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News & Reviews

Santiago Ramón y Cajal,

Artist, Doctor, Father of Neuroscience



mit Kids Press

(Candlwick Press)

(pub. 11.14.2023) 40 pages

Ages 5-9

Author: Christine Iverson

Illustrator: Luciano Lozano

Character: Santiago Ramón y Cajal


" Santiago Ramón y Cajal’s father, the village doctor, wants Santiago to be a doctor. He discourages his willful son’s love and aptitude for art. But drawing and painting are as necessary to Santiago as breathing, so when his father confiscates his art supplies, the boy finds a way to draw in secret. He draws on doors, gates, and walls, and to the neighbors, his drawings are a nuisance. But Santiago sees things differently. He’s an artist and always will be, even after he grows up and becomes a doctor. And art helps him discover what no one else could: branching connections within the nervous system."

Tantalizing taste:

"After graduation, he had to trade hikes in the mountains for duty in Cuba with a Spanish army. In Cuba, there were tropical forests, dangling vines, and swaying palm trees to explore. There was also malaria.

Santiago returned home too sick and weak to hike. Instead he used the last of his army pay to buy a microscope for studying anatomy. When he peered through the lens, he discovered a world rich with uncharted lands. He picked up his pencil and began to draw.

Santiago drew and studied and tutored until he became a professor of anatomy in Valencia. "

And something more: The Life and Works in the back matter explains that "in 1906, Santiago won the Nobel prize for medicine. He shared the award with Dr. Camillo Golgi, the Italian scientist who invented the staining method Santiago used for his discoveries. Golgi still did not believe Santiago's findings and spent the majority of his Nobel Prize acceptance speech disagreeing with the neuron doctrine. Santiago was not flustered. The next day, he gave the speech he had planned, ignoring Golgi's criticism, crediting Golgi for inventing the staining method, and then explaining his own findings... Scientists using modern technology have confirmed that Santiago was correct."

Excited to see the promotion for our picture book biography, DRESSING UP THE STARS - The Story of Hollywood Costume Designer Edith Head, in CD which is the Costume Designer Guild's magazine full of wonderful photos of costumes and the accompanying sketches for current movies ... just as Edith Head did during her long career!

How Tiny Broadwick Created

The Parachute Rip Cord



little bee books

(pub.10.10.2023) 40 pages

Ages 4-8

Author: Candy Dahl

Illustrator: Maithili Joshi

Character: Tiny Broadwick


" Tiny Broadwick, a teeny, uneducated mill girl, had big dreams of soaring above the earth, out of poverty, and above expectations. She became the first woman to parachute from an airplane, and her idea for the rip cord paved the way for pilots to safely escape in-flight emergencies.

This thrilling biography shows how Tiny's determination, courage, adventurousness, and joy lifted her up to stand tall as a pioneer in flight."

Tantalizing taste:

"Tiny performed heart-stopping, triple parachute jumps.

She jumped at night with fiery flares.

She risked drowning when she landed in water.

Oftentimes, the wind blew her parachute off target.

Tiny landed in strange and dangerous places:

Trains, windmills, roofs, trees.

She broke her arms, shoulders, ankles, and feet.

But Tiny refused to stop doing what she loved best -

rising up into the sky."

And something more: Candy Dahl in the Author's Note explains: "For decades, the accomplishments of a young woman in an aviation world heavily dominated by men disappeared into obscurity... Her life took a sudden turn when she met Jim and Maxine Hix, a copule who were involved in aviation ... soon Tiny was back in the aviation world where she belonged. In 1953, Tiny received the United States Government Pioneer Aviation Award on the fiftieth anniversary of the Wright brothers' first flight."

Where to find Jeanne Walker Harvey books

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