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Children's Nonfiction Astronomy

The Hubble Space Telescope

Our Eye on the Universe

by (author) Terence Dickinson & Tracy C. Read

Firefly Books
Initial publish date
Sep 2019
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Sep 2019
    List Price
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Sep 2019
    List Price

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Where to buy it

Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 10 to 15
  • Grade: 5 to 10


A beautifully illustrated, accessible beginner's guide to the Hubble Space Telescope.

Acclaimed astronomer Terence Dickinson and his longtime editor Tracy C. Read team up to explore the starry treasures in our galaxy and beyond as revealed by the Hubble Space Telescope.

Since Galileo pointed his telescope at the starry night in 1609 and discovered that the hazy patch above us was not a cloud but a "river" of uncountable stars -- the Milky Way, our home galaxy -- humans have been improving on ways to understand the cosmos. We've devised ever more powerful telescopes and placed them on mountaintops, far from the bright lights of cities. But the launch of the Hubble Space Telescope in 1990 was the first time we'd sent a telescope into space, beyond the distorting effects caused by looking through the Earth's atmosphere.

Orbiting roughly 350 miles above Earth and circling the planet more than 5,000 times a year, Hubble has made over 1.3 million observations, revealing the vast scope of the expanding universe beyond our solar system. In The Hubble Space Telescope: Our Eye on the Universe, young readers find out how this groundbreaking telescope gathers imagery and transmits it to Earth. This book shares what Hubble has taught us about the universe and explains its top discoveries. Chapters filled with the telescope's latest photography offer insight into:

stormy weather on our solar system's planets and moons and dramatic collisions in space

star clusters, nebulas and the Milky Way Galaxy

the Milky Way's galaxy neighbors

massive black holes and dark matter

planets beyond our solar system

star nurseries and glimpses of distant galaxies in deep space.

About the authors

Terence Dickinson, one of Canada's best-loved amateur-astronomy writers, gained renown for unraveling the mysteries of the cosmos. His down-to-earth style made him the award-winning best-selling author of 14 astronomy books, including NightWatch, The Backyard Astronomer's Guide, The Universe and Beyond and Hubble's Universe. The cofounder and former editor of SkyNews, Canada's national astronomy magazine, Dickinson was a recipient of the Order of Canada and two honorary doctorates. He died of complications from Parkinson's on February 1, 2023.

Terence Dickinson's profile page

Tracy C. Read is an editor and writer who has a special interest in nature and the environment. She lives in Kingston, Ontario.

Tracy C. Read's profile page

Editorial Reviews

An illustrated, accessible beginner's guide to the Hubble Space Telescope, this book shares what Hubble has taught us about the universe and explains its top discoveries. Young readers find out how this ground-breaking telescope gathers imagery and transmits it to Earth. Explore the starry treasures in our galaxy and beyond as revealed by the Hubble Space Telescope.

Canadian Children's Book Centre's Best Books for Kids and Teens 2020

A great addition for middle school libraries to spark interest in astronomy.

School Library Journal

This recommended book is a must for school and classroom science libraries.

Resource Links

This book is packed full of information about the Hubble Space Telescope, our solar system, the Milky Way Galaxy, galaxies beyond the Milky Way, and a brief glimpse of deep space. Every page is illustrated with stunning photos taken from the Hubble Telescope... This book is well written, tightly organized, and well designed.

Canadian Teacher Magazine

If you're hoping to kindle astronomical interest in a young person this holiday season, nothing succeeds like a collection of impressive images. Few can resist the visual splendour of the universe, but to sustain that spark, the photos need to be matched with lively, engaging and factual descriptions... Page after page is packed with stunning Hubble shots and accessible writing. Considering the book's modest price, it can serve as a nifty stocking stuffer for the curious youngster in your life

Sky New Magazine

An attractive work with copious colour images... A second read of The Hubble Space Telescope reinforced the information value of the book. The price is fair for a book of this size and with so many colour images. Recommended.

Canadian Review of Materials

Though most of the images come with descriptive notes, at one point the narrative is reduced to no more than identifying labels, which encourages lingering over the visual majesty on display. In an opening section, separate enough from the rest to have its own glossary, the authors describe each of the Hubble's instruments and introduce other space telescopes. Though in essence a boiled-down version of Dickinson's more-expansive Hubble's Universe (second ed. 2017), there is more than enough here to sate young sky watchers with an appetite for jaw-dropping space photography. "To Infinity and Beyond," indeed.


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