Read Neo Leo: The Ageless Ideas of Leonardo Da Vinci by Gene Barretta Online


In 1781, Thomas Paine came up with a model for a single-span bridge; in 1887, Adolf Eugen Fick made the first pair of contact lenses; and in 1907, Paul Cornu built the first helicopter. But Leonardo da Vinci thought of all these ideas more than five hundred years ago! At once an artist, inventor, engineer, and scientist, da Vinci wrote and drew detailed descriptions of whIn 1781, Thomas Paine came up with a model for a single-span bridge; in 1887, Adolf Eugen Fick made the first pair of contact lenses; and in 1907, Paul Cornu built the first helicopter. But Leonardo da Vinci thought of all these ideas more than five hundred years ago! At once an artist, inventor, engineer, and scientist, da Vinci wrote and drew detailed descriptions of what would later become hang gliders, automobiles, robots, and much more. Gene Barretta cleverly shows how Leonardo’s ideas—many inspired by his love of nature—foreshadowed modern inventions, offering a window into the future....

Title : Neo Leo: The Ageless Ideas of Leonardo Da Vinci
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780805087031
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 40 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Neo Leo: The Ageless Ideas of Leonardo Da Vinci Reviews

  • Lisa Vegan
    2019-04-07 09:56

    This is such a well-designed book. On one page are the histories of various new at the time inventions and on the facing pages are the many years before (decades, centuries) of the ideas of da Vinci, via his drawings. It shows what an inventive and forward thinker da Vinci was. I like how at the end of the book (view spoiler)[ some of da Vinci’s ideas are brought to life in the present, and it’s amazing that they actually work! The artificial heart valve and single span bridge impressed me the most.(hide spoiler)] What I found sad is how many of his notes are missing, and how many other inventive ideas he had that we might never know about.I love how so many of da Vinci’s inventions/ideas came from his observation of nature.As a left-handed person, I really appreciated da Vinci’s backwards writing. I’m definitely grateful for modern ballpoint pens! The man was truly brilliant.The illustrations are great: eye catching and colorful and educational. The style, while not my favorite on its own, works perfectly for this subject matter.This is also a great book for vegan and vegetarian children. One of my favorite da Vinci quotes (nothing about da Vinci being vegetarian in this book, unfortunately, although it does mention that da Vinci considered himself a pacifist): “I have from an early age abjured the use of meat, and the time will come when men such as I will look upon the murder of animals as they now look upon the murder of men.”

  • Dolly
    2019-03-30 10:13

    This is a fascinating look at the genius and inventiveness that is credited to Leonardo da Vinci. Just a fraction of his notes have been found, but what we have seen shows creativity, precise scientific observation and a shrewd ability to copy what he found in nature. The way the book is arranged, with the first known use of an item that he thought up and depicted in his notes as the "Neo" items, alongside his depictions (the "Leo" items), shows his foresight and amazing scientific discoveries. It's quite a long book, and although we read it in one setting, I'd recommend breaking it up into two to keep a child's interest. We really liked the ending, where more of his inventions were being developed and tested, even today. The backward writing notes is a fun way to insert puzzles into the story. We had fun deciphering the words, and we were able to do it even without a mirror! This book was featured as one of the selections for the November 2011 Inventors-themed reads for the Picture-Book Club in the Children's Books Group here at Goodreads.

