Children's Literature - Gisela JerniganThis valuable addition to the "Science Superstars" series presents the life of Mary Leakey, one of the most important archaeologists of the century. Using a simple, informal text, the author covers Leakey's long productive life, from her unconventional childhood in England and traveling around Europe, to her romance and professional collaboration with Louis Leakey and her many digs and discoveries at Olduvai Gorge and other sites in East Africa. The reader comes to understand and appreciate her dedication to her goal of uncovering evidence of Early Man and his ancestors, Many black and white drawings, a combination index-glossary, bibliography and interesting note on how she wrote the book are included.
School Library Journal - School Library JournalGr 4-6This skillfully done biography portrays the woman scientist in a lively way. But then, Leakey led an interesting life, and wasn't one to let anyone, including her mother, stop her pursuit of archaeology. Heiligman is careful to include details that will appeal to children, such as descriptions of Leakey's pets, her distaste for school, and her excitement at making new discoveries. The author is also frank in explaining how Leakey's husband often claimed the media spotlight that she more rightly deserved. Throughout the book, the author refers to ``artifacts'' that reveal aspects of the subject's lifelecture notes; drawings of a stone axe; and a matchbook from a dinner in 1933, her first meeting with Louis Leakey. Lisa Lambert's The Leakeys (Rourke, 1993) and Delta Willis's The Leakey Family (Facts on File, 1992) cover some similar territory, but Heiligman's title focuses on Mary Leakey, emphasizing her struggles and accomplishments as a woman and her contributions to the science that she loved. Charcoal drawings illustrate the text.Cathryn A. Camper, Minneapolis Public Library
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