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The Way Back Home by Oliver Jeffers (2007)

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The best thing about this book is the illustration, I find that I am a huge fan of Oliver Jeffers illustrations. I thought that the story was cute and it showed that if you work together you can fix any problem. However I do not think the storyline/plot was very strong. I would use this in a young classroom as a fun read-a-loud, I don't think that it would fit in to any core subjects very well. I might use it in art class as a study of Oliver Jeffers techniques.
  krbarton | Mar 11, 2014 |
A little boy becomes stranded on the moon and a young martian helps him return home again. The Earthling returns the favor when the little Martian boy becomes stranded. Nice illustrations and a sweet story just right for preschoolers that teaches cooperation and working together. ( )
  DiamondDog | Mar 29, 2013 |
A boy flies his airplane into the sky and gets stuck on the moon. On the same night, an alien's spacecraft breaks down and he is also stuck on the moon. Together they work out a plan for getting back to their homes and while they are excited to get back, they are also unsure if they will ever get to see each other again.

Cute story with very detailed pictures - they make the story as rich as it is. Could pair with Boy + Bot for a compare/contrast. ( )
  agrudzien | Sep 24, 2012 |
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 plane begins to sputter and quake, its fuel tank on empty. The boy executes a daring landing on the moon . . . but there’s no telling what kind of slimy, slithering, tentacled, fangtoothed monsters lurk in the darkness! (Plus, it’s dark and lonely out there.) Coincidentally, engine trouble has stranded a young Martian on the other side of the moon, and he’s just as frightened and alone. Martian, Earthling—it’s all the same when you’re in need of a friend.
Review from: Amazon.com
  Scopuslrc | Aug 2, 2012 |
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 of fuel. "Now the boy was stuck on the moon. What was he to do?"

He was alone and afraid, but he didn't know that high above him somebody else was in trouble too. Martian's engine had broken and he crash landed his flying saucer on the moon. "The boy heard noises. The Martian heard noises. They both feared the worst."

Eventually their eyes got used to the dark and both the boy and the Martian realized that not only had the met someone else in trouble, but they weren't alone anymore. They worked out a plan to fix their machines and get back to their respective homes.

The boy dropped down into the sea (because the Earth was closest) and he swam home. By the time he got home he was tired, so he rested a bit. And then his favorite TV show came on, so he rested a bit more. All this time the poor Martian is waiting alone in the dark. In the middle of his favorite show the boy remembered what he was supposed to be doing. He ran off and got what he needed and climbed to higher ground. He called out to the Martian and a rope was lowered.

They fixed each other's ships, said good-bye and thank you, and wondered if they'd ever meet again. A little while later the boy receives a walkie talkie in the mail.

The Way Back Home is another lovely and whimsical picture book from Oliver Jeffers. This one though is a bit sadder in my opinion. I'm with the story the whole way and then at the very end the walkie talkie confuses the boy and he leaves it. The last image on the page is the Martian calling "hello" through the walkie talkie. It just seems sad to me, but other than that the book is fun.

Way Back Home is a lovely book to read and to look at. Humor, adventure, loneliness, and friendship are wrapped up into one glowing picture book package. I give it 4 stars.

Read full review HERE ( )
  AbundanceofBooks | Aug 4, 2011 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0399250743, Hardcover)

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 plane begins to sputter and quake, its fuel tank on empty. The boy executes a daring landing on the moon . . . but there’s no telling what kind of slimy, slithering, tentacled, fangtoothed monsters lurk in the darkness! (Plus, it’s dark and lonely out there.) Coincidentally, engine trouble has stranded a young Martian on the other side of the moon, and he’s just as frightened and alone. Martian, Earthling—it’s all the same when you’re in need of a friend.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:29:44 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Stranded on the moon after his extraordinary airplane takes him into outer space, a boy meets a marooned young Martian with a broken spacecraft, and the two new friends work together to return to their respective homes.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 6 descriptions

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