  • Betsy
    2019-04-09 05:55

    Even if you’ve never felt the slightest inclination to write a non-fiction picture book a day of your life, it’s still possible to take a gander at a book, blink twice, and say to yourself, “Now why didn’t I think of that?” Today’s example: Gene Barretta's newest. When you’re an American child you are inundated with a lot of fancy names of folks, most white, many male, and almost all dead. Dead white men predominate and blend together. It’s hardest to remember them if they were simply aligned with concepts rather than things. This is why I think that most kids are taught about historical persons who invented or drew things. Inventors and artists make up the bulk of my library’s biography section and rarely do the two occupations intersect. By logical extension, then, Leonardo de Vinci should by rights be the most memorable man kids are taught about in school. And while there are some great Leonardo bios for youngsters out there (Leonardo: Beautiful Dreamer, Leonardo da Vinci by Diane Stanley, Leonardo da Vinci by Kathleen Krull, etc.) when it comes to making the man pertinent to kids today I can’t think of a smarter book than Neo Leo: The Ageless Ideas of Leonardo da Vinci. Read the concept, page through the book, and take in every last the word. Your conclusion? If you’re a kid it might be that Leonardo was one heckuva genius. If you’re an adult, it might be, “Now why didn’t I think of that?”We all know that Leonardo was a fan of sketching ideas for inventions that were possible, but could not be created during his time for one reason or another. So were they just silly ideas or was there some merit to them? Gene Barretta singles out at least fifteen of Leonardo’s ideas and sketches, then pairs them with the inventions that would come later on down the road. The "Neo” of each two page spread is the inventor who created the invention that “Leo” (on the opposite page) surmised long ago. For example, 1891’s Otto Lillienthal and his first successful hang glider is paired with Leonardo’s thoughts about gliders inspired by watching leaves drift through the air. Everything from the helicopter to the aqualung to the automatic rotisserie are displayed. In the end we see some particularly new and contemporary inventions that are specifically based on Leonardo’s calculations. A Bibliography at the conclusion rounds out the text.It’s not as if Barretta didn’t do this kind of book before, of course. Prior to publishing Neo Leo he produced the amusing, Now & Ben: The Modern Inventions of Benjamin Franklin. But Franklin, cool as he is, isn’t Leonardo. He didn’t anticipate the helicopter, for crying out loud. And while he was many many MANY things, an artist on par with Leonardo’s talents wasn’t one of them. Barretta’s real skill in both Now & Ben and Neo Leo comes in writing biographies about a great man in simple words that aren’t too hard for the child who has grasped the finer points of early reading but hasn’t quite yet come to terms with full-length chapter books. I've dealt with such kids before and finding them easy reading interesting books on non-fiction scientific topics is rarely easy.The illustrations may prove a different kind of lure. The images in this book are watercolors on cold-press paper, but the colors are far more vibrant than your average fluffy bunny fare. The Bibliography, back publication page, and bulk of Leonardo’s ideas look to be written on a brilliant golden parchment. Characters are colorful and fun without ever becoming too cartoonish. And while it take a little getting used to, I didn’t mind the layout. For example, sometimes Barretta will place a later invention before Leonardo’s notes, but on the opposite page. This becomes all the more strange when two later inventions (the 1885 automobile and the 1940 robots) correlate to just one page of information that pertains to both on the opposite page. Once you know how to read the book this doesn’t become as much of a problem, but I wouldn’t necessarily call it intuitive. And generally Barretta’s art fits the pages, though there is one scene that is just the strangest imagining of a full-frontal dolphin I have ever seen.Barretta's art looks simple, but he’s a cheeky one. The opening two-page spread of Leonardo looking about and sketching may strike you as just a way of setting Leo within the context of his times. Closer inspection yields a treasure trove of rewards, though. I first noticed the fact that a woman in one of the windows bore no small resemblance to the Mona Lisa. And that cross hatched insert on the building above a window... isn’t that a rough approximation of his Vitruvian Man? Suddenly I realized that the whole spread consisted of hidden odes to Leonardo’s artistic work. A woman leaning of with a bird upon her back could easily become an angel. There are more too, so for any kid learning about Leonardo it might be fun to have them try and count how many homages they can find on a single spread. Credit to Barretta, he takes time to also include moments when we’re not entirely certain that Leo was the one responsible for one note or another. The bicycle is a good example of this. “While historians agree that it is not his drawing, some think that a pupil drew it after studying a bicycle prototype in Leonardo’s workshop. Others say it was drawn as a prank by someone centuries later.” I like that the author is honest about this. Some correlations feel more of a stretch than others. Projecting images through a lens does not necessarily beat a straight path to movie projectors, but it’s certainly a step in the right direction. Of course, it is a little confusing when the “Neo” section doesn’t credit the creator of a particular invention while other “Neo”s do. The cooking rotisserie and the locomotive, for example, appear in a “Neo” section without much in the way of explanation, separating them from other parts of the book. At the beginning of Neo Leo Barretta writes in his Author's Note that Leonardo wrote backwards and no one really knows why. “Some suggest that he wanted to make it difficult for people to read his ideas and steal them. Another theory is that writing backward prevented smudging his ink.” Barretta then proceeds to put mirror writing on each page. Initially I found this tiresome, but eventually I came around to the idea. The book’s ultimate goal, aside from wanting to inform, of course, is to amuse and entice the child reader. And if that means coercing them into holding up a biography to a mirror every other page, so be it. After all, when I was a kid I loved those Encyclopedia Brown mysteries where you had to hold an image up to a mirror in order to get the answer to a crime.If a children’s work of non-fiction highlights a historical figure’s work more than their life, that book tends to be written for older kids. I had a child of eight in my library just the other day desperate for any kind of non-fiction with a technical element that would pique his interest and discuss inventions in some manner. He wanted something interesting, easy enough to read, but with some complex ideas at hand. Had it been on my shelf, Neo Leo would have been my first choice for him. It’s the rare non-fiction text with an eye to the younger readers. A great idea for a book, and a truly enjoyable end product. Like no other Leonardo da Vinci title for kids out there today.Ages 6-10.

