Wood, Wire, Wings: Emma Lilian Todd Invents an Airplane (Hardcover) (Signed Copy)
• NSTA Best STEM Book list 2021
This riveting nonfiction picture book biography explores both the failures and successes of self-taught engineer Emma Lilian Todd as she tackles one of the greatest challenges of the early 1900s: designing an airplane.
Emma Lilian Todd's mind was always soaring--she loved to solve problems. Lilian tinkered and fiddled with all sorts of objects, turning dreams into useful inventions. As a child, she took apart and reassembled clocks to figure out how they worked. As an adult, typing up patents at the U.S. Patent Office, Lilian built the inventions in her mind, including many designs for flying machines. However, they all seemed too impractical. Lilian knew she could design one that worked. She took inspiration from both nature and her many failures, driving herself to perfect the design that would eventually successfully fly. Illustrator Tracy Subisak's art brings to life author Kirsten W. Larson's story of this little-known but important engineer.
This book is SO amazing! A beautifully written scientific and personal memoir that is informative, touching, heart-breaking, and inspiring. Jahren’s descriptions of her life and scientific research into the intricacies of the plant world are as poetic and poignant as it gets. The story weaves through her early upbringing in Minnesota, her education, starting her lab with her lovable and eccentric lab partner Bill. It then follows her finding love, motherhood, and her ground-breaking geobiology research. Reading this is like taking a walk through the forest with a friend. Every word is filled with authenticity and a fervent passion for science and this book makes me proud to be studying to become a scientist. It’s a must read for those interested in the natural world or any human who has ever had feelings. - Linnea