Inspiration from Above

March 22, 2019
FROM LEFT: STEPHEN BLUE FOR TIME FOR KIDS; SYMON CHOW

The Day the Universe Exploded My Head is a collection of poems and drawings that shed light on the mysteries of the solar system. It is a whimsical—but always factual—journey to outer space and back.

The book was written by Allan Wolf and illustrated by Anna Raff (pictured). In Raff’s illustrations, planets and other celestial bodies are distinct characters. Some are lonely. Others are angry. And a few are silly. TFK Kid Reporter Ishaan Bhattacharya spoke with Raff about the inspiration for her drawings. Raff says that as she learned about outer space, the cosmos came to life in her imagination. “The planets really seemed like creatures, like living human beings,” she says. “I loved trying to make them into personalities.”