  • Kaye Cloutman
    2019-03-30 04:05

    More often than not, Leonardo da Vinci gets put in a box together with Rembrandt, Monet, Michelangelo, Picasso, and Van Gogh. While all of these artists are to be revered and appreciated, many would agree that Leonardo da Vinci far exceeded all their combined talents. He was a true genius, somewhat in the same category as Nikola Tesla. Da Vinci was a real visionary and way beyond his years with his ideas and contraptions, but there was much more to him than that. In Neo Leo, author Gene Barretta presents us with da Vinci’s other brilliant abilities that are often overlooked. As a follow up to Now and Ben, where past and present events were illustrated and compared in opposite pages, Neo Leo cleverly shows how da Vinci’s dreams-many of which were inspired by his study of nature-foreshadowed modern inventions, offering a window to the future.Neo Leo is a wealth of historical information with which kids will surely love to be familiar. Many of us grew up in an era where there was no Internet, and information such as what Barretta presents here could only be found in the most insipid way-perusing library stacks of thick books with crusty pages and gleaning what we could from microscopic fonts in the footnotes of confusing research books. Today’s generation is very fortunate to have resources such as this book, which provides them with colorful, vivid, relatable material that will make them eager to learn. The book will inspire them to research other topics to understand da Vinci’s genius better; my own daughter had to look up some of the names that appeared in this book like The Wright Brothers, Otto Lilienthal, Thomas Edison, Thomas Paine, and Jacques Cousteau, to name a few. Neo Leo is an educational success because the details presented elicit curiosity and a desire to learn more. The author is to be commended for his ability to pull his desired audience back to opening a book and reading through its pages, which is very hard to do since we are in the age of modern technology when our young often prefer gaining knowledge through audio-visual means rather than from printed media. Even the most computer savvy child will be intrigued and inspired by this book.The illustrations are done in a whimsical, yet detailed manner. Remarkable renderings that only a meticulous artist like Barretta could do (like “Mona Lisa” and the hand drawings of da Vinci) are comically strewn all over the pages of this wonderful read. Pay attention to the tidbits as well, because they provide further enlightenment about da Vinci’s idiosyncrasies. Make sure you have a mirror on hand to read some of his inscriptions, which you may mistake initially as typographical errors. If you want to make the Renaissance come alive for your children or students, this book is the way to go… and maybe, just maybe, the world would be a much better place with young aspiring Neo-Leos in it.

  • Sophia
    2019-04-18 04:18

    Leonardo da Vinci is my favorite inventor! I like learning about him!

  • JinaKim
    2019-04-01 05:52

    This book is about Leonardo da Vinci who was extraordinary person that thought of all these ideas over five hundred years ago. It will good to read for 2-5 graders as well. I like the illustration because it would compare his inventions and others' one after his death so, it could be easy to understand what he did earlier; the Leonardo's notes were fabulous! His ideas are finally coming to our comfy life!!

