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Comets, Stars, the Moon, and Mars: Space Poems and Paintings

4.04  ·  Rating Details  ·  316 Ratings  ·  98 Reviews
Blast off with Douglas Florian's new high-flying compendium, which features twenty whimsical poems about space. From the moon to the stars, from the Earth to Mars, here is an exuberant celebrationof our celestial surroundings that's certain to become a universalfavorite among aspiring astronomers everywhere.
Includes die-cut pages and a glossary of space terms.
Hardcover, 56 pages
Published April 1st 2007 by HMH Books for Young Readers (first published January 1st 2007)
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90 Miles to Freedom by K.C. Hilton2001 by Arthur C. ClarkeThe Moon is a Harsh Mistress by Robert A. HeinleinThe Call of the Wild by Jack LondonFour Past Midnight by Stephen King
Night Sky
70th out of 269 books — 45 voters

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Nov 02, 2010 Kathryn rated it really liked it
Recommended to Kathryn by: Chandra
The illustrations are really fun and inventive--I loved how there were little cut-out illustrations of the various gods with the planets they are named after, etc. I liked some of the poems better than others, but overall I thought they worked well and had a nice blend of wonderment, science and fun. And the scientific note at the back seemed good to me, though I don't really know enough about astronomy to be a solid judge on that issue. Overall, I think this is a fun and worthwhile introduction ...more
Lisa Vegan
Jun 17, 2010 Lisa Vegan rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: introducing kids to astronomy and non-fiction poetry
Recommended to Lisa by: Chandra
This book provides a fun frolic of a tour through the universe. It’s a superb introduction to the science of astronomy and to non-fiction poetry too.

The poems are very simple, and will be appealing to young children. They’re not outstanding but they’re pleasant and informative, and I loved how the “a galaxy” poem was formed in a spiral. Very cool. (The poems also put me in the mood to listen to Holst’s The Planets, and thinking of that music did distract me slightly from the book’s poems.)

The il
Feb 10, 2014 Teresa rated it it was amazing
I admit to being a sucker for science books regardless of target age. Science married to poetry elevates both to a new level. Because of that, I found it easy to fall in love with this picture book. Naturally, I adore the paintings, too, which were enhanced by the clever and well-placed cut-outs.

My favorite poems were "the universe" and "a galaxy." "the solar system" reminded me of the funny Sidney Harris cartoon about Kepler explaining what an eclipse is to his peers. :)

The only thing I had a
Sep 04, 2014 Brenda rated it liked it
Recommends it for: introducing kids to astronomy and non-fiction poetry
Recommended to Brenda by: Picture Book Club November Selection
Shelves: picture-books
What really stands out in this book of poems is the clever illustrations and cut outs that show glimpses of the next page. The vibrant colors and shapes really add so much to the wonderfully written poems. Each poem touches on the subject of the planets, comets or the universe in a very easy flow that will appeal to younger children. My overall favorite is “A Galaxy” which twirls into a spiral. Included with the book is a “Galactic Glossary” and “Bibliography and Links to Further Reading.”

This is one of my favorite Douglas Florian books! It's inventive, whimsical, AND full of accurate information on space "stuff." Each planet gets its own poem along with the sun, moon, comets, and various other space elements. The collage illustrations add quite a bit to the poems: they contain all sorts of subtle allusions to the poem's content and references as well as other information not mentioned. For instance, the illustration of Venus shows names like Beethoven and Goya on the planet; did ...more
Nov 14, 2010 Jessica rated it it was amazing
Shelves: poetry
Comets, Stars, the Moon and Mars is a book comprised of several poems and paintings about space. The table of contents allows the reader to peruse the poems of their choice based on the aspect of space in which they are interested. Each page has a circle cut-out, to represent the corresponding planet detailed in the poem. The cut-outs are cleverly placed in different areas of each page to keep any reader engaged and eager to learn about space. To appreciate the artwork in this book, one must all ...more
Crystal Marcos
Nov 11, 2010 Crystal Marcos rated it liked it
I liked this book. (A Picture Book Club Read I have to admit it has been awhile since I read anything about outer space. I enjoyed the illustrations and the cutouts more than the actual poems. I read this book out loud to my daughter and it didn’t flow well in a couple spots. My daughter is too young to appreciate the book to its fullest. She did enjoy the curious cutouts which she poked her finger through on occasion. She also liked the rhyming aspect o ...more
Mar 13, 2010 Samantha rated it really liked it
Shelves: poetry
This picture book written in poetic form would be perfect for introducing a science unit on the solar system. I would use this book for a wide range of elementary age students. There is great factual information and vocabulary used in the poems. The pictures are great stylized representations of the plants.

