"Tender and illuminating. A beautiful debut." --Rebecca Stead, Newbery Medal-winning author of When You Reach Me

A heartrending and hopeful debut novel about a nonverbal girl and her passion for space exploration, for fans of See You in the Cosmos, Mockingbird, and The Thing About Jellyfish.


Twelve-year-old Nova is eagerly awaiting the launch of the space shuttle Challenger--it's the first time a teacher is going into space, and kids across America will watch the event on live TV in their classrooms. Nova and her big sister, Bridget, share a love of astronomy and the space program. They planned to watch the launch together. But Bridget has disappeared, and Nova is in a new foster home.

While foster families and teachers dismiss Nova as severely autistic and nonverbal, Bridget understands how intelligent and special Nova is, and all that she can't express. As the liftoff draws closer, Nova's new foster family and teachers begin to see her potential, and for the first time, she is making friends without Bridget. But every day, she's counting down to the launch, and to the moment when she'll see Bridget again. Because Bridget said, "No matter what, I'll be there. I promise."
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published on May 14, 2019 by Wendy Lamb Books
ISBN-10: 0525646574
ISBN-13: 9780525646570
4 Book Reviews
  • waterdroplet
    waterdropletabout 1 year33 stars
    This is a book about a girl who doesn't talk. She prefers to think. She has been separated from her big sister. Her sister promised her that she will see the new rocket challenger launch off. On that day she is not there. Still she watches the take off, it was supposed to be happy...but when challenger blows up, she sorta stops for a minute. She then realizes what and why her sister didn't come. This book is better for people who know how to handle tragedy. Also for middle schoolers. I only do not recommend it because of how it can make you think. Yes its a good book but, it was the way it made me think.
    • lisssssy
      lisssssyover 1 year
      I loved this book, I never get emotional reading books but this one takes the cake I love the characters! when I finished the book I wanted more of the story. 10/10
      • bsc
        bscover 2 years44 stars
        This book was a real eye opener. I almost cried, and the author puts so much life i this book, I feel like I know the characters. Nova has been to many foster homes with her sister, Bridget. She has autism and not many people understand her. But she loves the moon, and space. She's awaiting the takeoff for the challenger and also waiting for Bridget to come back. I rate this book 4 stars.
        • inmemoryofcpr
          inmemoryofcprover 2 years33 stars
          this book wasn't that good. I thought it would be as good as wonder, but I'm disappointed. The main character is kinda hard to understand, and there are lots of loosed threads in the end. Wouldn't recommend.