On a Beam of Light: A Story of Albert Einstein

10 min. Dist. by Dreamscape Media. 2015. $38.99. ISBN 9781681411095.
K-Gr 3—Jennifer Berne's concise biography (Chronicle, 2013) of Albert Einstein begins with his birth and first few years, when he was a quiet and observant child. A present of a compass from his father sparks Einstein's fascination with the mysteries of the universe, leading to his study of light, sound, magnetism, and gravity. Berne touches on his humble career in the patent office and how the theories Einstein sent to a scientific magazine led to an invitation to teach. The content lightly touches on atoms and the idea of everything being in constant motion through time and space. The slight animation of Vladimir Radunsky's illustrations—the moving smoke from Einstein's pipe and the wagging tale of a dog—creates visual interest for those with short attention spans. David Colacci's narration is calm and steady, with a hint of wonder to match the tone of the content.
VERDICT An early start in science for the extremely young, this biography encourages curiosity and exploration.

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