  • Mills Bryant
    2019-03-24 06:55

    This book was about Leonardo da Vinci, and how his love for nature fueled his mind to create wonderful ideas that werent fleshed out for another 500 years. He was a man before his time, and this book simplifies his complexity into a group of thoughts that children can appreciate and enjoy. I really enjoyed this book, and I thought that it could be very useful in the classroom to inspire innovation, individuality and creativity.

    2019-04-03 05:14

    Playful, edge-to-edge illustrations and cheerily worded nuggets of history, mystery, physics, and biology paint a thrilling picture of a brilliantly curious and creative man that will tickle the scientist in all of us.You can listen in on our chat about this book on ourJust One More Book! Children's Book Podcast.Right now, you can test out over 60 of Leonardo da Vinci's prototypes at Leonardo da Vinci: Man Inventor Genius.Other books mentioned:Now and Ben: The Modern Inventions of Benjamin FranklinMore intriguing lives on JOMB:One Beetle Too Many — The Extraordinary Adventures of Charles DarwinThe Fantastic Undersea Life of Jacques CousteauMarco PoloPiano Starts Here: The Young Art TatumBuffalo MusicPriscilla and the HollyhocksThe Value of Believing in Yourself: The Story of Louis PasteurWe’d love to hear your thoughts on a favourite children’s book. Leave a voice message on our JOMB listener hotline, +1-206-350-6487, so we can include your audio in our show

  • Quinn Rollins
    2019-04-11 10:07

    Neo Leo: The Ageless Ideas of Leonardo da Vinci is a 2009 picture book by Gene Barretta. The author and illustrator has a similar book on Benjamin Franklin, but that doesn't make this one any less enjoyable. Leonardo da Vinci was fascinated by the world around him. He studied animals and people. He watched plants grow and birds fly. He explored the mighty rivers. Nature was his teacher. It inspired his remarkable studies and inventions. With that brief biography, Barretta sets up the reader, and then delivers his thesis--that da Vinci was a man before his time, and that his designs were too expensive, sophisticated, or controversial to be built. But, hundreds of years later, we're catching up. What follows is 24 pages of two-page comparisons. On one side of the book, you have "Neo"-- a modern interpretation of da Vinci's plans. On the other side of the book is "Leo" -- his version of the same invention. Some examples:Neo: Adolf Eugen Fick makes the first pair of successful contact lenses, 1887.Leo: da Vinci's diagrams show detailed concepts of a contact lens, using light and water to study vision and magnification.Neo: Captain H.W. Mortimore uses the first tank in World War I, 1916.Leo: using turtles as a model, da Vinci designs an armored weapons platform.There are more than a dozen of these comparisons, sometimes with direct connections between da Vinci's version and the "modern" invention, sometimes with a more tenuous link. In every case, the genius of Leonardo da Vinci is startling. The comparisons are interesting, and Barretta's colorful, cartoony illustrations are engaging for young children, but detailed enough for adults to appreciate his artistry--and more importantly, the artistry and ideas of Leonardo da Vinci. Barretta includes notes on the da Vinci side of the pages in his "mirror writing," and my sons found that detail a lot of fun. This was a book that was enjoyable to read with my sons, and all three of us learned more about da Vinci and his world. If you're interested in history, inventions, or art, this is a great picture book. Barretta includes suggestions for DVDs, books and websites at the back of the book, so if you or your kids wants to research his ideas further, there's more to go. Pick up Neo Leo: The Ageless Ideas of Leonardo da Vinci and learn how he was a man ahead of his time.

