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The Way Back Home (The Boy, #3)
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The Way Back Home

(The Boy #3)

4.13  ·  Rating details ·  2,937 ratings  ·  310 reviews
From the illustrator of the #1 smash hit The Day the Crayons Quit comes an imaginative tale of friendship in a world where what makes us different isn't nearly as important as what makes us the same.

When a boy discovers a single-propeller airplane in his closet, he does what any young adventurer would do: He flies it into outer space! Millions of miles from Earth, the plan
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published April 10th 2008 by Philomel Books
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Average rating 4.13  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,937 ratings  ·  310 reviews

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Jul 06, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: kidstuff
Two of Jeffers' toothpick-legged characters get marooned on the moon, and must work together to figure out how each of them can get home. Cute, though not as endearing as some of the author's other books.
Sophia Triad
Apr 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Beautiful book. Very imaginative!
One of our favourite books lately.
A little boy finds an aeroplane in his closet and he flies to the moon, where he becomes friend with a Martian. They need to help each other and work with each other in order to go back home.
May 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
I'm on an Oliver Jeffers kick. This book is pretty adorable. A boy and an alien, both stuck on the moon, work together to problem solve. You can't really get more different than these two, so I love the underlying message and the ending is fabulous!
I have READ this book soooooooo many times at work it's not even funny anymore BUT I still LOVE the book so I say I'm pretty much winning! I've found this book to appeal to the younger set of children quite well...Aliens and humans..What's not to love even at an early age? The illustrations are awesome, lots of darkness because they're stuck on a moon but then the splash of colour also works very well and brightens up each page.

So, this story is about a little boy with a wicked sense
J. Boo
Nov 29, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: ds2
Boy finds a plane in his closet, flies to the moon, runs out of fuel, meets alien with flying saucer problems who crash lands, parachutes back home to get tools, climbs up rope back to moon...

I didn't find it interesting, nor was I fond of the illustrations, but DS#2 (age 3) seemed to pay attention.
Hugh Stuart
Oct 10, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I discovered this one last week in an RE seminar and instantly loved it. The art is sumptuous and quirky and its a really nice story about friendship and helping each other out. A small boy finds an aeroplane in his cupboard, goes for a wee flight and crashes on the moon. During the night a tiny martian has a similar accident and loses control of his spaceship also ending up on the same rocky satellite. The two are initially fearful of one another but become friends when they realise they have t ...more
Elaine Mullane
Aug 21, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: childrens-books
Another favourite contender in our bedtime reads! My son is currently obsessed with this because it features a plane, the moon and an alien.

An imaginative little story about a little boy who takes his airplane out and gets lost, and then finds solace in the company of someone else who has also been displaced. In an attempt to get home, these unlikely friends go to great lengths help each other out. A sweet little tale from one of our favourite writers and illustrators.
Oct 09, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: childrens
A book my 5 yr old as well as my twin 3 yr olds loved. A solid reading level 1 book, this cute story keeps all ages engaged with the bright colorful pictures and cute story. A fun space theme with a little twist at the end. My 5 yr old was tickled pink when he guessed the ending. A great addition to any children's library.
May 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-books
I really enjoyed this book...
Colby Sharp
Jan 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-book, space
I love Oliver Jeffers.
Rebecca Morris
Oct 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
I really enjoyed reading this book. This book follows a young boy who gets stuck on the moon as his plane ran out of petrol and becomes lonely as he is all alone. However, another boy emergency landed on the moon as his engine has broken down. The boys together think of a plan to get them both home again. This book highlights the importance of teamwork and friendship as the two boys become friends whilst creating a plan and as a team, they fix each other's plane and spaceship in order to get bac ...more
May 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-s-book
I love how the boy goes on grand adventures. I love how nothing is really impossible for him as long as he can think it up. The boy goes to the moon and discovers an alien whose ship broke down on the moon. The boy's ship ran out of gas, so obviously he floats back down to earth to collect items to help them both out. The alien lower a rope from the moon when the boy has the items they both need. I love the last page and how he has a package with a walkie talkie from the alien. It's so cute. Aga ...more
Katie Mote
Oct 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
This is a lovely book about a little boy who ends up on the moon and discovers a martian who is also stuck on the moon and how they work together to fix their space ships so that they can go back home. The illustrations are simple but effective in working alongside the text. I loved the theme of friendship throughout, how they welcomed each other into their lives to help and look after each other. This would be a lovely book to read with children
Sue Read
Sep 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
It is always important to carry a torch, but not so good when it stops working, neither is it very helpful when your engine breaks down. Luckily the boy and a friendly Martian both suffer engine trouble and met each other on the moon. They find a way of fixing each other's engines and after saying 'goodbye', go their separate ways back home. Will they ever find a way of keeping in touch?
Dec 25, 2017 rated it liked it
I enjoyed this book because I like space. I did not like this book because I did not like the part when the boy got stranded on the moon when he found a plane in his closet. Then, the plane ran out of fuel and crashed on the moon.
Dec 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
yes. another good one.
Dec 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
With baba, mama, and Hanalei on New Years Eve.

