What goes up, must come down. This simple statement masks one of the most complex forces in the entire universe: gravity. Without gravity the universe would be completely chaotic. Virtually everything—from our daily lives to the motion of the stars through the heavens—depends on gravity. And it even determines the length of the week and the names of each of the seven days!

  • Publisher: The Creative Company
  • Series: Mysteries of the Universe
  • Year Published: 2012
  • Age Level: 10-14
  • Category:


This sophisticated series will appeal to report writers and serious astronomy students. Each book carefully examines the history behind attempts to unravel explanations for the subjects, going back to Anaxagoras’s work on energy in 450 B.C. all the way up to the contemporary findings of Stephen Hawking. The numerous theories put forth throughout the ages are meticulously detailed and put in context of how research was able to proceed despite political or religious pressures to suppress it. Sidebars bring in interesting tidbits, including information about how pop culture has used or misused science in fiction and film. As they bring together science, history, and philosophy, these volumes are exhaustive treatments of their subjects. (School Library Journal)

The book begins with a familiar statement, “What goes up must come down,” due to a force called gravity. A delightful discussion describes the effects of gravity. Weightlessness in space travel is also highlighted. An interesting aside explains how giraffes overcome gravity and how this knowledge played a role in the development of space suits. This is an excellent resource to introduce this mystery. Further, young readers will become aware of how scientists solve problems and how theories and laws are validated as they build on prior knowledge. (National Science Teachers Association)

The “Mysteries of the Universe” series books are uniformly written by one author, so the quality is consistently high. This collection would be an excellent addition to any middle school science classroom or library. Facts, theories, and historical information are presented alongside full-page color photographs with simple but informative annotations. Another student-friendly element of this series is the brightly-colored bold text vocabulary words and accompanying glossary. Each book concludes with a list of suggested websites, a selected bibliography, and an index making this an excellent source for middle school research assignments. (Jackie Fulton, Children’s Literature)