Meet Archie Space Dog!
Archie is a little terrier with short legs, long body, scruffy coat and a funny face – a small dog with a giant dream of going to the moon.
This fully illustrated children’s book, for young readers, was first published in paperback on May 4th, 2019 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the moon landings of July 1969.
The story was inspired by the author Jo Earlam’s own rescue dog Archie and was written in tribute to the many dogs sent into orbit as part of the space race.
To mark a year since publication and to provide online resources for children during the Coronavirus pandemic the story is now on Amazon Kindle click here. It can be downloaded with full text and pictures for £1.99.
You can see author Jo Earlam reading the story with the real Archie on YouTube and find links to other online support material on this website.
Jo, the author of Tuamor the Turtle www.tuamortheturtle.com, once again teamed up with Plymouth-based artist and graphic designer Mark Hannon to create a fully illustrated engaging read for young children, that also has an element of learning.
The 800-word story sees Archie overcome being made fun of for his short legs, long body, scruffy coat and funny face, by dreaming of doing something out of this world.
He finds himself transported to the moon – one small paw, but one giant leap.
Like a lot of owners, Jo has pet names for all her dogs, including a rather teasing one for Archie, which forms part of the story-line.
“I had the idea for Archie’s story in my head for many years,” said Jo. “He walks slowly and to encourage him to keep up, I call out ‘Earth to Archie, come in please’. I also call him a rather unflattering name. That’s where the idea of him believing himself Archie Space Dog began.
“With the anniversary of the moon landings, and the part played by rescue dogs in helping mankind achieve that dream, I decided to finally write the story.”
A volunteer at Newton Poppleford Primary School, Jo got helpful feedback from children there and asked Mark Hannon to do the illustrations.
Mark said: “It was great to get the opportunity to work together with Jo on another book. We seem to share appreciation of a child’s world, and a common gentle sense of humour.
“I loved drawing a character out from Jo’s charming, lyrical words, and creating illustrations for a book that flows dreamily through space and back again. It is a little book with a big heart. Hopefully, we’ve done Archie proud.”
Jo said: “Mark’s illustrations are fantastic. They superbly match the words, enabling young readers to connect the text and the pictures. It was a joy to see the Archie’s story come to life.
“It’s a further special moment to be launching this website on May 4th, Star Wars Day, a fitting date to launch our little canine cosmonaut hero out into the wider world of digital space.”
The book and website have further research suggestions, links and content. See the resource page.
You can buy a paperback copy for £8.99 including P&P, or £16.50 for two copies – available through this link:
For we all like to dream, even tiny terriers with a funny face,
Can do something amazing to find a happy space.
Story copyright © Jo Earlam, Illustrations copyright © Mark Hannon
Website copyright © Jo Earlam