by Sarah Aronson; illus. by Robert Neubecker
48 pages; ages 3 - 8
Beach Lane Books, 2019
themes: invention, imagination, biography
Question: How do you become a successful, award-winning artist and famous inventor without ever inventing anything at all?
If your name is Reuben Garrett Lucius Goldberg, you do it in very circuitous manner. First, you get a degree in engineering and work for a city department of water and sewers. Then you quit and get a job cleaning the newspaper office. And in your free time you draw until the editor finally gives you a job. Then an earthquake crumbles the city around you, so you move across the country and do it again. And somewhere along the way you start inventing “screwball contraptions” – complex machines that use chain reactions to perform a simple task.
I like Robert Neubecker’s art. This spread in particular – a maze of pipes through which the text of the story runs. And I love that the end pages contain drawings of Rube Goldberg’s machines. I also like the back matter – more information about Rube and a short list of selected sources.
Beyond the book:
You can learn more about Rube Goldberg here
You may have seen a Rube Goldberg machine featured in a TV ad, like this one.
Try your hand at designing and building your own Rube Goldberg machine. Here are some ideas to get started:
- A contraption that helps you get across water.
- A way to do one of those pesky household chores.
- Invent a way to get up or get down.
- A squirrel-proof bird feeder.
You can find some helpful hints on making Rube Goldberg machines here.
Next Wednesday author Sarah Aronson will be chatting with me over at the GROG Blog. Come on over and join us!
Today we're joining Perfect Picture Book Friday, an event where bloggers share great picture books at Susanna Leonard Hill's website . Review copy provided by the author.