cover image My Place in Space

My Place in Space

Robin Hirst. Orchard Books (NY), $13.95 (0pp) ISBN 978-0-531-05859-6

The authors cleverly blend fact with fiction in this unusual picture book. When an arrogant bus driver asks Henry and his sister Rosie if they know where they live, Henry answers affirmatively, and goes on to tell the driver a good deal more than just his address: the boy launches into a lengthy and lucid explanation of the solar system, solar neighborhood, galaxy and supercluster to which Earth belongs. As he talks, accurate and beautiful renditions of the solar system (and beyond) are seen overhead. Meanwhile, down below on a local street, there are many eye-catching happenings--in a building identified as ``Bank'' a robbery occurs; the culprits are apprehended and jailed in the same building, which has been changing names and is now suitably labeled ``Tank.'' A number of subtle and not-so-subtle alterations take place in the whimsical, double-tiered pictures that combine the work of two skillful artists. The result is an imaginative book that will prove both instructive and entertaining. Ages 4-7. (Mar.)