Friday, January 18, 2008

Giants of Science, Marie Curie

I love biographies. In the 4th grade, I would bring home two Childhood of Famous Americans books every night and read them. Elizabeth Blackwell: Girl Doctor was one of my favorites.

Krull's Marie Curie was much, much better, and written in an amusing, engaging style that is sure to entice readers. The first sentence is "She risked her life for science." Okay! Tell me more! This is no sanitized version for children. Curie is given credit for her vast scientific acchievements, but her personality also comes through strongly. Given the odds she faced as a woman working around the turn of the last century, some depression is to be expected. The science is well-explained and understandable. The Curies both probably knew that radiation was bad for them, but they were too involved in their work to consider it a problem. This is not a long book, but quite fascinating. I will definitely look for the others in the series, including Sigmund Freud, Isaac Newton, and Leonardo da Vinci.
The only this I would add would be some actual pictures. The drawings are okay, but students are very visual, and like to see what the person really looked like.

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