Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978



Parents' Choice Awards : Books : Non-Fiction
The Boy Who Invented T.V.: The Story of Philo Farnsworth

The Boy Who Invented T.V.: The Story of Philo Farnsworth

Fall 2009 Non-Fiction
Ages: 5 - 8 yrs.
ISBN: 978-0-375-84561-1
Hardcover Price: $16.99
Review:
For better or worse, television is a fixture of modern society; but it all started with a teenager's dream on a farm in the early years of the 20th century. The Boy Who Invented TV tells the story of that young inventor, Philo Farnsworth. Farnsworth always loved music and mechanical equipment-in fact, he learned to read in part by looking at the gadgets for sale in the Sears Roebuck catalogs. After the advent of "magic box" radio, scientists scrambled to develop a way to transmit visual images too. Farnsworth, though only a young person with a hobbyist's interest in science, beat everyone to it. His epiphany came while looking at rows of dirt on the farm-their parallel lines got him thinking about parallel lines of light, and so an idea was born. After eight years of trial and error, detailed by author Kathleen Krull, Farnsworth transmitted the first television image, a picture of his wife. Krull's clear text simplifies the complex science involved, and maintains a sense of excitement, as Farnsworth gets closer to success. Greg Couch's mixed media illustrations echo the energy of the storyline and capture the inventor's enthusiasm. This is a good book for children interested in science, technology or invention.
Zarina Mullan Plath   ©2009 Parents' Choice
Zarina Mullan Plath has undergraduate degrees in both biology and English. Her interests include cookbooks/culinary history, South Asian literature (especially in regards to South Asians in America), and, of course, children's literature. Her poetry is included in the anthology Sweeping Beauty (U. of Iowa Press, 2005). Zarina lives in Central Illinois with her husband, two children, and assorted pets.


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