  • David
    2019-04-06 10:13

    Neo Leo: The Ageless Ideas of Leonardo Da Vinci by Gene Barretta is a clever informational picturebook book about the great scientist, inventor, engineer and artist and his many ideas which fore-shadowed modern inventions.An author's note begins the book, introducing Leonardo and noting his use of mirror writing, which Barretta uses when discussing his ideas and inventions. Barretta's text, with accompanying illustrations, focuses on over a dozen of Leonardo's sketches and ideas, pairing them with related inventions which appeared later. The "Neo" part of the two page spreads is the inventor who is credited with an invention that "Leo" imagined long ago. Toward the end of the book we hear of six examples of working inventions specifically based on Leonardo’s calculations. A bibliography, including websites and DVD's concludes the book.Barretta's watercolor illustrations have child appeal without appearing too cartoonish. On an early page, Berretta includes illustrations that match Da Vinci's famous paintings: Mona Lisa (eating pasta), a window protrait of Cecilia Gallerari with ermnine, and an arrangement of women and a child that is similar to the portrait Virgin and Child with St. Anne. Someone very familiar Leonardo's art and sketches will find more connections within the figures portrayed. This is a very clever way to appeal to children and show the breadth of Leonardo's interests, genius, and vision. While the arrangement may take a little getting used to, it works well. While the mirror writing is tough to read as written in cursive without a mirror, if you use one it becomes a snap to read. A number of other inventors are mentioned which may spur yourg readers to do some research on them. Irecommend this book for school and public library collections. For ages 6 to 10, science, biography, Leonardo Da Vinci, invention, and fans of Leonardo and Gene Barretta.

  • Rachel
    2019-03-31 09:08

    This book is all about how Leonardo da Vinci came up for the idea for many modern inventions back in the 15th and 16th centuries, 400 years before they were invented properly in the 19th and 20th centuries. The book discusses his plans and drawings for the first man-powered aircraft, a glider, contact lenses, a projector, a single-span bridge, tanks whose designs were based off of turtles and other war paraphenalia (such as grenades, machine guns and a giant catapult called a trebuchet) , the helicopter, and he improved upon the designs of scuba gear. Leonardo also figured out how blood travels through the heart, steam power and air pressure, and robots and automobiles. The book talks about modern inventors who uses his notes to create prototypes of his inventions. It's pretty crazy to think that we still haven't found 2/3 of his notes and just think about all the things we discovered about him already! Recommended for ages 5-10, 4 stars. I find Leonardo da Vinci to be an amazing artist and inventor. I've been to Leonardo's museum in Vinci and was fortunate to see a lot of his inventions as they were revealed in his copious notes. So when I found out about his involvement in the development of robots, the topic for my latest DiscoveryTime (Preschool Storytime + STEM), I had to add a page from the book to the storytime. Leonardo was the first person to create robots in the late 15th or early 16th century in the form of a robot knight and the drawings for a mechanical lion. There is actually a full adult book on Leonardo's robots, but it is pretty technicial, so couldn't use that volume.

  • S10_Jessica Oster
    2019-04-11 08:15

    format: picture bookage: grades 2-8protagonist: Leonardo DaVinciThis is a picture book biography about all of the inventions DaVinci helped to create. The illustrations are bright and offer a fun way of looking at the roots of different inventions based on DaVinci's many pages of notes, without going to far into detail. It also includes some interaction with the text as it has places where readers can read more about different inventions by holding the book up to a mirror to read the backward printed text... apparently DaVinci wrote backwards so as not to smear his writing since he was left handed, something I didn't know. This is a great way to introduce one of history's most flavorful people. Having only known DaVinci for his artwork, I was amazed at all the different things he dabbled in and ultimately led the way in discovering (such as the hang glider and robots). As a forerunner for many of the things we use today, such as bicycles and airplanes, this book does a great job at focusing on DaVinci's work rather than his life and does so in a very create and interactive manner. I highly recommend this book. For use in a classroom, I think it would best be used to encourage younger students to always use their imagination to create new things and used to introduce DaVinci to older kids.

