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Queen of Physics - (People Who Shaped Our World) by Teresa Robeson (Hardcover)

Queen of Physics - (People Who Shaped Our World) by  Teresa Robeson (Hardcover) - image 1 of 1
Queen of Physics - (People Who Shaped Our World) by  Teresa Robeson (Hardcover) - image 1 of 1
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About this item


Number of Pages: 48

Genre: Juvenile Nonfiction

Sub-Genre: Biography & Autobiography

Series Title: People Who Shaped Our World

Format: Hardcover

Publisher: Sterling Children's Books

Age Range: 9-12 years

Book theme: Science & Technology

Author: Teresa Robeson

Language: English

Street Date: October 8, 2019
TCIN: 77894753
UPC: 9781454932208
Item Number (DPCI): 247-63-8997


"To have a girl child in China at the turn of the last century was not considered fortunate for most families. But the Wu family was not like most, and Chien Shiung was not only encouraged to go to school (her parents were educators), she was told she could be whatever she wanted. That support was taken to heart, and Robeson details in short but informative bites of text how the young woman extended her education, moving ever further from home and finally to the U.S., where she would delve deeply into her passion, the study of atoms. Writing biographies about people from different times and cultures can have challenges, but trying to explain physics--especially Wu's specialization, beta decay--in a picture-book biography certainly ups the ante. Robeson surmounts these almost effortlessly, getting to the heart of Wu's professional life and simply detailing her many accomplishments, as well as informing her audience how Wu was slighted when it came to awards like the Nobel Prize, with male colleagues taking the honors. The text's accessibility is supported and enhanced by Huang's collage-style artwork that captures Wu's dedication and willingness to take on leadership roles both in the scientific community and in leading political protests in China. Wu Chien Shiung's story is remarkable--and so is the way this book does it justice. A short biography and a dictionary of physics terms is appended." --Booklist (Starred review)

"A wonderfully written biography of an important woman scientist hardly known outside of her field of physics. Yes, the difficult science is thoroughly understandable in this picture book biography, but it is the heroism and ethical components of the main character, Madame Wu, whom we follow from birth into old age that centers this powerful little book. Not just for little girls, but for children of all ages. About achievement, honesty, hard work that follows a passion. Do not miss this one." --Jane Yolen, author of Owl Moon, How Do Dinosaurs Say Goodnight, and many other books

"Robeson details the life of Wu Chien Shiung, a female physicist of the mid-20th century who completed important, often unrecognized work in beta decay. Fortunate to have parents who started a girls' school in China, Wu was educated like her brothers, attended university, and led student protests to 'resist Japanese invaders' just before WWII. After moving to the U.S., she investigates parity and beta decay in California and New York, often facing prejudice, and is passed over for the Nobel Prize as her male colleagues receive accolades. All the while, she perseveres, remembering her Baba's words: 'Just put your head down and/ keep walking forward.' Huang's stylized illustrations feature chalkboards full of equations and backdrops with swirling nuclear symbols. A list of Wu's "firsts" (first woman instructor at Princeton, for example) and a glossary of nuclear terms close this bittersweet biography of a brilliant woman." --Publishers Weekly

"Huang utilizes spirited mixed-media images with a neutral palette to illuminate Shiung's journey." --Kirkus

"This biographic picture book chronicles the life of Wu Chien Shiung, with a focus on her career success in physics, as well as obstacles she overcame as an Asian woman, her political advocacy, and her contributions to science. The book also contains a lot of history specific to the last turn of the 20th century. Huang's pictures are in full color. On each page, the text amounts to less than a quarter of the page. The vocabulary and text concepts are advanced for a picture book, but key terms can be found in the glossary. . . . This book would make an excellent supplement to support diverse representation, especially about women scientists and/or Asian women battling and overcoming sexism and racism." --School Library Journal
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Guest Ratings & Reviews

5.0 out of 5 stars with 2 reviews
100% would recommend
2 recommendations

Superb STEM bio!

5 out of 5 stars
Would recommend
Sha - 11 days ago
There’s nothing like a picture book biography to introduce young readers (or any readers!) to a new hero. Wu Chien Shiung was a brilliant young girl at a time when that wasn’t always appreciated. Her parents encouraged her to pursue her scientific studies anyway. She grew up to face even more prejudice as a Chinese woman in the US. I love how Robeson points out the physicist’s sadness, disappointment, and discouragement…and the fact that she didn’t let those things get in the way of her passion. A fantastic bio about a woman in STEM and her family’s love.
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A captivating story of persistence, brilliance and dedication.

5 out of 5 stars
Would recommend
KidLit Book Reviewer - 11 days ago, Verified purchaser
Inspiring and entertaining, sprinkled with lyrical language and STEM science insights, Teresa Robeson masterfully portrays a heroine heretofore hidden from history in QUEEN OF PHYSICS. Wu Chien-Shiung, nicknamed Queen of Physics, was born in China when girls weren't educated, seized upon every available educational opportunity, and eventually came to the United States. Wu's groundbreaking experiments on beta decay and parity were critical to her male colleagues' success as Nobel prize winners. A captivating story of persistence, brilliance and dedication.
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