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Zita the Spacegirl, Book One: Far from Home
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Zita the Spacegirl, Book One: Far from Home (Zita the Spacegirl #1)

3.98 of 5 stars 3.98  ·  rating details  ·  7,282 ratings  ·  638 reviews
Zita's life took a cosmic left turn in the blink of an eye.

When her best friend is abducted by an alien doomsday cult, Zita leaps to the rescue and finds herself a stranger on a strange planet. Humanoid chickens and neurotic robots are shocking enough as new experiences go, but Zita is even more surprised to find herself taking on the role of intergalactic hero. Before lon
Hardcover, 182 pages
Published February 1st 2011 by Turtleback Books
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Lynn Kidd I enjoyed this very much. The story plot kept you going wanting to know what would come next. I truly enjoyed the detail in the graphics. I had my 16…moreI enjoyed this very much. The story plot kept you going wanting to know what would come next. I truly enjoyed the detail in the graphics. I had my 16 and 13 year old also read this book during their Christmas break from school. My 16 year old said it was a cute book and she actually enjoyed it. That is a major compliment since it is not her normal book of choice. My 13 year old was excited to find a girl hero. Id recommend this book for sure. As a matter of fact we are donating our copy to the Childrens Hospital Library in Atlanta. (less)
Mary Catelli There are in fact two more books.

Whether there's going to be a fourth. . . I don't know.
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Community Reviews

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I run a bookgroup for kids between the ages of 9-13. Like a number of American children in the 21st century, these kids have an overwhelming palate for good graphic novels. I can hand them Robot Dreams or Ghostopolis or Rapunzel's Revenge, it doesn't matter. Whatever the title, they devour these books in less than an hour and come hounding me for more. The market simply doesn't exist to satiate their perpetual GN hunger. In fact, far fewer really worthwhile comics for kids come out than you migh ...more

When Zita accidentally-but-culpably sends her best friend to another planet, she girls up and rushes off to rescue him.

Super-cute! Almost too cute. And most of the elements aren't all that original. But somehow, still awesome!
When it comes to originality, Zita is playing in the shallow end of the pool. Nearly every element, from basic premise (girl whisked to far away and strange land) to character (giant animal companion) has been seen somewhere else before. Even the art feels familiar, strongly reminiscent of Raina Telgemeier. This is not, in and of itself, a bad thing. There are far worse artists to call to mind, and far worse inspiration sources.

What makes this book so darn entertaining is the execution, which i
Timothy Ward
Reviewed with pictures at Adventures in SciFi Publishing

Graphic Novels have found a way into my pile of books through their simplicity and ease on the eyes. Most people can relate to the young desire for books with pictures. Ben’s art for the Zita the Spacegirl books does a fantastic job of combining action, humor and worldbuilding. The story begins with Zita and a friend discovering a device in a crater that zaps them into another world far away. When they get there, Zita is separated from her
I love sharing books. Obviously. However, certain books create a blazing fire inside my mouth. Words bounce out at record speed. Some students wonder if they will witness spontaneous human combustion. Should they fetch the nurse? Eventually, they realize it is just Mr. Schu ranting about the next BEST BOOK. How does it affect circulation, you ask? The book will have a waiting list--guaranteed. Thank you, Ben Hatke, for getting me fired up about Zita the Spacegirl.
The Basics

Zita and Joseph see something fall from the sky and decide to investigate. It’s some sort of device, and when Zita activates it, it pulls Joseph into another world. She follows, but Joseph’s already been kidnapped by aliens. So now it’s Zita’s job to rescue him.

My Thoughts

Let’s get the good out of the way first, because there is plenty. The artwork is very cute, very well-done. The friends that Zita makes along the way are varied and interesting and adorable. The humor hits a lot of hi
I would possibly rate this more highly had I not just read an absolutely amazing graphic novel which had a dual audience. While my six year old quite enjoyed this one, she is not reading books on her own yet, and this one was a bit of a challenge to read aloud. When reading graphic novels to an emerging reader I get her to explain what's happening in the pictures (because she is more than capable of reading those), but one thing I noticed about asking her to do that is that each picture/scene/ko ...more
Mary Catelli
A cheerful, youthful space opera in a graphic novel. Which opens with a G.K. Chesterton quote.

Zita has stolen her friend Joseph's notebook and is running away from him -- when they stumble on a meteor in a crater. Zita goes down and finds an alien artifact with a Big Red Button. When she pushes it -- over Joseph's cautions -- nothing happens. For a bit. Then a warp opens, and Joseph is hauled through by these tentacles. (Not octupus. Like very large black pipe cleaners.) Zita bolts. After a bit,
Cat Russell  (Addicted2Heroines)
I'll admit that my first impression of Zita the Spacegirl was that it looked a little too young and cutesy for me. It arrived courtesy of a publicist who has recently provided me with some really amazing stories. I've come to learn that when she says something is good, I better read it. So I dove right in and found myself enjoying this a lot more than I expected.

