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Bright Sky, Starry City

Written by Uma Krishnaswami

Illustrated by Aimée Sicuro

  • 32 Pages
  • 9781554984053
  • from 6 to 9
  • JUVENILE FICTION / Family / General (see also headings under Social Situations)
  • JUVENILE FICTION / Lifestyles / City Life
  • JUVENILE FICTION / Nature & the Natural World (see also headings under Animals)



Publication Date May 01, 2015

Phoebe helps her dad set up telescopes on the sidewalk outside his store. It’s a special night — Saturn and Mars are going to appear together in the sky. But will Phoebe be able to see them with all the city lights?

Raindrops begin to fall, followed by lightning and thunder. Phoebe is filled with disappointment as she and her father hurry inside to wait out the storm.

But suddenly the power fails and then, amazingly, the rain and clouds disappear. Phoebe and her dad and all kinds of people spill into the street. And there, in the bright night sky, the splendor of the planets and a multitude of stars are revealed for all to see.

An illustrated afterword includes information about the solar system, planetary conjunctions and rings, moons, telescopes and light pollution. A glossary and recommended further reading are also included.


Uma Krishnaswami

Uma Krishnaswami is the author of more than twenty books for children, from picture books (The Girl of the Wish Garden, Bright Sky, Starry City and Out of the Way! Out of the Way!), through novels for young readers (The Grand Plan to Fix Everything). Her books have been published in eleven languages and have been picked for CCBC Choices, Parents’ Choice, IRA’s Notable Books for a Global Society, the Scientific American Young Readers’ Book Award, Bank Street Best Books of the Year and the Paterson Prize. Originally published in India, Book Uncle and Me won the Scholastic Asian Book Award.

Born in New Delhi, Uma teaches at Vermont College of Fine Arts in the MFA program in writing for children and young adults.

Aimée Sicuro

Aimée Sicuro is an award-winning illustrator who recently published her first picture book, Bright Sky, Starry City by Uma Krishnaswami, which has been highly acclaimed.


"Capture[s] a strong sense of a special, shared moment." Kirkus Reviews

"Krishnaswami’s elegant, understated writing focuses . . . on Phoebe’s hopes, disappointments, and curiosities, as well as her tender relationship with her father. Newcomer Sicuro’s mixed-media illustrations are similarly attentive to the story’s emotions." Publishers Weekly

"In addition to a sweet, resonating, multi-culti father-who-encourages-STEM-for-his-daughter story, you’ll also enjoy a rather extensive astronomy lesson . . . as well as a detailed reminder on the importance of going green." BookDragon

"A warm and wonderful ode to the universe for the modern urban astronomer." Brain Pickings

"This story of a young girl of color with a passion for science will fill a gap in many collections." Booklist

"Sicuro captures the wonder of “how deep the night was and how endless” through a series of circular drawings and collages . . . as Krishnaswami’s near-breathless prose recounts first one and then another of the sights now visible." Horn Book

"A gentle tale of a shared father/daughter enterprise, and Sicuro’s mixed-media illustrations, with their gauzy chalk and translucent watercolor touches, convey both the objective and emotive pleasures of stargazing." Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books