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  • Published: 4 April 2023
  • ISBN: 9780143779520
  • Imprint: Picture Puffin
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 32
  • RRP: $21.00

Abigail and the Making of the Moon

Abigail always thinks of big questions! Join her on a discovery mission to find out where the Moon came from, and how it stays in the sky.

A book for every budding astrophysicist - join curious Abigail as she discovers how the Moon came to orbit the Earth.

One clear day, Abigail thinks of a question and knows that she won’t be able to do anything else if she doesn’t have an answer to it.

Daddy,” she asked, “where did the Moon come from?”
“From the Earth, Abigail,” replied Daddy. “The Moon was once a part of the Earth.”
“It was?” Abigail asked. “But how did it get in the sky? And how does it stay in the sky? And why do we only ever see one side of the Moon?”

What follows is an evocatively simple story within a story explaining how the newborn Earth collided with another planet, and how gravity acts like invisible hands reaching out and keeping the Moon spinning around the Earth, the Earth spinning around the Sun, and the Sun spinning around the galaxy. And of course by dinner time, Abigail has thought of a new big question…

Read all the books in this award-winning series by Matthew Cunningham and Sarah Wilkins!
Abigail and the Birth of the Sun
Abigail and the Restless Raindrop

  • Published: 4 April 2023
  • ISBN: 9780143779520
  • Imprint: Picture Puffin
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 32
  • RRP: $21.00

About the authors

Matthew Cunningham

Matthew Cunningham wrote his first masterpiece in kindergarten. Unfortunately, as he had yet to grasp the concept of writing in straight lines from left to right, ‘The Clock’ (as it was so cleverly titled) read more like a bowl of alphabet soup than a book. Since then, he’s turned his hand to a number of different styles of writing. A passionate and dedicated historian with a Doctor of Philosophy, he has published oral histories, peer-reviewed articles, journalistic and encyclopedic pieces, and Waitangi Tribunal research commissions.
Matthew's desire to communicate, explore and test complex ideas in a way that engages the reader, no matter what their age, has naturally brought him to the best and most challenging genre of all: children's fiction. Abigail and the Birth of the Sun (illustrated by Sarah Wilkins), his first published picture book, won the Best Picture Book Award at the New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults 2020.

Born in Australia, he now lives in Porirua, New Zealand with his wife and daughter Abigail, who, like her namesake, also likes to ask big questions.

Sarah Wilkins

Sarah Wilkins was born in Lower Hutt. The middle child of seven, she dreamt of becoming a solo explorer. Dreaming and drawing, which she loved, go together, so she became an illustrator instead. Her award-winning images can be found on buildings, buses, bags and many other curious places around the world, but they feel most at home on the pages of beautiful books.

She is curious about visually communicating science for young and old, and the first book in her series with author Matthew Cunningham, Abigail and the Birth of the Sun, won the Best Picture Book Award in the New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults 2020. She illustrated its sequel, Abigail and the Restless Raindrop, while completing her Master in Science in Society.

Sarah works from a light-filled studio perched high on a hill overlooking the Wellington Harbour. Find out more about her work at www.sarahwilkins.net

Praise for Abigail and the Making of the Moon

This is a truly beautiful story, both the text and the vibrant illustrations. The text offers a scientific answer but does so in a gentle personifying and descriptive style that young children will relate to. ...The sense of magic, along with lots of repeated phrases, and gorgeous illustrations really draw the reader in.

Swings and Roundabouts

The key word is wonder, in both story and image. The book begins with Abgail’s big question and it’s not a spoiler to share as it’s on the back of the book: Where did the moon come from? The unfolding origin story of the moon underlines how Matthew is a whizz at conveying information based on science and fact: simply, fluidly, informatively. Yet he manages to offer a poetic way of narrating science. Brilliant! So much to love about this book, but I especially love how big questions can help us see what we are used to seeing a little differently (in this case the moon and Earth).

Paula Green, Poetry Box

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Abigail and the Making of the Moon activity sheets!

Curious about the making of the Moon? Download these activity sheets for school or home!