5 stars for sentimental reasons. :D
Sely Viladinia
Nov 14, 2018 rated it liked it
There are The Boy #1 and The Boy #2? Oh well.
An Abundance of Books
Jun 17, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Featured at An Abundance of Books

Jeffers uses mixed media (but still features the watercolor paintings that I love) to bring the boy's imagination to life in this new book. One day the boy was putting things back in his closet and he found a life sized airplane. (I never found stuff like this in my closet... granted I never really put my things away either.)

He takes it out for a spin and of course it's a perfect lift off. The boy soars as high as he can before his place runs out
Rosie Mulholland
Nov 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
The story explores the ideas of acceptance and diversity. The two characters are totally different from one another, but they become friends and help each other. Being helpful is consequently another theme within the book as they help each other so that they can go home. The book also demonstrates friendship, as even though the two characters are stranded, they make friends and work towards a common goal. Even after they have returned to their homes, they remain friends and still contact one ano ...more
Sep 13, 2011 rated it liked it
This book tells the story of a boy and a Martian who both get stuck on the moon, and then work together to fix their aeroplane and spaceship so they can both travel back home. At one point in the story, the boy jumps from the moon, into the sea on earth and swims back home. He rests for a while and watches his favourite TV programme, but then remembers he needs to go back to rescue the Martian.

I would read this to a Year 3 class. It would be possible to use this book to introduce the
Oct 11, 2011 rated it liked it
The Way Back Home has big dark illustration that I believe goes well with the story of the book. Because of this the book drew me in and even further when reading the book. The Way back home is about a boy who has a great imagination, finding a propeller airplane in his wardrobe. With this the boy decides to fly to the moon and finds that he has run out of petrol, being on his own he is slightly scared and lonely. He meets a Martian who is also stuck on the other side of the moon and also needs ...more
Jun 17, 2012 rated it really liked it
The Way Back Home is both beautifully written and illustrated. I like the fact that children could relate to the emotions of the young boy who flies an aeroplane that he finds to the Moon. Once he is there he realises her is stuck, far away from home. The story explores the problem of feeling fear and loneliness and offers the resolution of a friend called Martin, who is also from another World and stuck on the Moon. The two boys become friends and work as a team to ensure their safe return home ...more
Emer Mattimoe
Oct 20, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This book tells the story of a young boy who finds a plane, flies it to the moon and gets stuck. It explores many feelings such as the little boy feeling alone and afraid. A Martian also end up stuck on the moon also and they find each other and realise that they are not alone anymore. They work together to get home safely. In doing so they become friends and worry will they ever see each other again when they are ready to go home. The book explores the development of relationships and friendshi ...more
Elizabeth Jamieson
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
Every time I read this book I thoroughly enjoy it. The illustrations really make it feel as though you are part of the book and the language chosen enables children to engage in the visual imagery. The book highlights kindness, willingness and friendship. It conveys how we are not alone and with teamwork we can help one another. This book equally shows problem-solving skills and unity; once they had found each other,"They weren't alone anymore."
Nov 08, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
On the scientific side, this picture book was all wrong. On the imaginary side, it was pretty good. So I've mixed feelings about this, because going on the moon by plane or meeting a green Martian... really? (tells the girl who has no problems with flying unicorns and fairies...). Otherwise, the drawings were cute and the friendship was nice, as in the previous book in the series.
Jennifer B.
Jun 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
A sweet book with imagination.
Greg Scowen
Feb 20, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kids
Not even close to the standard of other Jeffers books. As some others have noted, the story is disjointed and doesn't make sense. Even younger children question some of the logic. I recommend Lost and Found as a much better option for teaching the importance of friendship.
Feb 08, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: library-book, youth
This story reminded me so much of how I told stories as a child. It's written with a child's logic on how to solve problems, and as such was charming. The last page broke an Awwwww... out of me.
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Oliver Jeffers' work takes many forms. His distinctive paintings have been exhibited in galleries worldwide, and HarperCollins UK and Penguin USA publish his award-winning picture books, now translated into over 30 languages.

In 2007, Jeffers was the official illustrator for World Book Day, and in 2008 Lost and Found became Oliver's first book to made into animation by London-based Stud

Other books in the series

The Boy (4 books)
  • How to Catch a Star (The Boy, #1)
  • Lost and Found (The Boy, #2)
  • Up and Down (The Boy, #4)