My youngest daughter has been on a space kick recently, so I thought I’d bring you a round up of picture books about Pluto. Pluto has always been such an underdog, even before it was kicked off the planet roster, that it tends to be many people’s favorite. Ready for a book list that’s out of this world?
There are plenty of informative, trade non-fiction books about Pluto for super-interested kids or science reports. However, today I’ll just be focusing on fiction and creative non-fiction picture books that feature our favorite former planet.
Fiction Picture Books about Pluto
Pluto Gets the Call by Adam Rex illustrated by Laurie Keller
Maybe I shouldn’t play favorites, but if you want to know my favorite book on this list, this is it. It’s got charm, humor, and heart. It introduces the planets, some science, all the while casting Pluto as a relatable character you just want to cheer for. SCROLL TO THE END OF THIS POST FOR A CHANCE TO WIN A COPY! (Ends 2/19/21)
A Place for Pluto by Stef Wade illustrated by Melanie Demmer
This book is a perfect combination of a simple story with some scientific facts. It explains why Pluto isn’t a plant (or asteroid, comet, etc). A healthy dose of planet-related puns makes this book a winner!
Non-Fiction Picture Books about Pluto
Heart on Pluto by Karl Jones illustrated by Andrew J. Ross
This book is a clever cross between fiction and non-fiction. Told from the perspective of New Horizons, a NASA robot sent to photograph Pluto, we see charming illustrations both of space and kids researching Pluto back on earth. And, of course, New Horizons discovered Pluto’s distinctive heart-shaped mark. No wonder we love it so much.
If Pluto Was a Pea by Gabrielle Prendergast illustrated by Rebecca Gerlings
This book demonstrates visually, with familiar objects, Pluto’s small size compared with the sun and planets. The illustrations depict some children camping in a back yard and show the different items next to Pluto’s pea.
The Girl Who Named Pluto: The Story of Venetia Burney by Elizabeth Haidle
The Girl Who Named Pluto tells the true story of the girl who picked the name for the former ninth planet. Venetia was a girl interested in many things, including space and mythology. She chose Pluto since he was the god of the cold, dark underworld in Roman mythology. Interestingly, Venetia visited an observatory to see Pluto through a telescope for the first time the day before her eighty-ninth birthday. At that point in her life, Pluto was no longer considered a planet.
Pluto’s Secret: an Icy World’s Tale of Discovery by Margaret A. Weitekamp and David DeVorkin illustrated by Diane Kidd
Pluto’s Secret tells the story of Plutos discovery and reclassification in some detail. But it employs a few fictional elements, such as personifying Pluto, to jazz up the text. For kids wanting the whole history this book fits the bill.