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On a Beam of Light
Cover of On a Beam of Light
On a Beam of Light
A Story of Albert Einstein
Borrow

A boy rides a bicycle down a dusty road. But in his mind, he envisions himself traveling at a speed beyond imagining, on a beam of light. This brilliant mind will one day offer up some of the most revolutionary ideas ever conceived. From a boy endlessly fascinated by the wonders around him, Albert Einstein ultimately grows into a man of genius recognized the world over for profoundly illuminating our understanding of the universe. Jennifer Berne and Vladimir Radunsky invite the reader to travel along with Einstein on a journey full of curiosity, laughter, and scientific discovery. Parents and children alike will appreciate this moving story of the powerful difference imagination can make in any life.

A boy rides a bicycle down a dusty road. But in his mind, he envisions himself traveling at a speed beyond imagining, on a beam of light. This brilliant mind will one day offer up some of the most revolutionary ideas ever conceived. From a boy endlessly fascinated by the wonders around him, Albert Einstein ultimately grows into a man of genius recognized the world over for profoundly illuminating our understanding of the universe. Jennifer Berne and Vladimir Radunsky invite the reader to travel along with Einstein on a journey full of curiosity, laughter, and scientific discovery. Parents and children alike will appreciate this moving story of the powerful difference imagination can make in any life.

Available formats-
  • OverDrive Read
Languages:-
Copies-
  • Available:
    1
  • Library copies:
    1
Levels-
  • ATOS:
    4.5
  • Lexile:
    680
  • Interest Level:
    LG
  • Text Difficulty:
    3

Recommended for you

 
Awards-
About the Author-
  • Jennifer Berne is the author of the acclaimed Manfish, about Jacques Cousteau, and spends her time writing children's books about the subjects she loves most—our amazing universe and the people who are passionate about it. She lives in Copake, New York.

Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from June 17, 2013
    Berne (Manfish) and Radunsky (Hip Hop Dog) create an inspired tribute to Einstein, a man who "asked questions never asked before. Found answers never found before. And dreamed up ideas never dreamt before." The book moves briskly through Einstein's quiet, inquisitive childhood (a magnetic compass helped trigger his interest in the "mysteries in the world--hidden and silent, unknown and unseen") to his accomplishments as an adult. Radunsky's loose, hulking ink caricatures capture the gleam in Einstein's eye at every age. When Berne explains how Einstein helped prove the existence of atoms, Radunsky uses dots to underscore the idea in the accompanying image ("Even this book is made of atoms!" the scientist gleefully explains, breaking the fourth wall). Einstein's lifelong curiosity sings through every page, and Berne emphasizes that readers are heir to that same spirit of discovery. In the closing scene, Radunsky pictures a boy, girl--and dog!--wearing rather Einsteinian plaid suits, staring at a field of question marks with a familiar gleam in their eyes. Ages 6-9. Author's agent: Caryn Wiseman, Andrea Brown Literary Agency. Illustrator's agent: Brenda Bowen, Sanford J. Greenburger Associates.

  • Kirkus

    Starred review from April 1, 2013
    A boy who asked too many questions becomes iconic physicist Albert Einstein, whose questions changed the world. The author of Manfish (illustrated by Eric Puybaret, 2008) presents another dreamer, a man who "asked questions never asked before. / Found answers never found before. / And dreamed up ideas never dreamt before." Story and perfectly matched illustrations begin with the small boy who talked late, watched and thought, and imagined traveling through space on a light beam. Readers see the curious child growing into the man who constantly read and learned and wondered. With gouache, pen and ink, Radunsky's humorous, childlike drawings convey Einstein's personality as well as the important ideas in the text (which are set out in red letters). The narrative text includes several of Einstein's big ideas about time and space; one illustration and the back endpapers include the famous formula. The mottled, textured paper of each page reinforces the concept that everything is made of atoms. A nice touch at the end shows children who might also wonder, think and imagine dressed in the professor's plaid suit. An author's note adds a little more about the person and the scientist. For today's curious children, this intriguing and accessible blend of words and pictures will provide a splendid introduction to a man who never stopped questioning. (Picture book/biography. 6-9)

    COPYRIGHT(2013) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    Starred review from April 1, 2013

    Gr 2-6-The name Einstein is synonymous with genius, but what does that mean to a child? Einstein himself would only admit to being "very, very curious." Berne's picture book offers readers few biographical details, focusing instead on the physicist's intellect through the concepts that puzzled and excited him. He was late to start speaking and not particularly verbal-until he received a compass. As the author explains, "Suddenly he knew there were mysteries in the world-hidden and silent, unknown and unseen." And suddenly, too, he was bursting with questions-questions about magnetism, light, sound, gravity, and later, atoms, motion, and time. This was a person who spent his life "imagining, wondering, figuring and thinking." Radunsky's delightful pen-and-ink illustrations on cornmeal-yellow pages flecked with fibers and earth-tone highlights depict events from the man's life, his thoughts, and a few of his quirks. Einstein's old-world European childhood is reflected in the formal dress of the adults that loom over him. In an image that expresses his love of numbers, computations swirl around him. Selected lines in a large, red font add emphasis, and comments in the few dialogue bubbles are handwritten in a scratchy, black line. An endnote adds information on the physicist's thought experiments, his sense of humor, E=mc, and the atomic bomb. When considering an author's approach, Lynne Barasch's picture book Ask Albert Einstein (Farrar, 2005) and Maree Ferguson Delano's photobiography, Genius (National Geographic, 2005) are noteworthy comparisons to this richly imagined, beautifully designed, impressionistic biography.-Daryl Grabarek, School Library Journal

    Copyright 2013 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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    Chronicle Books LLC
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A Story of Albert Einstein
Jennifer Berne
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