Thursday, July 30, 2015

Mesmerized: How Ben Franklin Solved a Mystery that Baffled All of France by Mara Rockliff & illustrated by Iacopo Bruno

About the book: Discover how Benjamin Franklin’s scientific method challenged a certain Dr. Mesmer’s mysterious powers in a whimsical look at a true moment in history.

The day Ben Franklin first set foot in Paris, France, he found the city all abuzz. Everyone was talking about something new. Remarkable. Thrilling. Strange. Something called Science!

But soon the straightforward American inventor Benjamin Franklin is upstaged by a compelling and enigmatic figure: Dr. Mesmer. In elaborately staged shows, Mesmer, wearing a fancy coat of purple silk and carrying an iron wand, convinces the people of Paris that he controls a magic force that can make water taste like a hundred different things, cure illness, and control thoughts! But Ben Franklin is not convinced. Will his practical approach of observing, hypothesizing, and testing get to the bottom of the mysterious Mesmer’s tricks? A rip-roaring, lavishly illustrated peek into a fascinating moment in history shows the development and practice of the scientific method—and reveals the amazing power of the human mind.
My thoughts: As an introduction to non-fiction, this picture book captures the essence of many things. The illustrations are humorously droll. The artist uses reds, browns, and burnt sienna to give richness to the compartmentalized illustrations.  The typesetting lends emphasis and French eloquence, Merci beaucoup.

Young readers will learn....

  • That Ben Franklin was an American Statesman, an inventor, and a scientist.
  • That a method of healing in France was debunked by Ben Franklin using the scientific method.
  • The origin of the word MESMERIZED.
Young readers will enjoy this delightfully informative and educational story as Ben Franklin goes about the eloquently fashionable French Court debunking with the scientific method. This foray into the realm of non-fiction will leave young readers asking for more. Desiring to learn more. Looking to their librarians, teachers, and parents for more opportunities to learn about words, history, science.

DISCLOSURE: I was provided a complimentary copy by the publisher, Candlewick Press, to facilitate this review. Opinions are just mine. I was not compensated for this review.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing this book at Booknificent Thursday on! I appreciate reading your thoughts on it.


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