The Universe Ate My Homework

(Author) (Illustrator)
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Product Details

$17.99  $16.73
Carolrhoda Books (R)
Publish Date
9.2 X 11.1 X 0.6 inches | 0.95 pounds

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About the Author

David Zeltser is the author of the Lug series, Ninja Baby, Stinker, and The Universe Ate My Homework. He studied physics at Harvard and was fortunate to co-author a paper with the world renowned physicist Howard Georgi. Now David writes children's books, graphic novels, and screenplays and lives with his family and many barking sea lions in Santa Cruz, California. Follow him on Twitter (@davidzeltser) and at
Ayesha L. Rubio was born in Madrid, Spain, in February. She loved to draw, but unfortunately for her family, any surface was an empty canvas for her. Her grandfather taught her to draw on paper, instead of furniture or walls. Nowadays, she lives in London and works as an author and illustrator and occasional animator.


"Abby dislikes doing homework more than anything. So when her father tells her about black holes and 'baby universes, ' she decides to make one herself. After a thorough but kid-friendly explanation of black holes, Abby realizes that maybe if she squeezes her homework hard enough, she can create a black hole, too. She then turns the black hole into a 'baby universe, ' but decides to stay with her family, even though the new universe would have no homework. The piece overall is a nice blend of science and sweetness that will both educate and entertain. The ending page of Abby's explanation for her missing homework is a nice touch. Artwork is equally friendly, with bright and vibrant spreads that will inspire young minds to imagine and create their own inventions. VERDICT A lively and interesting STEM-focused addition."--School Library Journal

-- (7/26/2018 12:00:00 AM)

"A girl who hates homework more than anything else in this universe creates an alternative one, with a few hints from her physicist dad. Unable to escape her parents' persistent reminders to get to work (they obviously know her well), Abby sneaks into her father's study, follows his directions for creating a mini black hole ('Step 1. Choose anything you want to get rid of. Step 2. Squeeze it really, really hard'), and 'POP!' turns her homework paper into a singularity. With the addition of some energy created by jumping up and down, the singularity becomes a baby universe complete with tiny stars and gas clouds. Abby almost leaps in, but when her understandably impressed dad admits that he wouldn't know how to get her back, she decides to stay and instead joins both parents (who are now apparently willing to cut her some slack) in the yard for cuddles and stargazing. For budding astrophysicists, Zeltser tucks in simple descriptions of what black holes are and how they form, and Rubio ups the ante considerably with relevant equations from Hawking and Einstein on the study chalkboard. Topped by a wild nebula of red hair, Abby makes a moderately big bang all on her own (she and her parents are white), and chuckles will coalesce around her written explanation of what happened to her homework at the end, which is capped with her teacher's inexplicably skeptical response. Even readers who don't share Abby's aversion to homework will be sucked in."--Kirkus Reviews

-- (4/20/2018 12:00:00 AM)

"Don't try this at home, just bring it home. The Universe Ate My Homework is totally safe (and delightful) to read."--Robert Krulwich, NPR science journalist and co-host of Radiolab

-- (3/19/2018 12:00:00 AM)