> Skip to content
  • Published: 1 September 2020
  • ISBN: 9780143773443
  • Imprint: Picture Puffin
  • Format: Hardback
  • Pages: 32
  • RRP: $25.00

I am the Universe



A gorgeous illustrated story about our place in the Universe with a billion star rating.

From glittering galaxies to busy city streets, this stunning picture book takes you on a tour around the Universe.I am the Universe,an infinite spaceof glittering galaxies.It's a starlit journey through space that will lead you to a wonderful planet brimming with all kinds of life - including yours.

This stunning story demonstrating the scale of the Universe and our place in it was created specially for children aged three years and up by the award-winning author-illustrator Vasanti Unka, who lives in Auckland, New Zealand, the Earth, the Solar System, the Galaxy, the Milky Way, the Universe.

  • Published: 1 September 2020
  • ISBN: 9780143773443
  • Imprint: Picture Puffin
  • Format: Hardback
  • Pages: 32
  • RRP: $25.00

About the author

Vasanti Unka

Vasanti Unka is an award-winning writer, designer and illustrator noted for the originality of her storytelling, her riotously colourful and inventive illustrations and the gorgeous design and production of her picture books.

Vasanti is the illustrator of Hill & Hole by Kyle Mewburn, which was shortlisted for the Best Picture Book award at the 2011 New Zealand Post Book Awards for Children and Young Adults. Hill & Hole won the LIANZA Russell Clark Award the same year and was also the first children's book to win the Gerard Reid Award for Best Book at the PANZ Book Design Awards.

The Boring Book (Puffin 2013), which Vasanti wrote, illustrated and designed, was named the 2014 New Zealand Post Margaret Mahy Book of the Year and also took out the Best Picture Book Award category. The judges described it as 'a remarkable book that exceeds any expectations of its genre. It exhibits the highest quality of design and its presentation is thoroughly original. The story takes delightful unexpected turns that charm afresh with each reading. Small children and older readers alike will be delighted by its subversive touches and entertained by its warmth and fun.' It also won international acclaim with its inclusion in the 2014 White Ravens Catalogue and in 2016 was named an IBBY Honour Book for the excellence of its illustrations.

Stripes! No, Spots!, published by Puffin in 2015 and described by poet Paula Green as 'scrumptious in every way', was lauded as a 2016 Storylines Notable Picture Book and was simultaneously published in the UK and US.

Who Stole the Rainbow?, a humorous mystery thriller for children about why rainbows appear and disappear, was published in 2018. It was a finalist for the Best Picture Book category of the New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults 2019.

Vasanti lives in Auckland, New Zealand, where she juggles creative work and numerous book projects.

Also by Vasanti Unka

See all

Praise for I am the Universe

It’s celebration time because a glorious new Vasanti Unka book has arrived in the world. It is scintillating. It gleams and it glimmers.

Paula Green, Poetry Box

I am the Universe embodies this desire to know where we are in the grand scheme of it all....[It] conveys a sense of wonder, a sense of the enormity of the infinite and the drama of the cosmos, and the thrilling diversity and richness of nature. But it also provides a sense of the collegiality of community, and the warm embrace of our family. It is at once reassuring and also mind expanding, with plenty of triggers to spark conversations about big scientific and philosophical concepts. And it is all done with simple yet compelling, thoughtful text, and bold, flat artwork that covers every inch of each page. The illustrations are attractive, colourful and dynamic sending the reader swirling through space, swimming through oceans and strolling through town, all enabled by a generously big format which makes you feel like you’re falling into the world of the book.

Melinda Szymanik, Kids Books NZ

Related titles