Jake Burton Carpenter did not invent the snowboard. No one knows who did, but in 1968, Carpenter tried out the latest winter craze—a Snurfer he had bought at a toy store. The Snurfer, originally two skis bound together, had been around for years, but there were drawbacks and Carpenter thought with a couple of tweaks, the board could be even better. Over the years, Carpenter worked to modify and improve the board and to create a market for his product. Ultimately Carpenter's years of hard work and determination paid off. Today snowboarding is a popular winter sport and one that is allowed at almost all ski resorts. In 1998, snowboarding became an official Olympic sport at the winter games in Japan. From the "Inventions and Discovery" series, the graphic novel format makes for a fast and entertaining read and is likely to attract reluctant readers. Two pages of additional facts, a glossary, and a list of websites and books to learn more are included Reviewer: Anita Barnes Lowen
Michael O'Hearn published his first book in 2007, a graphic novel following the story of Henry Ford as he built the Model T automobile. He has since published many other books and continues to write both nonfiction and fiction. Michael lives in Connecticut with his wife, Karen, his daughter, Kendal, and her stuffed kitty, Meowy. When he's not busy writing, he likes to write and record songs, work on cars, trim bonsai trees, and read.