Solar System Forecast
Freezing temperatures, scorching heat, and a storm bigger than planet Earth is just some of the wild weather you will encounter on your trip through our solar system! Get your fun facts along with your forecast for each major planet, as well as the weather on dwarf planet Pluto, and Saturn's moon Titan. Any child with an interest in space is sure to love Solar System Forecast, and parents will love the educational “For Creative Minds” section in the back of the book. Get ready for some out of this world fun with Solar System Forecast!

Written by Kelly Kizer Whitt
Illustrated by Laurie Allen Klein

32 pg, 10 X 8.5, Ages 4-9, Grades PK-4
Lexile: AD 890L, AR: 4.4, RC: 4.7, F&P: P
Hardcover 9781607185239 $17.95  
Spanish Hardcover 9781607186786 $17.95  
Paperback 9781607185321 $9.95  
Spanish Paperback 9781628554250 $9.95  
EBook 9781607185604 $6.95  
Spanish EBook 9781628551501 $6.95  
Keywords:   weather, astronomy, solar system, planets, weather, earth science, sun: heat & light, charts: atmosphere & temperatures
Animals in the book:   -
Vetters:   Thanks to Alice Sarkisian Wessen, Manager, Solar System/Outer Planets & Technology Education and Public Outreach at JPL; Dr. Sten Odenwald, Astrophysicist at Goddard Spaceflight Center and creator of SpaceMath at NASA; and Dr. Stephen Edberg, Astronomer at JPL for checking the accuracy of the information in this book.

A friendly, green-skinned TV weatheralien (he calls himself a "weatherman" in the text) begins with the Sun (“active today, with dark sunspots scattered across the surface…”) and moves on to each planet in turn. There are additional reports for the moon Titan (“a 100% chance of very chilly methane-rain drizzle today!”) and the dwarf planet Pluto. Klein provides painted scenes featuring space-suited commuters, melted or frozen science gear and views of prominent storms, from a hurricane on Earth to Jupiter’s Great Red Spot. Readers in search of specific highs, lows and other meteorological data will be well served by the charts, tables, diagrams, quizzes and other enrichment material both at the end and online on the publisher’s site. (June 2012) Kirkus Reviews

Gr 3-4–Describing planetary conditions using a familiar weather-report format, this narrative romps its way through the solar system. Starting with the Sun–“active today, with dark sunspots scattered across the surface like polka dots”–the reports cover conditions on each planet and their effect on science-fiction travelers and commuters. Earth is described as “the Goldilocks planet: not too hot, not too cold, its nitrogen and oxygen atmosphere-based climate is just right!” The illustrations amplify the humorous text–one year on Uranus lasts 84 Earth years, and its seasons change about every 21 of our years. The calendar on the bulletin board shows the years 2007 through 2027 crossed off for Spring Break. A Morton Salt-like girl with umbrella and dog illustrates the 100 percent chance of methane-rain on Saturn’s largest moon, Titan. Every page is fun to read, and every illustration invites readers in for a close examination, especially the grinning green weather guy. The “For Creative Minds” section summarizes and compares scientific data about each planet in a more down-to-earth, serious tone. Fun and informative.–Frances E. Millhouser, formerly at Chantilly Regional Library, Fairfax County, VA (December 2012)
School Library Journal

"A story book about planetary meteorology? Yes! And a really fun one, too. Kelly Kizer Whitt's text is in the voice of a weather reporter, giving the day's forecast for airy bodies across the solar system, warning of dust devils on Mars and methane drizzle on Titan. The pencil drawings of Laurie Allen Klein are also fun, featuring rover weather reporters on Mars and snowman-building robots on Pluto. Back pages contain denser facts and a couple of questions to make kids think." (October 2012)
The Planetary Society

Author/Illustrator Info:

Kelly Kizer Whitt (Solar System Forecast) has been an admirer of the universe since childhood. From the dark skies of her hometown of Sauk City, Wisconsin, she would gaze at the stars and wonder what was beyond them. Kelly majored in English and studied Astronomy at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. After college she spent three years in Nashville with her husband, Jeremy, before moving to the Milwaukee area. In 1998 she landed her dream job at Astronomy magazine, where she worked as copy editor, photo editor, and assistant editor. Kelly wrote the terrestrial planets section of The Collins Illustrated Encyclopedia of Space, published in 2001. She writes about space for the websites and She also has a weekly stargazing blog for the Sierra Club online. Besides writing about space, Kelly published a romance novel on Kindle in 2011 titled The Gathering Storm. Kelly’s hobbies include visiting the national parks, creating crossword puzzles, and reading. Kelly lives in Sussex, Wisconsin, with Jeremy, her son Kaden, her daughter Lucy, and their cat Perseus, named for the constellation.

Laurie Allen Klein has been a freelance artist for nearly 25 years. Over the last several years, she has worked as the on-staff artist for a marine park, where she does everything from painting life-size sea animal murals to illustrating children’s activity books. In addition to The Ghost of Donley Farm, Laurie has illustrated Fur and Feathers, Where Should Turtle Be?, Little Skink’s Tail, Solar System Forecast, Meet the Planets, If a Dolphin Were a Fish and Balloon Trees for Arbordale. She was the winner of the Outstanding Pennsylvania Author/Illustrator Award from the Pennsylvania School Librarians Association in 2008 and is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. Laurie lives in Florida. See more of her artwork at


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