Book Review: Frank the Martian
Updated: Feb 1
This is our very first Star Ship Review and we're so excited to share it with you! Our goal is to help bring attention to some wonderful independent authors and publishers. For this weeks entry, we'll be taking a dive into Frank the Martian; Written by David A. Sloan and Illustrated by Oshadi Sandareka.
David A. Sloan is a journalist and children's book author. He lives in Washington D.C. with his wife and two children.
Oshadi Sandareka is a freelance children's book illustrator and a book designer. She enjoys writing and storytelling and has illustrated over 15 books. She has a special interest in drawing and painting, utilizing watercolor as a medium. Additionally, she has participated in several international and national watercolor painting events and exhibitions.
"What happens when a lonely Martian comes to Earth to find new friends? With his strange looks and green skin, frank has trouble finding new friends, until he runs into a group of children in the park. Find out how Frank goes from a stranger to a friend on planet Earth."
I really enjoyed reading about Frank's adventure on Earth. He came with one simple mission... To find out what people liked to do for fun!
It's an engaging premise that had me thinking, what WILL Frank find that people like to do for fun?
Of course, Frank's mission turns out to not be as easy as he initially thought. No matter what he tried, people just didn't want to engage with him. That is until he finally meets a boy named Sam who introduces him to all of his friends and together they show Frank what they like to do for fun!
I think that David has captured a really important message here about not judging others by their appearance. Learning about empathy is so important at a young age and while exploring this, David keeps the audience engaged with a very likeable protagonist that keeps us wondering what's going to happen next all the way until the heartfelt ending.
The illustrations by Oshadi are fantastic and I feel that they really help tell the full story. The unique drawing style keeps everything fun and vibrant with lots of interesting colors and while the pages are packed with fun details, they don’t feel overwhelming. Though it may take a few readthroughs to catch every cool little insert.
The Mini Interview:
To wrap things up, we've asked David to answer three quick questions for us!
What was your inspiration for the story?
I believe that every child at some point feels left out or feels different when they go to a new school or meet new friends. That feeling of being left out can be devastating for a child and I want to show them that it is important to reach out to someone when they may not look or sound like you. I wrote Frank the Martian as a way to demonstrate why empathy for others is such a necessary part of character building.
What was your favorite book growing up?
When I was really young I loved Shel Silverstein's the Giving Tree. Even as a child the book had a real impact. I was able to connect with it and understand what the author was trying to accomplish. I didn't think about its importance until years later and how it left a mark on me. And this is what I hope to achieve with Frank the Martian.
What piece of advice would you give to aspiring children’s authors?
It's actually pretty simple, just start writing. If you have an idea, put it down on paper. Find out later if it works or not. If you don't you'll never find out whether it works or not.
If you'd like to check out Frank the Martian on Instagram you can do so here:
And if you'd like to grab your own copy of the book, it can be purchased here: