Ada Lovelace, Poet of Science: The First Computer Programmer

Diane Stanley, illus. by Jessie Hartland. S&S/Wiseman, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-4814-5249-6
Stanley (Mozart: The Wonder Child) delivers a breezy but insightful overview of the curiosity and determination that drove Ada Lovelace (1815–1852) to pursue her intellectual passions, tracing her childhood dreams of flight, her friendship and working relationship with Charles Babbage, and her pioneering programming work in service of promoting Babbage’s Analytical Machine. Hartland (How the Meteorite Got to the Museum) keeps the mood light in loopy gouache cartoons that humorously portray Lovelace as the creative and intelligent product of parents “as different as chalk and cheese”; in facing family portraits, the “rational, respectable, and strict” Lady Byron stares uncomfortably at her husband, Lord Byron, who looks rakish in multiple senses of the word. An author’s note and timeline conclude a thoroughly engaging look at a trailblazing mathematical mind. Ages 4–8. Author’s agent: Marcia Wernick, Wernick & Pratt. Illustrator’s agent: Brenda Bowen, Sanford J. Greenburger Associates. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 08/15/2016
Release date: 10/04/2016
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