A wonderfully realized introduction to a fascinating, long-overlooked woman.

JOSEPHINE AND HER DISHWASHING MACHINE

JOSEPHINE COCHRANE'S BRIGHT INVENTION MAKES A SPLASH

Josephine Cochrane saw a need and overcame obstacles to find a solution.

She resented the time that was taken by the job of hand-washing stacks of dishes. Josephine’s mantra became “There must be a better way!” and, stirred to create a device that would end this onerous task, she studied past attempts, sketched, measured, calculated, tinkered, and designed, and began building the hand-cranked machine with the aid of George Butters, a mechanic and, later, her business partner. Her husband’s death called a halt for a long time as she slowly paid off debts. She then returned to her efforts and finally received a patent in 1886. Further difficulties ensued as Josephine attempted to start a manufacturing business, as investors would not back a woman. But when her dishwashing machine won first prize at the Chicago World’s Fair in 1893, she was on her way to great success supplying dishwashers to hotels, restaurants, schools, and hospitals, always improving with more patents. Though Cochrane’s may not be a household name, Hannigan seeks to change that, presenting the events chronologically and factually, interspersing the narration with quotes and information about other inventors of the period, women included. Green’s bright digital illustrations capture Josephine’s determination and emotions and enhance the text with diagrams, sketches, and charming homey details, including dishes and tools floating by. Cochrane was White; some background characters are diverse. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

A wonderfully realized introduction to a fascinating, long-overlooked woman. (author’s note, copy of patent, notable women inventors, photos, timeline of fascinating inventions, sources, picture credits) (Informational picture book. 8-11)

Pub Date: March 14, 2023

ISBN: 978-1-63592-621-7

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Calkins Creek/Astra Books for Young Readers

Review Posted Online: Nov. 29, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 2022

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Several unexpected connections, though Eurocentric overall and lacking in racial diversity.

HEAD TO HEAD

18 LINKED PORTRAITS OF PEOPLE WHO CHANGED THE WORLD

Renowned achievers go nose-to-nose on fold-out pages.

Mixing contemporary celebrities with historical figures, Corbineau pairs off his gallery of full-page portraits by theme, the images all reworked from photos or prints into cut-paper collages with highly saturated hues. Gandhi and Rosa Parks exemplify nonviolent protest; Mother Teresa and Angelina Jolie are (mostly) commended for their work with impoverished people; and a “common point” between Gutenberg and Mark Zuckerberg is that both revolutionized the ways we communicate. The portraits, on opposite ends of gatefolds, open to reveal short biographies flanking explanatory essays. Women and people of color are distinctly underrepresented. There are a few surprises, such as guillotined French playwright Olympe de Gouges, linked for her feminism with actress Emma Watson; extreme free-fall jumper Felix Baumgartner, paired with fellow aerialist record-seeker Amelia Earhart; and Nelson Mandela’s co–freedom fighter Jean Moulin, a leader of the French Resistance. In another departure from the usual run of inspirational panegyrics, Cornabas slips in the occasional provocative claim, noting that many countries considered Mandela’s African National Congress a terrorist organization and that Mother Teresa, believing that suffering was “a gift from God,” rarely gave her patients painkillers. Although perhaps only some of these subjects “changed the world” in any significant sense, all come off as admirable—for their ambition, strength of character, and drive.

Several unexpected connections, though Eurocentric overall and lacking in racial diversity. (map, timeline) (Collective biography. 8-11)

Pub Date: Nov. 28, 2021

ISBN: 978-0-7643-6226-2

Page Count: 84

Publisher: Schiffer

Review Posted Online: Oct. 13, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2021

Did you like this book?

Inspirational but occasionally unclear.

JUST LIKE ME

Gooding's debut profiles 40 famous people with disabilities.

The author, a mother of children with disabilities, opens the book with a note about her desire to find role models for her children. To that end, she alphabetically introduces racially diverse disabled people from around the world and throughout history. Diagnoses range from autism to limb difference. Historical figures include Japanese peace advocate Sadako Sasaki, who developed leukemia after the bombing of Hiroshima, and American abolitionist Harriet Tubman, who led fellow slaves to freedom despite epilepsy. Contemporary figures include athletes, authors, and entertainers: Polio survivor and Paralympian Malathi Krishnamurthy-Holla remains "one of the fastest female Indian athletes in a wheelchair"; Japanese nonverbal author Naoki Higashida penned popular books describing autism; English actor Daniel Radcliffe deals with dyspraxia, a coordination disorder; and Australian Madeline Stuart is the first professional model with Down syndrome. Each profile begins with an uplifting quote and concludes with a sidebar explaining the subject’s disability. Unfortunately, some sidebars emphasize colloquial over scientific terms. For instance, Stephen Hawking’s disability is named eponymously (Lou Gehrig's disease), “also known as ALS,” instead of with its scientific name, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Occasionally, vague phrasing creates confusion, such as when the author writes that a speech-generating device enabled Hawking to communicate by using a “touchpad.” (A hand clicker became his primary input method.) Various illustrators’ realistic renditions of smiling subjects complement the upbeat (albeit somewhat dry) text.

Inspirational but occasionally unclear. (glossary, quote sources) (Collective biography. 8-10)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-78741-848-6

Page Count: 96

Publisher: Bonnier/Trafalgar

Review Posted Online: Oct. 13, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2021

Did you like this book?

more