  • Beth Maline
    2019-03-27 06:14

    This was one of the first books I picked, and I loved it. The illustrations are clever, and introduce a young reader (of maybe 7-10 years of age) to a painter that adults are all familiar, but takes the reader through the mind of Leonardo da Vinci the inventor, the creator, the dreamer. While we are all familiar with how he created wonderful paintings - the timeless classics - this book introduces robots and flying planes (gliders) to the reader in cheerful drawings and this offbeat genius.Boys will be particularly intrigued by this book as they can play with a mirror and explore backward handwriting (which was the actual style of Leonardo da Vinci) and there is a lot of history here as well. What initially drew me to this book was the idea of Leonardo da Vinci being discussed by a senior citizen and a young person - think of that interaction - but what grabs you in this book is the simple way you move into the mind of a genius. I think the story will inspire some creations on the part of young people, and since my theme seems to be to challenge the norm and move toward your dreams, I think a few may find inspiration and start tinkering as a result of reading and discussing this book.Barretta, G. (2009). Neo Leo: the ageless ideas of Leonardo da Vinci. New York: Henry Holt.

  • Inhabiting Books
    2019-04-08 03:57

    This very fun and eminently readable book highlights the inventions of probably the most well-known Renaissance Man. Leonardo da Vinci's fascination with the natural world inspired him to create all kinds of drawings and inventions based on the patterns he saw in nature. Gene Barretta has shown that so many "modern" inventions were products of da Vinci's mind hundreds of years earlier (e.g. flying machines, contact lenses, movie projectors, single-span bridges, tanks, gears and chains, etc.)The author juxtaposes the "Neo" pages with "Leo" pages. The "Neo" pages feature other inventors who created a more modern working version of inventions then shown on the "Leo" page.My girls and I loved this book and are fascinated by both the pictures and the story. And I love it because not only do they laugh their way through the reading, but they gain important knowledge about one of the world's greatest men. How can you beat that?(Also check out Barretta's book entitled *Now and Ben*, written earlier than this book and done in a similar style.)

  • Ruth Ann
    2019-04-05 09:07

    At my local library, this picture book is located in the 600's. I would recommend it for students ages 8-12. The book focuses on the ideas found in Leonardo's original notes. On the lefthand page, in full color, readers will find each invention as it first appeared in the modern world (Neo). On the right-hand page, in brown tones, Leonardo's version is shown with backwards script. (Leo always wrote backwards, perhaps because he was left-handed and this prevented the ink from being smeared. Readers will be amazed by the vast number of invention ideas, including: ornithopter, glider, contact lenses, single-span bridge, tanks, double hulls for boats, a heart model and much more.

  • Rebecca
    2019-04-20 07:59

    So cool! The "Neo" of this book shows inventions in use today, usually credited to a "modern" inventor. The "Leo" portion, on the facing page, shows how these ideas were foreshadowed by the ideas and sketches of Leodardo da Vinci. His bridge design shows how the triangle is the strongest shape (math tie-in). "He considered himself a pacifist but looked at weapons as a design challenge." I was amazed to read that people are still creating things based on his sketches, and that 2/3 of his notes are still missing! Ye gads!I also learned that I cannot read mirror writing, which is included here on the "Leo" pages for authenticity.

  • Victoria
    2019-04-15 04:16

    What: This book is about the timeless inventions of Leonardo da Vinci. It details his work on airplanes and also shows his notes that he wrote backwards. This book also shows the inventors that got their ideas from da Vinci. It is a very colorful book that is great for capturing children's attention.So What: When I bought this book, I had gotten it to create a lesson plan off of. I truly enjoyed it! I have also used it when assessing my students. Now What: I would like to use this either in a text set of inventors or as part of a history lesson.

  • Anne
    2019-04-18 11:04

    Considering it's a 40 page picture book, there is a LOT of information stuffed into here. Almost too much. The backwards text in a weird script is off-putting. I'm not going to read this in front of a mirror. The order of events in the book makes absolutely no sense. It doesn't have to be in chronological order, but there isn't a discernible pattern. I can't imagine reading this aloud or giving it to a child younger than 8. If it weren't for the historical and cultural content of the book, this would be two stars, but the information is still interesting, despite the lacking presentation.

  • Shelli
    2019-03-25 04:11

    Every time I read something about Leonardo Da Vinci, I am amazed. How can one person have such a grasp of knowledge on so many varied topics? Flying contractions, weapons of war, underwater breathing apparatus's, the mechanics of the human heart, auto-matrons, the list goes on, and on, and on. All this hundreds of years before anyone else was thinking or researching these ideas. Most of this was Leonard achieved by being observant of life around him. That in itself is something that seems to be lacking in modern day society.

