Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, basketball legend and the NBA's alltime leading scorer, champions a lineup
of little-known African-American inventors in this lively, kid-friendly book.
Did you know that James West invented the microphone in your cell phone? That Fred Jones invented the refrigerated truck that makes supermarkets possible? Or that Dr. Percy Julian synthesized cortisone from soy, easing untold people's pain? These are just some of the black inventors and innovators scoring big points in this dynamic look at several unsung heroes who shared a desire to improve people's lives. Offering profiles with fast facts on flaps and framed by a funny contemporary story featuring two feisty twins, here is a nod to the minds behind the gamma electric cell and the ice-cream scoop, improvements to traffic lights, open-heart surgery, and more - inventors whose ingenuity and perseverance against great odds made our world safer, better, and brighter.
About the Author
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is recognized by "Sports Illustrated" and "Time" magazine as history's greatest basketball player (he is the NBA's all-time leading scorer). The author of several "New York Times" bestsellers, Kareem's previous books include "Giant Steps, Kareem, Black Profiles in Courage, A Season on the Reservation, " and "Brothers in Arms." Since his retirement as a player in the NBA, Kareem has worked as a special assistant coach for the Los Angeles Lakers and acted as a volunteer coach for children on the White Mountain Apache reservation in Whiteriver, Arizona. "On the Shoulders of Giants" is currently in production as a documentary film.
Raymond Obstfeld is an associate professor of English at Orange Coast College, and is the author of more than forty books of fiction, poetry, and nonfiction, including studies of the Italian Renaissance, Napoleon Bonaparte, and "Moby-Dick."
It's an entertaining and often surprising exploration of lesser-known innovators, past and present.
In his first foray into writing for children, basketball superstar Abdul-Jabbar teams with Obstfeld to
introduce 16 mostly lesser-known African American inventors through a fictional story told by young
twins, who learn that many items in a typical house and used by a majority of Americans were invented or developed by African Americans.