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Wood, Wire, Wings: Emma Lilian Todd Invents an Airplane

Wood, Wire, Wings: Emma Lilian Todd Invents an Airplane


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Available for Pre-Order. This item will be available on February 25, 2020


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.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781629799384
Publisher: Highlights
Publication date: 02/25/2020
Pages: 48
Sales rank: 428,326
Product dimensions: 9.00(w) x 11.00(h) x (d)
Age Range: 7 - 10 Years

About the Author

Kirsten W. Larson used to work with rocket scientists at NASA. Now she writes about rocket science—and just about any science—for kids. She is the author of more than twenty-five children's books, including the Robotics in Our World series. Visit

After working as an industrial designer for seven years, Tracy Subisak began her business as a freelance illustrator and designer. She specializes in visual storytelling through children's literature, storyboarding, and design work. Visit