My favorite part of this was the section on Pluto. First I was struck by the up-to-date information, then I laughed at how it was actually presented.
“Pluto was a planet.
But now it doesn’t pa
Mary Ledom
May 09, 2015 Mary Ledom rated it it was amazing
Comets, Stars, the Moon, and Mars: Space Poems and Paintings is a wonderful book filled with so much information in the form of poems and pictures. The reason I loved this book and would read it in my future classroom is because it was incredibly informative in a fun and spunky way that students will love. This is a perfect book to explain what is around us in space in the form of poetry. I enjoyed some of the poems more than others but they all had a reason and it was easily shown.
I would read
Apr 12, 2014 Jill rated it it was amazing
Douglas Florian is a poet and painter who has created a number of books for children, but this one is my favorite. This charming and humorous collection of poems about space is the perfect way to teach children in the course of entertaining them.

He takes us through our own solar system, with a double-page spread for each planet:

The Earth
Two-thirds water.
One-third land.
Valleys deep.
Mountains grand.
Sky of blue.
Clouds of gray.
Life here, too -
Think I’ll stay.”

Pluto is included, but never fear: this
Amy Carr
Aug 16, 2008 Amy Carr rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-book
A collection of poems about all things related to space. The illustrations were really creative and favorite part! The poems were a little "forced" but an interesting way to introduce astronomy to children! If you have a child interested in planets, black holes, comets, etc., this would be a really fun read! It is also a great way to help children remember facts about the planets, sun, moon, etc.
Brittany Lee
Oct 30, 2013 Brittany Lee rated it really liked it
Shelves: fab-40-file, poetry
Genre- Poetry
Awards- None
Grade Level- 5-6

This book is a wonderful way to incorporate science and poetry together. This book is about the solar system. While teaching science you can also teach poetry to the class. A follow up activity would be to give the students each a planet and write their own poem on that planet based on their knowledge of their specific planet.
McKinzie Elton
I would use this book throughout the year, maybe reading one or two poems a week. For example, at the end of a lesson on the moon, I would read the moon page in this book. As a class we would brainstorm characteristics about the moon gleaned from the lesson and the poem. Students would then use those characteristics to write a poem about the moon and draw a picture.
Hollianne Wieland
Dec 01, 2015 Hollianne Wieland rated it it was amazing
Shelves: tl-307, poetry
Comets, Stars, the Moon, and Mars is a collection of twenty Poems by Douglas Florian about outer space. The poems are educational and vary in style, but a majority of the poems are rhyme poems. I enjoyed the writing of the book because it has informative language to teach the reader about space, but also rhymes, which I believe can help with memorization of the planets. Each poem smoothly flows from one to the next. The poems could stand on their own, but also work well as a book because of how ...more
Gianna Mosser
Aug 30, 2014 Gianna Mosser rated it really liked it
Very astute poetry collection. The facts are current, the rhyme scheme accessible but varied, and it was perfect for our afternoon at the planetarium.
Aug 14, 2014 Megan rated it it was amazing
Douglas Florian is rapidly becoming one of my favorite children's poets. "Comets, Stars, the Moon, and Mars" is chock full of his usual droll, witty and simple anecdotes; this time about space. While the poetry is cute and funny, kids are also learning about the solar system at the same time. The unique collage-style illustrations compliment the verse, and I love the cut-outs that preview the next page. One of my favorites:


Pluto was a planet.
But now it doesn't pass.
Pluto was a planet.
(NS) Brea M
Nov 16, 2009 (NS) Brea M rated it really liked it
Shelves: poetry
This large-format book looks at astronomy through the magnifying, clarifying lens of poetry. Each broad double-page spread features a short, accessible poem about a subject such as the sun, each of its planets, a comet, a constellation, or the universe, set within an impressive painting. A concrete poem entitled "a galaxy" is a curling spiral of words set against the midnight-blue sky and surrounded by other galaxies. Stamped type, cutout pages, collage elements with printed papers, and sweeping ...more
Dec 02, 2010 David rated it really liked it
Douglas Florian features twenty whimsical poems about space. From the moon to the stars, from the Earth to Mars, here is a celebration of our celestial surroundings that's certain to become a universal favorite among aspiring astronomers everywhere. (Goodreads Summary)

