Kid’s Book Review: Isabel and the Invisible World

Kid’s Book Review: Isabel and the Invisible World

About the Book and Author and Illustrator

Renowned physicist Alan Lightman, author of Ada and the Galaxies, turns his focus to light waves in a second picture book story for children.

There’s only one gift Isabel wants for her sixth birthday: a way to see invisible things. She can hardly think of anything else until the day of her party arrives!

Inside the box is a glass prism  and a dazzling world of previously invisible colour emerges, lighting up the room around her.

Alan Lightman was born in Memphis, Tennessee, and educated at Princeton and at the California Institute of Technology, where he recived a Ph.D. in theoretical physics. An active research scientist in astronomy and physics for two decades, he has also taught both subjects for the faculties of Harvard and MIT. His novels include Einstein’s Dreams, which was an international bestseller and The Diagnosis, which was a finalist for the National Book Award.

Ramona Kaulitzki is a book illustrator based in Potsdam, Germany. She works primarily digitally, but likes to include analogue media into her work, her main focus are picture books and book covers.

Book Review

the story and it prompted a lot of thinking and discussion

Megan said: I liked this book. I liked the main character Isabel as I have a friend called Isabel in my year at school. I can’t see invisible things. I don’t know why Isabel wanted to see invisible things.

I know what a prism shape is from school, but I didn’t see colours in it. They weren’t invisible as you could see them. I couldn’t see the rabbit as that was invisible! But I could see the dogs as they were not invisible – they both have names of girls in my class so I liked that.

Mum says: I think Megan enjoyed this book, but she was a bit confused. I’m not sure even I understood the science bit at the back, but that’s just an addition to the story.

There was some good words in the story to learn – Megan got mixed up with invisible and Isabel – and couldn’t read Genevieve (which I thought was a difficult choice of name). She didn’t understand why Isabel didn’t want a bike or a castle for her birthday, but wanted something invisible…not sure most children at 6 years old would. I asked Megan if she would like something invisible – but she said ‘what like a window’ I wouldn’t like that! It’s a bit of a hard concept to grasp but hope this feedback is helpful, we did enjoy the story and it prompted a lot of thinking and discussion.

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Alternatively, we suggest that you visit your local library and request to borrow a copy from a friendly librarian.

Whichever you choose we hope you enjoy being part of your unique reading community – happy reading everyone!


Reviewer Profile

  • Name: Megan
  • Age: 6 years
  • Likes: Playing in the park and eating cake
  • Dislikes: Big dogs and having my nose wiped
  • Favourite Book: The Folk of the Faraway Tree by Enid Blyton
  • Favourite Film: Zombies
  • Favourite Song: Shotgun by George Ezra