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Children's Nonfiction Aeronautics, Astronautics & Space Science


A Field Guide for Earthlings

by (author) Terence Dickinson

illustrated by Adolf Schaller

Camden House
Initial publish date
Oct 1994
Aeronautics, Astronautics & Space Science, Astrophysics & Space Science, Zoology
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Oct 1994
    List Price
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Oct 1994
    List Price

Classroom Resources

Where to buy it

Out of print

This edition is not currently available in bookstores. Check your local library or search for used copies at Abebooks.


What will they look like? That is the question addressed in this wonderfully illustrated book for "earthlings" who want to explore beyond the cardboard aliens of television science fiction to find out what science says about our cosmic cousins from other planet--if they exist.

Author Terence Dickinson, an acclaimed astronomy writer, examines t! he picture we have absorbed from TV and movies about creatures from other planets, from the friendly visitor in E.T. to the savage creature in Alien and the gaggle of other-worldly folk from Star Trek and its clones. Dickinson then explains how the variety of environments in the universe could give rise to creature far more different from us than anything Hollywood's invented.

Through the talents of illustrator Adolf Schaller, one of the chief artists and Emmy-award winner from Carl Sagan's Cosmos television series, alien worlds come alive with plants, insects and animals never dreamed of before. Yet, Schaller's vision is based on sound assumptions about the gravity of each hypothetical planet, the type of star that it orbits and other factors that bring plausible alien environments to life. The book winds up with a look at "life as we don't know it," featuring creatures and entities that might have evolved from something other that carbon-based biology, the foundation of ! Earth life.

A unique blend of science and imagination, Extraterrestrials will compel anyone who has ever thought about what-and who-might be out there.


About the authors

Terence Dickinson, one of Canada's best-loved amateur-astronomy writers, gained renown for unraveling the mysteries of the cosmos. His down-to-earth style made him the award-winning best-selling author of 14 astronomy books, including NightWatch, The Backyard Astronomer's Guide, The Universe and Beyond and Hubble's Universe. The cofounder and former editor of SkyNews, Canada's national astronomy magazine, Dickinson was a recipient of the Order of Canada and two honorary doctorates. He died of complications from Parkinson's on February 1, 2023.

Terence Dickinson's profile page

Adolf Schaller's profile page

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