Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Nicolaus Copernicus: the Earth Is a Planet Hardcover – November 1, 2003
Customers who bought this item also bought
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
From School Library Journal
Grade 3-6–This attractive picture-book biography includes many interesting facts about this fascinating 16th-century scientist. The author sketches Copernicus's childhood, his education in Poland, and his work as a clergyman and physician. However, the focus of the book is on the scholar's passion for astronomy and his rediscovery–after studying the works of the ancient Greeks–of the idea that the Earth is not the center of the universe but a planet orbiting the Sun. The writing of his masterpiece, Concerning the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres, is also described. (However, the author's statement that this work "was one of the most important books ever written" is perhaps a little generous.) The text is beautifully supported by dramatic oil-on-gesso artwork. Some of the paintings depict the astronomer's life, but others illustrate the scientific concepts mentioned in the narrative. Von Buhler's style suggests the muted colors and two-dimensional quality of late-medieval illustration. Fradin's depiction of his subject is idealized but he mostly resists the temptation to fictionalize. This is a useful and accessible introduction to Copernicus's life and works, but the facts and details are too scant for reports. For that purpose, Catherine M. Andronik's Copernicus: Founder of Modern Astronomy (Enslow, 2002) offers more information.–Donna Cardon, Provo City Library, UT
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Gr. 3-6. This handsome, if brief, biography of Copernicus introduces the man and his work on the heliocentric theory, for which he is best remembered. Fradin does a good job of explaining how Copernicus came to accept the notion that the planets revolve around the Sun and why it was such a revolutionary and dangerous idea to hold. Though this fully illustrated book might appear to be for younger children, middle-grade readers will be better equipped to make sense of the astronomy and the historical context. The oil paintings are handsome and also effective in creating a sense of Copernicus' life in Poland in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. On some pages, however, the art seems to overwhelm the text, particularly when the paint-textured backgrounds make reading a bit difficult. On the best double-page spreads, though, the words stand out clearly, the large pictures on the facing pages illuminate the story and scientific concepts, and smaller, decorative pictures unify the text and art. Carolyn Phelan
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support?
Top Customer Reviews
Fradin seems to have taken great care with the facts of the story. Unlike some science and biography related boks intended for children, Nicolaus Copernicus: The Earth is a Planet is *accurate* and does not lose factual credibility in its effort to make understandable how and why Copernicus arrived at his famous conclusions. Nor does the story shy away from the consequences that arose for scientists of the time who dared to contradict the Church, but rather addresses them in a non-scary, kid-appropriate way.
All in all, a wonderful effort and one I'm glad my family has experienced.
The paintings, too, are marvellous, but in a few cases, the text (in a somewhat skinny, faint font) seems to vanish behind the illustrator's brightly textured painted backdrops. The actual illustrations are wonderful, but I found myself squinting at several pages and couldn't help feeling as though nobody had actually tried to READ the book (after it was all put together) before bringing it to market.
Still HIGHLY recommended, especially since there is so little good science biography for this age range. But I've docked a star off what would normally be a 5-star book because I found it so very difficult to read in places.
The illustrations are beautiful and add a huge amount to the text. The text itself is well-chosen, concise, thorough but not "too much" for even my Kindergartener to listen to. At the same time, my 6th grader came away with a decent amount of framework on this man's life.
I later read the Wiki article on his life and found that (somewhat predictably) the story of is life is bit more "convoluted" and complicated than this book presents, but I still think it did a good job of presenting the facts of his life in a way that would neither overly gloss over the truths, nor present it all as messy and/or confusing.
My one complaint was the lack of Catholic terminology used in the text, which left me thinking that he had been a priest (but that this was then "translated" into American Protestantism with the use of words like "services" instead of "Mass," etc.). In fact, he only received some of the lower "ranks" of Holy Orders, but not the priesthood, although the Wiki article indicates that he may have been ordained such later in life. Regardless, the lower orders would have labeled him a cleric, but not a priest. Confusing, to be sure, to explain to modern American children - even Catholic ones! A minor complaint....