Gr 4-6-Each of these titles features 10 inspirational stories. Gonzales focuses on the people and their accomplishments, not the disease; she includes men and women from varied ethnic groups, social stata, and sexual orientations. With the exception of "Magic" Johnson, all of her subjects are deceased. Jeffrey profiles individuals whose innovations range from lasers and microchips to videotape recorders and the Super Soaker water gun. She looks at each inventor's most famous project, along with other noteworthy work and briefly touches on personal information. Both titles include numerous quotes, most of which are taken from newspapers and popular magazines. Each chapter contains a couple of clear black-and-white photographs. Both books are current and interesting enough for recreational reading as well as for brief reports and preliminary research.-Linda Gray, Tyler Public Library, TX
Writing in an easy-to-read style, Jeffrey introduces 10 inventors--among them, William Lear, inventor of the Learjet, and Philo Farnsworth, the father of television--and explains the sometimes contentious and competitive means by which patents are obtained. Science teachers will appreciate the insights into the scientific process followed by the inventors, which often involved years of failure and repeated trials. The clear text and the interesting inventions described combine to make this an appealing choice for the age group, especially for students needing biographies of scientists or inventors or researching the process of invention.