I read the young reader chapter book Astronaut Girl: Journey to the Moon by Cathy Hopkins and Ellen Vandenburg. This was a fun young reader though not the best for this age group I have read published in 2021.

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The summary, from Amazon:

Can Astronaut Girl save the day with a little help from science? Find out as she and her space crew make their debut in this chapter book series!

Val, aka Astronaut Girl, is just your typical eight-year-old scientist. She has her own laboratory and conducts experiments with her crew–her cat and baby brother. She loves science and knows everything about outer space. That’s why she’s surprised to learn that her new neighbor Wallace would rather talk about a fake space show than about real missions. But when Astronaut Girl, Wallace, and the Astro crew get lost on their own lunar adventure, they must all work together to find their way back home.

Exciting, easy-to-read books are the stepping stone a young reader needs to bridge the gap between being a beginner and being fluent.

Buy Astronaut Girl: Journey to the Moon here.

Val’s nickname is Astronaut Girl. She knows everything about space. I loved how this book seamlessly shared good information on space, the Apollo 11 mission, astronauts, and the moon, all because Val is so knowledgeable.
Val meets her new neighbor, Wallace, and the two start playing. Wallace is a sci-fi geek trying to win a contest by writing an episode for his favorite TV show, and Astronaut Girl keeps insisting that the logic from Wallace’s show makes no sense. After making a wish, they wind up on the moon, where they learn about space together before journeying back home.
Honestly, I just wasn’t a fan of the plot of this one. It was so unclear to me whether these two kids were playing pretend or somehow actually made it to the moon in a sort of “Freaky Friday” situation where wishes came true. I did enjoy Val’s strong personality. Finally, I read an ARC, so it’s possible the illustrations were unfinished, but they didn’t do much for me.
Overall this is your average early reader with some strong characters. It was a 3 star read for me.

Find out more about how I rate books here.

Journey to the Moon (Astronaut Girl, #1)Journey to the Moon by Cathy Hapka
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I enjoyed that this one included lots of facts about space, Apollo 11, astronauts, and the moon. I just wasn’t a fan of the plot.

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Book Club Questions

  1. Was Val helpful to Wallace in helping him write his episode? How so, or how was she not?
  2. What did you learn about space during Astronaut Girl’s adventure?
  3. What other adventures do you think Val and Wallace will get up to?
  4. Do you have a dream job for when you grow up?


Interested? Buy Astronaut Girl: Journey to the Moon.
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peacefully reading