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Jennifer R Sommer

Her Eyes Were on the Stars: Nancy Grace Roman, "Mother of Hubble" Space Telescope

Nancy Grace Roman’s journey to becoming ‘Mother of Hubble’.

As a young girl, Nancy Grace was fascinated by the stars in the night sky and started her own astronomy club to search for constellations. As she moved from place to place for her dad’s job, the stars became her nearest and dearest friends. By junior high, Nancy knew she wanted to become an astronomer, but astronomy was not a typical career for a young woman in the 1930’s and 1940’s. Most colleges at the time did not accept girls, but Nancy found one that did and was accepted onto a science course. She also worked as an assistant at an observatory and earned a degree in astronomy in 1946, and later a PhD. As a scientific researcher, Nancy began to study the stars in the Milky Way and made some new discoveries. In 1959, she was asked to set up the space astronomy program at a new space agency, NASA. Nancy’s significant scientific achievements, her position as Chief of Astronomy for NASA, and her role in the space telescope project, led to her nickname the ‘Mother of the Hubble’.

This is a remarkable book for middle grade readers, about a remarkable scientist, Nancy Grace Roman. During a time when few women went to college, and fewer studied astronomy, Nancy went on to become one of the leading scientists of her generation. I had heard of Nancy, but I knew little about her life. This book has inspired me to go and study more about this incredible woman and her achievements.

Well-researched by Jennifer R Sommer, and based on many conversations with Nancy herself, this is an insightful and accessible book for readers of all ages. The book will appeal to readers interested in science, and particularly astronomy.

The starry illustrations by Gayle Cobb are simply stunning.

This is a fascinating read and highly recommended. The book will inspire children and adults alike to look up.

Star rating: 5 Stars

Summary: A remarkable book about a remarkable scientist, Nancy Grace Roman.

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