Harper Collins, 2017, 240 pp., Hardcover. $17.99. www.harpercollins.com
In this inspiring memoir, young readers will get to learn about Leland Melvin’s remarkable life story, from being drafted by the Detroit Lions; to bravely orbiting our planet in the International Space Station; to writing songs with will.i.am, working with Serena Williams, and starring in top-rated television shows like The Dog Whisperer, Top Chef, and Child Genius. When the former Detroit Lion’s football career was cut short by an injury, Leland didn’t waste time mourning his broken dream. Instead, he found a new one — something that was completely out of this world. He joined NASA, braved an injury that nearly left him permanently deaf, and still managed to muster the courage and resolve to travel to space on the shuttle Atlantis to help build the International Space Station. Leland’s problem-solving methods and can-do attitude turned his impossible-seeming dream into reality. His story introduces readers to the fascinating creative and scientific challenges he had to deal with in space and will encourage the next generation of can-do scientists to dare to follow their dreams. With do-it-yourself experiments in the back of the book and 16 pages of striking full-color photographs, this is the perfect book for young readers looking to be inspired. For ages 8–12.