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The Man Who Made Time Travel (Orbis Pictus Honor for Outstanding Nonfiction for Children (Awards)) Hardcover – April 2, 2003


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 13 years
  • Grade Level: 3 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 840L (What's this?)
  • Series: Orbis Pictus Honor for Outstanding Nonfiction for Children (Awards)
  • Hardcover: 48 pages
  • Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR); First Edition edition (April 2, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0374347883
  • ISBN-13: 978-0374347888
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 10.8 x 10.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #41,374 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 4-6-In 1707, after nearly 2000 sailors and four ships were lost in one stormy night off England's coast, Parliament passed the Longitude Act guaranteeing 20,000 pounds sterling ($12 million today) for a method to navigate the seas with certitude. It was known that latitude could be measured, but to determine longitude-distance east or west of a point-a method had yet to be devised. In an engaging manner, Lasky relates the mad ideas that were considered, including barking dogs, tiptoeing, and a fire on deck before examining the inventive life and mind of a genius who solved the problem. John Harrison, a village carpenter and a self-taught polymath, elegantly reasoned that the answer lay in a timepiece itself. It would take more than 35 years and five prototypes before Harrison was satisfied, although his very first model barely lost a second on its first voyage. It would take a petition to the king before the inventor's solution won any prize money, and even then, he was refused the prize. Perhaps it is the combination of the elegance of his solution and the injustice of its resolution that has made Harrison's story so popular. With Hawkes's luminous full-color paintings on every page, its clear science, and its compelling social commentary, this title is not to be missed.
Dona Ratterree, New York City Public Schools
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Gr. 3-5. Executed in an oversize format, which allows plenty of space for Hawkes' dramatic pictures, this tells the story of John Harrison, an eighteenth-century clock maker who solved the problem of tracking longitude in shipboard navigation. The book begins with a shipwreck, dramatizing the fact that the longitude puzzle was not just a matter of academic or economic importance but a life-and-death question for those who sailed the seas. After introducing some of the more absurd solutions proposed for tracking longitude, the discussion turns to young John Harrison, who was 21 when the Longitude Prize was offered by the British Parliament. Lasky shows how, over the next half-century, Harrison worked to design and perfect a timepiece that would earn the prize. Not every child will understand the technical challenge discussed; however, the text makes absorbing reading both for its sidelights on history and for the personal drama portrayed. Harrison emerges as an admirable, if idiosyncratic, individual whose story is well worth telling. Atmospherically lit and richly colored, Hawkes' large-scale paintings are often striking in their overall effects and intriguing in their details. Unexpected elements of humor in both the historical narrative and the illustrations lighten what could have been a dry, weighty treatment in other hands. Teachers looking for books for units on inventors will find this a memorable choice for reading aloud. Carolyn Phelan
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

More About the Author

Hi Readers! Thanks for coming by my author page. I've written all sorts of books - from fantasy about animals to books about science. One of my favorite animal fantasy series, Guardians of Ga'Hoole, is a major motion picture. I liked writing about Ga'Hoole so much that I decided to revisit that world in a different series, Wolves of the Beyond. I've recently added a new Guardians book: The Rise of A Legend, the story of Ezylryb, the great sage of the Ga'Hoole Tree. Another new book just came out, the first in the Horses of the Dawn series. I think of it as an equine retelling of the Spanish conquest of the New World. Visit my website, www.kathrynlasky.com for the latest news. All my best, Kathryn

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mrs. M on March 9, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I love this book not only for the superb illustrations, but also for the important message that it relays to children. Perseverance, hard work, and scientific discovery matter, even when you don't receive the public acclaim and financial rewards that you may deserve.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on August 7, 2005
Format: Hardcover
It was a good book, but I have read better books and worst books. It made me want to go to London to see the clocks that John Harrisson made.

I would recommend it for people who want to know about history but don't like reading long books.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By rac3301 on October 10, 2011
Format: Hardcover
The Man Who Made Time Travel is a wonderful informational book that is able to keep young readers interested by using a narrative writing style as opposed to the expository style. The illustrations in the book follow along with the story quite well, which helps to reinforce the information inside the story. The book teaches an overall lesson of persistence while making young readers question and hypothesize on how time and space helps humans in terms of navigation. I would have really benefited by reading this book as a child, because I have always been very interested in math/science. The book even does a great job of covering several of Newton's laws of motion. This is a great book and a must buy.

-21 yr old./Future Teacher
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