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For Laika - The Dog Who Learned the Names of the Stars

For Laika

The Dog Who Learned the Names of the Stars

Text by Kai Cheng Thom
Illustrated by Kai Yun Ching
Categories: Children's & Young Adult, Children's
Hardcover : 9781551528625, 40 pages, 2021


The heart-rending story of Laika, the brave canine space traveller.

By two of the co-creators of the acclaimed children's book From the Stars in the Sky to the Fish in the Sea: the moving and beautifully told story of Laika, the dog who learned the names of the stars. Laika is an orphaned stray dog who lives in the streets of Moscow in the 1950s in the then Soviet Union. Although she is loved by her pack, Laika longs to one day learn the names of the stars, since she knows that all dogs become stars when they die - including her parents. One day, a Russian scientist named Vlad offers Laika the chance to travel to the stars by helping him with an important experiment, an event that will change the entire world.

Part fable, part dog story, part history lesson, the story of Laika's brave and loving heart will captivate young and older readers alike, offering important lessons about world peace, science, and the deep bonds between humans and every other creature with whom we share the planet.


The story provides a unique way to have discussions with children about sensitive topics like different types of family loss, and it also opens their minds up to science. There is a discussion guide at the end for teachers, parents and guardians to get even deeper into the themes of the book. The illustrations provide a rich way for children to engage. -Bee Quammie, CBC's "The Next Chapter"