The story follows a girl named Zita whose friend is abducted when she unknowingly opens a gateway into another world. Using a device fi
Holy crap, I love this book. In the spirit of The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Zita is transported to an extremely foreign world and embarks on an epic journey, picking up wildly diverse companions along the way. Backs are stabbed, redemption is gained, creepy encounters are triumphed over, and a tonne of wacky characters are met.

On first glance, I expected this to be a pretty vanilla and tame fluffy kids comic book, but there is darkness here. There's a particularly freaky scene which borrows much f
I'm on the Great Stone Face Committee in New Hampshire, and this book is on our current possible nominee list (shh, don't tell). We had a very heated argument as to how to judge the writing in a graphic novel, because it obviously has less text than a full length novel. I fully believe that graphic novels can tell just as powerful of a story as any other form of novel, and I tried to argue that with someone who clearly doesn't care for graphic novels, so it was basically like me talking to a ver ...more
Seth Hahne
Zita the Spacegirl

Recently, it's come to my attention that maybe I'm not really a fan of science fiction. I may not even be a fan of adventure. I've found that the idea of a science fiction world isn't enough to spark my interest. A world populated by robots? A dystopian future of genetic manipulation? Star-spanning empires and the rebels that seek their liberation from those empires? I always have a sense of been there and done that. The ideas just don't excite me like they once may have—I presume that decades a
Nicola Mansfield
Such fun! I absolutely loved Zita! What a fantastical, exciting world in which she finds herself. A quick read for me that had me turning the pages with complete joy from start to finish. I can't believe I waited this long to read the book. Kids will absolutely love this fun sci-fi romp and I can't wait to read her next adventure.
Fun clever adventures for kids--but any age. Zita's friend gets sucked into a strange portal and she feels responsible--so she follows to save him. Along the way she make friends and saves more people and becomes a hero. It's the start of a great trilogy of books that are all out, and hopefully more on the way. Get it! Read it!

...and the sequels are all very fun as well!
An excellent space adventure for kids! Reminded me of di Terlizzi's Wondla books, but instead of having the creatures and robots described to us, we can look at Hatke's wonderful pictures, and so the story just zips along. Really creative and fun, perfect for kids who like adventure, science fiction, or even just want to try their hand at reading comics!
Jonna Gjevre
I enjoyed this comic very much. It has a pleasing Doctor Whovian quality about it and features a spunky young girl who willingly enters a trans-planetary wormhole to rescue her best friend. The comic has some very interesting storytelling techniques, with lots of indirection and subtle passages that reward an attentive reader. I've given it only four stars because I think this comic works well for older children, but the mix of a extremely young heroine and a very dangerous situation could be a ...more
LPLD 5th booktalk science fiction
Let’s pretend something for a minute. I want to get you in the mindset of this book, really there.
You’re running through a field, being chased by your best friend. Suddenly, you come upon a giant hole. A crater. And there’s something smoking down in the center of it. It looks like a meteoroid but you’re not sure. And it looks like something’s poking out of it.
Your best friend suggests you guys go report what you’ve found to someone. You laugh, and ask WHO? You’
I wish they would translate in Finnish these wonderful children's or middle grader's graphic novels from the excellent publisher First Second. Unfortunately the publishers seem to have forgotten the pre-teens and teenagers here in Finland.

And when that is said, Zita the spacegirl on ihastuttava avaruusseikkailu tytöille ja pojille. Zita löytää kaverinsa Josephin kanssa kummallisen kaukosäätimen, joka ei tunnu toimivan. Hetken päästä Joseph kuitenkin tempautuu jonnekin tuntemattomaan. Zita säikä
Sarah BT
I read a review of Zita the Spacegirl on Betsy Bird's blog and knew I had to check it out. Zita is a great new addition to middle grade graphic novels and I can't wait to start booktalking it. Zita reminds me a bit of The Wizard of Oz, Gregor the Overlander, and Astro Boy all rolled into one and set in space. Zita's adventures are exciting and fun and she meets a great cast of unique characters along the way.

One thing I love about graphic novels is the way the artist can connect the reader to t
Zita and her friend Joseph discover a strange object with a button while walking. Zita pushes the button and Joseph is taken by some strange creature into another world/dimension. Zita decides to push the button a second time to get to the other world so she can save Joseph. As Zita goes around this new world she discovers a few things. 1. The world is about to be destroyed by a giant meteor. 2. Some strange creatures are nice, some are not. 3. Joseph is going to be sacrificed in hopes of stoppi ...more
Zita is such a fun character and the illustrations in the book really bring her to life! This is a graphic novel that tells a great story about friendship and bravery. The characters are endearing, silly, creative and some are just a little bit scary; but Zita makes new friends and finds help in a foreign land. I encourage all readers to delve into this genre and discover what gems can be found in the graphic novel category. Although the main character is a girl, her friend is a boy and the cre ...more
Justin G
well, I just read Zita the Spacegirl and it is a pretty good book. It has an interesting cast and settings. Zita used to be an ordinary girl until she and her friend find a mysterious red button. Zita's friend is abducted by a creature that looks like a black squid in a diving helmet.

