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 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. Laika's story will speak straight to your heart.
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
Nick Abadzis is a British comics creator whose work has been published across the globe, from the U.S. to Japan. He based his book on the true story of the Sputnik 2: there was really a dog named Laika, and she touched the stars before she died. In writing his graphic novel, Nick Abadzis did thorough scientific and historical research, including traveling to Russia, visiting special Sputnik 2 archives, and interviewing experts in the field. He lives in London with his wife and daughter.