Eisner Award Winner: Best Publication for Teens | Eisner Award Nominee: Best Reality-Based Work
Laika was the abandoned puppy destined to become Earth's first space traveler. This graphic novel follows her journey.
Nick Abadzis masterfully blends fiction and fact in the intertwined stories of three compelling lives. Along with Laika, there is Korolev, once a political prisoner, now a driven engineer at the top of the Soviet Union's space program, and Yelena, the lab technician responsible for Laika's health and life. This intense triangle is rendered with the pitch-perfect emotionality of classics like Because of Winn Dixie, Shiloh, and Old Yeller.
Abadzis gives life to a pivotal moment in modern history, casting light on the hidden moments of deep humanity behind history.
Eisner Award Winner, YALSA Great Graphic Novels for Teens, YALSA Great Graphic Novel for Teens, Kirkus Reviews Best Books of the Year, Publishers Weekly Best Books of the Year, NYPL Books for the Teen Age
Praise for Laika
“* A luminous masterpiece filled with pathos and poignancy.” —Kirkus Reviews, starred review
“Abadzis doesn't just show Laika's plight. He makes you feel it in the core of your being. . . . Consider Nick Abadzis a name to watch from here on in.” —School Library Journal
“* Abadzis's tear-inducing and solidly researched graphic novel treatment of Laika's surpassingly tragic story is a standout, not just for its sympathetic point of view but for its refusal to Disnify or anthropomorphize the undeniably cute dog at its heart. . . . Although the tightly packed and vividly inked panels of Abadzis's art tell an impressively complex tale . . . where the dog becomes a pawn in larger political and bureaucratic scheming, Laika's palpable spirit is what readers will remember.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review
“Space enthusiasts will . . . appreciate how much of the drama unfolds not only in dialogue bubbles but in the meticulous visual detail within wordless frames that captures the complex emotional responses of human participants pressured to sacrifice a dog they've come to treasure.” —BCCB
“Highly recommended for public and school libraries.” —Library Journal