by Laurie Wallmark
Illustrated by Katy Wu
Published May, 2017
Sterling Children's Books
Nonfiction Picture Book
Review copy provided by publisher
Who was Grace Hopper? A software tester, workplace jester, cherished mentor, ace inventor, avid reader, naval leader—AND rule breaker, chance taker, and troublemaker. Grace Hopper coined the term “computer bug” and taught computers to “speak English,” and throughout her life succeeded in doing what no one had ever done before. Delighting in difficult ideas and in defying expectations, the insatiably curious Hopper truly is “Amazing Grace” . . . and a role model for science- and math-minded girls and boys.
Do you know where the phrase "computer bug" came from? You will after reading this book. Every time I read a nonfiction picture book, I learn that there is so much to learn. I did not know about Grace Hopper, I am so glad that I do now. This book takes her from a curious girl, who took apart household appliances to find out how they work, to computer code queen. Grace's story teaches us that STEM talent knows no gender or age. She was an invaluable resource, writing code for the navy until she was 80 years old! She is a great role model for perseverance and growth mindset. I really loved how the author captures her spirit and insatiable curiosity. One cannot help but be inspired by her tenacity.
The author tells the story with just enough text to keep it interesting for young readers and up through middle school. Actual quotes from Grace are sprinkled throughout the book in creative ways. One of my favorites is, "If you've got a good idea, and you know it's going to work, go ahead and do it."
The back matter consists of a timeline of Grace Hopper's life, a selected bibliography, additional reading about women in STEM and a summary of Grace's many honors.
Not only is the book entertaining and informative, it is visually enticing as well. With a variety of interesting formats, backgrounds, fonts and bold colors, there is much to keep readers engaged.
Grace Hopper: Queen of Code is an essential addition to every classroom, school and public library.
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