Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty and David Roberts

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Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty and David Roberts

Category: For Sharing
Rating: 4.5/5
Reviewer: Madeline Wheatley
Reviewed by Madeline Wheatley
Summary: Shy Rosie Revere loves to make gadgets and gizmos but is upset when adults laugh at her creations. Her Great-Great Aunt Rose shows her that things going wrong can in fact be the first step to success.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 32 Date: September 2013
Publisher: Abrams
ISBN: 9781419708459

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Andrea Beaty and David Roberts make a great team. Their previous book, Iggy Peck, Architect, is a best seller and has a lot in common with Rosie Revere, Engineer. Both stories offer hope and encouragement to children who feel at odds and left out of the mainstream. Rosie is very shy and cannot bring herself to join in at school. But at home she sparkles and comes to life while building inventive gadgets from odds and ends, often using things rescued from the bin. When her favourite uncle laughs at one of her contraptions (made especially for him), Rosie is mortified and it takes the exuberant help of another relative to bring her back out of her shell.

Great-Great Aunt Rose teaches little Rosie that the only true failure can come if you quit which is a sound piece of advice for every age group, great-great aunts included. We are told that her great-great-aunt Rose was a true dynamo, who’d worked building airplanes a long time ago. The picture that accompanies this text is a lovely take on an old World War II poster of Rosie the Riveter, who represented American women working in factories to support the war effort and whose slogan was we can do it. This link opens the door to a number of visual nods in the book to the history of women in aviation. Now that may make the story sound a bit heavy going, but it isn’t. You don’t have to get the references to enjoy the plot. The very shy four and a half year old who looked at the book with me was mainly interested in how Rosie was going to deal with people laughing at her inventions. She could clearly see herself in the quiet child sat on the school bench on the opening page.

The story is written in rhyming couplets and flows along with ease. The language used could lead to a few discussions depending on the age of the audience. My young listener was mystified by the idea of helium pants even though the illustration shows the wearer floating in the air. Once we’d established that this invention was pretty similar to balloon pants it was considered an excellent idea.

So, all in all, a book with a great sense of rhythm and lots to discuss that could encourage girls to experiment, invent and get things wrong without worrying about it. Halleluiah!

For further reading, have a look at:

Alexander and the Wind Up Mouse by Leo Lionni

Bob the Bursting Bear by Michael Rosen and Tony Ross

OK, you got me. There is not really a bulletproof reason for linking to either of these two books, except that they are about working out how to cope in a world that worries you. The first is very thoughtful and the second is very funny."

Buy Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty and David Roberts at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty and David Roberts at Amazon.co.uk.


Buy Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty and David Roberts at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty and David Roberts at Amazon.com.


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