Comets, Stars, the Moon, and Mars: Space Poems and Paintings by Douglas Florian is a 2007 poetry book about space & the planets which should be very accessible to children. The poetry is short and fun to read. Two of my favorit
Oct 11, 2011 Jennifer rated it really liked it
Shelves: poetry
This week I read the book Comets, Stars, the Moon and Mars. This is a Poetry collection of themed poems all relating to space. Nearly all the poems in this collection are rhyming poems. They carry a musical quality that is not only fun to read, but informational. Here is an example from Comets, Stars, the Moon and Mars a poem called “the sun”: ”Ninety-three million miles from Earth. Nearly a million miles in girth.” There are also many examples of alliteration in the book, for example: “Jupiter’ ...more
Oct 14, 2011 Wendy rated it really liked it
Shelves: poetry
I love the way the poem conveys information about space in poetic form with terrific illustrations to augment the experience. Illustrations have a great use of color, collage & cut out. The text is also used creatively and the word choice conveys the essence of the poem. "A Galaxy" poem is written is a spiral (use of form), reflecting the structure of some galaxies. In "The Universe" the word "empty" is stretched out in ways makes you read the word in ways to get a sense of the expanse both ...more
Elise Marshall
Dec 03, 2012 Elise Marshall rated it it was amazing
This is a book filled with poems. Each poem is about a different planet, along with the galaxy, universe, comets, constellations, black holes and the great beyond. Each poem has information in it about what it is talking about. For instance the poem about Earth talks about how much water and land covers the Earth, how life is on Earth. Each planet has a different style of poems. Pluto was a lyrical poem; it seemed to have a rhythm that went along with the poem. I think this is a great book to re ...more
Oct 06, 2012 Daniela rated it really liked it
Grade Level: K-2
Main Characters: N/A
Setting: Outer Space
This is a fun, informational, and witty book of poems about astrology. Topics of each poem include the planets, starts, black holes, galaxies, and everything else you can find in outer space. Each topic has a double-page spread, and the artwork is incredible! Florian paintings are surreal and he uses a collage style, with some pages containing cut-out holes giving a preview to the next page. The poems incorporate facts about e
May 01, 2016 Courtney rated it it was amazing
Shelves: rll538
This book of poetry is an amazing and in-depth exploration of outer space. It would be a great addition to a Kindergarten or first grade classroom for studying the solar system. Along with incredible visuals, this book also contains descriptions of all aspects of outer space with a lengthy glossary in the back. It is loaded with vocabulary words and touches on concepts from constellations to the galaxy to black holes and each of the planets and our moon!
Megan Howard
Oct 24, 2015 Megan Howard rated it really liked it
This book of poems has a lot of whimsy and some really fun illustration and style choices that add to its charm. Each poem introduces young children to various aspects of astronomy in a fun and easy way. The book also includes a glossary at the end and some other resources that would be perfect for classroom use. I could definitely see myself using this book while introducing some of these basic concepts.
Dec 10, 2012 Christi rated it it was amazing
Genre: Poetry

Summary: This book is a beautifully illustrated collection of rhyming poems in several different styles. He has shape poems, rhyming couplets, triplets and several others.


A. Fluency and rhyming
B.This book is all about the universe and space and even has a glossary in the back to define the key terms. I is fun and informative and the rhythmic nature of rhyming poetry is usually good for fluency because it has a natural flow.
C. the universe
The universe is every place,
Samantha Lindsey
Oct 11, 2015 Samantha Lindsey rated it it was amazing
Shelves: poetry
This is an awesome book to teach you about things in the sky. It has a different poem on every page about about the different things in the sky. It talks about the phases of the moon, the different planets, minor planets, the black hole, and so much more. It give great simple definitions and way for children to understand them and learn about them. The illustrations show great examples of what they look like as well. The book would need to be broken up into a few parts because it is length, but ...more
Oct 19, 2014 Tina rated it it was amazing
Reading Level: Intermediate
Genre: Poetry
Review: This is a beautifully illustrated book about space. Each poem focuses on a planet, a star, or another space-related concept, like constellations. There is quite a bit of advanced vocabulary. I think this collection would be a great companion when teaching kids about the planets. The poetry also has a nice flow to it, as well.
Sarah Sammis
Jun 09, 2012 Sarah Sammis rated it it was amazing
For the astronomy project I was required to include one book of poetry. I chose Comets, Stars, the Moon and Mars: Space Poems and Paintings by Douglas Florian. Along with the poetry, it has delightful collage style illustrations.

It covers the solar system with a poem per planet. Pluto's poem tells how it has been "fired" or re-classed as a dwarf planet. The other minor plants have their own page. After finishing with Pluto it has a poem about comets, one about the constellations, one for black h
Feb 08, 2013 Kelly rated it it was amazing
Title: Comets, Stars, and Moon, and Mars

Author: Douglas Florian

Recommended Ages or grades: 6 - 10

This book of poems is all about the different planets. Each poem talks about a planet, the moon, stars, Mars, Pluto, Saturn, Venus, the Black Hole, Uranus, and others. The poems are short and simple to read for children in the early primary grades and they are cute poems, “Speedy, nimble, quick, and fast, Round the sun it rushes past. Always racing, on the run… You’d run, too, so near the sun.” I hig
Sep 22, 2010 Kim rated it really liked it
Shelves: verse-poetry
This book presents poems about the universe, astronomy, and our solar system. The poems are short, concentrated, current, informative, and humorous. Specific terms are blended with made-up vocabulary. Many of the poems are filled with rhyme. Prose appears in a spiral for “a galaxy.” The illustrations are made with gouache, collage, and rubber stamps on printed brown paper bags. Several of the rubber stamps are foreign translations for the planet or star premiering in the poem. The illustrations ...more
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