Professor Wooford McPaw’s History of Astronomy by Elliot Kruszynski

One of the joys of blogging is that I never know quite what is going to arrive in my post box, and recently I was delighted to find a copy of the children’s book Professor Wooford McPaw’s History of Astronomy by Elliot Kruszynski.

I’ve previously reviewed another of Elliot’s books, Special delivery, here.

Professor Wooford McPaw’s History of Astronomy by Elliot Kruszynski was published by Cicada Books on 5th May and is availale for purchase in all good bookshops and online including here.

Professor Wooford McPaw’s History of Astronomy

This second book in the Wooford McPaw series takes on the subject of the cosmos and everything within it. In his distinctively humorous, somewhat subversive tone, Elliot Kruszynski (in the guise of the Prof) looks at how our understanding of our place within the universe has evolved from the days of Ancient Greece, to the discoveries of Copernicus and Gallileo, through to Newton and then to Einstein and Hawking. In and amongst these stories, we find out about how the universe may have been formed, the birth and death of stars, different types of galaxies, our own solar system and the mysteries of dark matter and dark energy.

Krusysnki’s comprehensive but easily understood texts are brought to life in comic-style panels with plenty of dialogue and discussion bringing the subject alive, and providing a refreshingly new take on the broadest of all subject matters!

My Review of Professor Wooford McPaw’s History of Astronomy

A dog professor explains astronomy!

I can’t review History of Astronomy without first commenting on the super quality of the hardbacked book. It’s beautifully produced with a thick, robust cover that would make it ideal for home or classroom use. The illustrations that accompany the text are bright, colourful and strike just the right balance between cartoon style and maturity for a reader aged 7-11.

The text is perfectly balanced to image so that there isn’t an overwhelming amount to read, but that said, my goodness is this book packed with facts and there’s an excellent and useful glossary at the end. History of Astronomy covers 5BC to the present day and even looks into the future with possibilities for astro-physics giving all kinds of useful information and catalysts for further study and research. I can imagine children’s imagination being so captivated by History of Astronomy that they become obsessed with the subject and the book would be a fabulous addition to KS2 classrooms. It could support science and technology as it is, but equally literacy is enhanced as vocabulary is challenging but made accessible. History projects might spring from the mentions of the Ancient Greeks, Newton and Einstein for example. At the risk of sounding sexist, I think History of Astronomy could be just the book to engage boys in reading too. I loved the fact there is a simple game to play at the end of the book too so that children could share this in peer reading and have fun at the same time. There’s also some very witty retorts from Professor Wooford McPaw’s sidekick Teley that add to the fun aspect.

History of Astronomy is a smashing children’s book. Not only did I enjoy reading it, I learnt new things too. What could be better than that?

About Elliot Kruszynski

Elliot Kruszynski is a London-based writer and illustrator who has worked with clients including the New York Times, Air BnB, Camden Brewery and Deliveroo. He illustrated and designed Bleep Bloop and Spot the Bot (Laurence King, 2019) and has two books in development with Walker/Candlewick (titles TBC).

You can follow Elliot on Twitter @EKruszynski and Instagram.

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