Alone by Scott Stuart
Alone by Scott Stuart
We all feel different sometimes, and Earth, slowly spinning in the darkness of space, feels so very different from all the other planets.
Can Earth find friendship in the loneliest of places?
This lovingly illustrated children's book by Scott Stuart reminds us that even when we feel completely alone, friendship is just a moment (or a meteor) away.
Earth opened her eyes
and looked all around.
She looked for a friend…
but no friend could be found.
AN INTERVIEW WITH THE AUTHOR
Q - What inspired you to write this book?
When I was young, we moved house a lot, and every time we arrived in a new place, I had to go through the process of making new friends. I vividly remember moving to Melbourne, knowing nobody, and in this large city, surrounded by millions of people, I felt lonelier than I had ever felt before. I think a lot of kids, as they enter new stages of their lives, can really relate to this feeling of loneliness, of being surrounded by people but afraid that they won’t make new friends, of feeling completely alone in the world.
As I explored that theme for a new children’s book, I thought “what could be lonelier than the darkness of space?” That led me to think about how the Earth would feel if it were to wake up, surrounded by darkness, wanting to make friends.
Would other planets be willing to open their hearts? Would the Earth be willing to take a chance and reach out to them? What if the other planets weren’t friendly? What if they didn’t like the Earth for who she was?
Q - What do kids learn in this book?
To cover the scientific bases first - I’ve been amazed at how quickly kids have learned the little facts that I brought into the story about all the planets. Like Uranus being blue and 4 times the size of Earth - when my son said that to me I was completely blown away by everything he remembered about the story.
Everything in the book is based on scientific theory - some of it is debated of course, like how the moon came to be, and the age of the sun - but everything is based on our knowledge of the universe.
The other thing, and the most important thing, that kids are learning, is that feeling alone in a new environment is something that everyone experiences. They learn that it’s ok to feel sad when they’re struggling to make friends. And they also learn that friendship is always only a moment (or a meteor) away.
Q - What’s the feedback that has been the most surprising?
I’ve been constantly surprised by, despite this being a picture book written for young children, how much this concept of feeling alone has resonated with an older audience. I know I had experienced the feeling, especially when in a new city, but so many people have reached out and told me they have felt the same.
Q - Do kids love this book?
I think that, when it comes to books about planets and space, it can be hard to really engage kids in the facts and the science. I’ve taken a completely different approach. I’ve built a really heartwarming story about the Earth and her emotions.