#Nonfiction Monday Curiosity: The Story of a Mars Rover

Let’s explore some of the fantastic nonfiction children’s books that have been nominated for 2018 Cybils awards.

Today we’re featuring the picture book, Curiosity: The Story of a Mars Rover by Markus Motum.


Told in the first person by the rover herself, the text explains the project in detail. Readers discover the initial concept, how the rover was constructed, about the trip to Mars, how the rover was deployed, and the tools she uses on the planet to look for evidence of life.

Markus Motum is an artist by training and his unusual mixed-media illustrations are what capture the reader’s attention about the book, starting with the big red planet Mars set against the blackness of space on the title page. He uses geometric shapes like triangles, rectangles, and pyramids in his landscapes. The shapes create a feeling of other worldliness that carries throughout.

The only negative aspect of the book is that the text is often very small and on some pages the text is blue or another dark color against a black background. The small font allows for a lot of information to be packed into a page, but it will be difficult for struggling readers with eye problems to make out the words, and it will be impossible for teachers or librarians to try to read aloud in front of a group.

Curiosity: The Story of a Mars Rover will be a good choice for kids fascinated by our solar system and the rovers that help us explore it. It would also be a useful resource for research projects and classroom use because it is packed with information. Check out a copy today.

Suggested Activity

Check NASA’s Mars for Kids website to learn more about Curiosity and for hands on activities.

This video explains Curiosity’s mission.

This one shows Curiosity’s position on Mars in an interactive way. Cool!

If you’d like to read more, try our growing list of children’s books about the planets and solar system at Science Books for Kids.

Age Range: 8 – 12 years
Publisher: Candlewick; First Edition edition (March 13, 2018)
ISBN-10: 0763695041
ISBN-13: 978-0763695040

Disclosure: The book was provided by our local library. Also, I am an affiliate with Amazon so I can provide you with cover images and links to more information about books and products. As you probably are aware, if you click through the highlighted title link and purchase a product, I will receive a very small commission, at no extra cost to you. Any proceeds help defray the costs of hosting and maintaining this website.


Looking for more children’s nonfiction books? Try the Nonfiction Monday blog.