  • Jenny
    2019-03-26 04:07

    Leonardo da Vinci was brilliant and ingenious and it's hard to imagine that about 2/3 of his notes have been he may have had a million other ideas that we may never know about. I find him to be one of the most fascinating people in history. This was a great introduction into his ideas and how they have shaped today's inventions. I liked how Barretta showed both Da Vinci's ideas and then gave credit to the modern person who created them and made them work successfully. I learned a couple of things from this book and my kids were very impressed by it as well.

  • Matthew
    2019-04-20 07:20

    The great Leonardo da Vinci's many inventions are the focus here. This book compares today's most popular contraptions to the designs found in Da Vinci's notes, and surprise, his notes exhibit that he was ahead of his time in a lot of ways. It's a simple book with call and answer style text structure. There are additional notes written on certain pages, but they are written backwards in tribute to Da Vinci's peculiar habit of writing that way. Good read.

  • Melissa Stewart
    2019-04-14 10:55

    Leonardo Da Vinci is certainly not a new figure in picture book biographies, but Gene Baretta has found a novel way to approach the artist and the many inventions sketched in his notebooks. Each spread features fun representations of contraptions in sa Vinci's notebboks alongside the real-life device that now exists. Overall, the book shows clearly just how much ahead of his time da Vinci was and how his ideas were spot on. Great book.

  • Thabata
    2019-03-24 06:55

    A great little book that dives into history to explore one of the most intelligent and creative minds that existed. It tells about Leonardo’s different inventions and their equivalent in the modern days. In a simple exposition it presents to the reader a range of fields in which he dwelt. It is a very curious book which helps young minds to value people who came before them, which imagined and made the world a much more modern place to live.

  • Heidi-Marie
    2019-04-12 12:01

    I definitely learned more from this book than I knew before. It was interesting to see some of the things Leonardo Da Vinci researched and theorized about. A fun twist in getting the reader to read some notes that were written backwards like Da Vinci wrote. However, the cursive font they used made it a lot harder to read!Informative and an interesting presentation make this, I think, a good choice for a Beehive nomination.

  • Sandy Brehl
    2019-04-05 11:18

    This is the fourth time I've read this book and it won't be the last. What a great way to introduce Leonardo DaVinci's brilliance to readers of any age. Even those who are aware of his various accomplishments will find surprises here in the details of his quirky habits and many unfulfilled creations. In addition, those who are credited with inventions that he originally conceived receive due attention and reference in the back matter. Colorful illustrations appeal but also clarify concepts.

  • Sam Bloom
    2019-04-18 05:54

    I didn't really love the illustrations in this one - a bit too cutesy and cartoonish for the subject matter, imho - but still a really well-done book. Actually, there was one illustration that was great - the opening spread, with Leo on the left side looking across a medieval village. Art buffs should be able to spot several references to his paintings - not being an art historian, I can only be sure of one (Mona Lisa), but I'm pretty sure there's other stuff in there, too.

  • Marcie
    2019-04-09 11:10

    There's a nice book trailer at to this interesting and nicely illustrated biography. Not often is a non-fiction book on the CCBA nominee list, but this one may appeal to children enough for them to nominate it. Author is from Pennsylvania. I read in the spring.

  • Lindsey Rogers
    2019-04-02 12:02

    Great book to introduce students to a well known scientist. Great book to stimulate students imagination! This book is for 3rd to 5th graders. Students could use this book and then think of their own ideas.

  • Rocheal Hoffman
    2019-04-18 06:59

    For upper elementary grades, this book introduces students to a well-known scientist. This can be the beginning of a unit study. Students may further choose to investigate a scientist of their own. Great book to stimulate imagination.

  • Amy
    2019-04-07 09:02

    An interesting look at Leonardo da Vinci and his amazing inventions and ideas! The book is definitely intended for "older" childre...4th grade and older although I read it out loud to my 5 year old and she seemed to enjoy parts of it.