Zita finds out that she has been warped to a far off planet that looks like a giant mall of all species of aliens and no humans. She meets a flute playing humanoid, named Piper (who sort of looks like the author in
Jan 31, 2011 Brenda rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: 8-10 year olds who love comic books, science fiction, fantasy
Recommended to Brenda by: Goodreads First Reads Program
I won this book through the Goodreads First-Reads giveaway program. So, a big "Thank You" to Goodreads, the author and illustrator and the publisher for this book! I thoroughly enjoyed reading this comic book from Ben Hatke. Zita is a spunky girl full of curiosity who stumbles onto a device that sends her friend Joseph off into space. Zita is determined to help Joseph and decides to follow him. One of the fun aspects of this book is the companions that Zita finds as she travels to rescue her fri ...more
Angelica Garcia
I really liked this book and very impressed of it, I thought it was going to be a weird book because of the cover but you know what they say don't judge a book by its cover. This book ended up being my favorite book yet. My favorite part is when they where in the sewers and she was cry then the trolls came thinking she was a leaking pipe and to fix a leaky pipe you need to tell it good news but they told her that the world was going to end in 3 days =D.
Kari Ramirez
This is a cute adventure series that is loads of fun to read, but not much appeal for adult readers except for the just the sheer fun of it. I love the creatures (Zita's spaceship is probably my favorite) and the expressions Zita makes at times. This is the perfect series for Emma who loved Cleopatra In Space!
Well, this just charmed my socks off. I laughed out loud several times. While the girl-goes-to-new-world-and-seeks-to-return-home-with-help-of-motley-crew-of-new-friends story will be familiar, it's a comforting kind of familiar, spiced up with creative villains, dialogue, and magic. Let's just say I really want my own tube of doorpaste.

If Zita looks familiar, you may have seen her in the anthology Flight: Explorer. Fans of Amulet, Bone, and Jellaby should love Zita!
Like a space opera version of wizard of OZ.

On reflection, I think I know why I didn't like this more. As much fun as Zita is, she does not have any female friends. Or even female adversaries. In other words, this book does not pass the Bechdel test.
I don't want to deminish this series which is good in alot of ways, but I'm just pointing out an aspect that will limit it's appeal to girls. Even in the Wizard of Oz, Dorothy has Glinda the Good Witch, and The Wicked Witch of the West, two strong fe
Alyson (Kid Lit Frenzy)
Last year, I discovered Kazu Kibuishi's Amulet, Book 1: The Stonekeeper and promptly went on to read the next two books in the series. Now I am stuck waiting until the fall for a new book to come out. And then I discovered Ben Hatke's Zita the Spacegirl. I'm so happy. Check out my review and all the fun little extra's here:
Zita accidentally sends her best friend off to some distant part of the universe, and of course she has to go rescue him. To my amusement, he is The Chosen One of a prophecy, and we get to watch as it plays out, coming true...sort of.

Adventure, cleverness, and an extensive cast of aliens who would appear at a Monsters Inc casting call.

Thank you to everyone who insisted I needed to read this. You were right. And I totally want to be Zita for Halloween. With a giant mouse.

Library copy
I am the age of most grandmothers and some great-grandmothers. I can't imagine reading this book or sharing this book with an elementary-school-aged girl. The plot starts when Zita behaves thoughtlessly and as a consequence puts her friend in harm's way. Then she decides she has to rescue him (ego, ego, ego). Various adventures take place with space-creature sidekicks who seem to have almost no distinguishing features of personality or character, unlike those creatures whom Dorothy travels with ...more
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Ben Hatke is an author and illustrator of graphic novels and picture books. Most notably he is the creator of the Zita the Spacegirl graphic novel series.

He posts art and stories online at:
More about Ben Hatke...

Other Books in the Series

Zita the Spacegirl (3 books)
  • Legends of Zita the Spacegirl (Zita the Spacegirl, #2)
  • The Return of Zita the Spacegirl (Zita the Spacegirl, #3)
Legends of Zita the Spacegirl (Zita the Spacegirl, #2) The Return of Zita the Spacegirl (Zita the Spacegirl, #3) Julia's House for Lost Creatures Little Robot Hatke Family Adventures Vol. 1: Tales from the Bohemian Highway

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