Pop!: The Invention of Bubble Gum

Category: Book
By (author): McCarthy, Meghan
Subject:  JUVENILE NONFICTION / Cooking & Food
  JUVENILE NONFICTION / History / General
  JUVENILE NONFICTION / History / United States / 20th Century
  JUVENILE NONFICTION / Science & Nature / General (see also headings under Animals
  JUVENILE NONFICTION / Technology / How Things Work-Are Made
Publisher: Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books
Published: May 2010
Format: Book-hardcover
Pages: 40
Size: 10.00in x 9.00in x 0.30in
List Price:
$ 25.99
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$ 19.99
(23% Off)
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Additional Notes

From The Publisher*Gum. It's been around for centuries-from the ancient Greeks to the American Indians, everyone's chewed it. But the best kind of gum-bubble gum!-wasn't invented until 1928, when an enterprising young accountant at Fleer Gum and Candy used his spare time to experiment with different recipes. Bubble-blowing kids everywhere will be delighted with Megan McCarthy's entertaining pictures and engaging fun facts as they learn the history behind the pink perfection of Dubble Bubble.
Review Quote*"A sweetly told, worthy tale-the world needs more heroes like Walter." - KIRKUS
Review Quote*HORN BOOK Pop!: The Invention of Bubble Gum by Meghan McCarthy; illus. by the author Primary Wiseman/Simon 40 pp. 5/10 978-1-4169-7970-8 $15.99 Although chewing gum dates back over nine thousand years, it wasn't until 1928 that mild-mannered accountant by day and inventor by night Walter Diemer introduced bubble gum to the American public. And the rest is history, with over forty million pieces of bubble gum now sold daily. McCarthy's light-as-air biography covers a popular topic and a likable ("I've done something with my life...I've made kids happy around the world") hero whose success comes through hard work, perseverance, and ingenuity. McCarthy's signature round-faced characters, with spherical insectlike eyes, suggest a number of gumballs playfully rolling across each page. Initial dark backgrounds reflect the dismal state of the pre-bubble-gum factory, while bright colors signal the perfected product as business booms. An author's note about the inventor extends the slight text; interesting facts about chewing gum continue the good-humored theme; a bibliography completes the back matter. BETTY CARTER
Review Quote*"What a good idea for a book! Kids who enjoy blowing gum bubbles may never have considered how the treat came to be, but here, in easy language and with amusing illustrations, McCarthy changes that." --BOOKLIST
Review Quote*This picture-book biography of the inventor of bubblegum is equal parts informative and entertaining. With appropriately simple but engaging prose, McCarthy relates how accountant Walter Diemer began "playing with different mixtures" in the late 1920s at the candy factory where he worked and eventually discovered a gum that bubbled. Judicious use of the inventor's own words helps to convey his enthusiastic personality. Along with Diemer's story, the author also covers a bit of gum history, the trial-and-error of invention, and the excitement that comes with a successful final product, all with just the right level of detail. Appealing acrylic cartoon illustrations fill this snippet of history with a sense of fun. The prominent curves of smiling faces and circular eyes and heads stand out against heavy lines and angles to fill each scene with playfulness that matches the subject. Rich colors capture the lighthearted joy of bubble blowers, both old and young, while contrasting darker tones reflect the drama of the inventor's lab work. A closing spread offers further information about Diemer's life, more fun facts about gum, and a full list of sources. Although the man will be unfamiliar to young readers, they know his invention well, and will appreciate his unexpected but well-earned success. McCarthy's on-target presentation makes this a strong choice for elementary biography assignments, booktalking, or just plain nonfiction fun. -- SLJ, May 2010, *STAR
Review Quote*Walter Diemer, an accountant with the Fleer chewing gum company, slowly begins experimenting with ingredients, trying to create bubblegum. One batch is a near miss-his co-workers happily blow bubbles, but "the next day the mixture was as hard as a rock." But with time, "top secret ingredients," and the now classic pink coloring, he finally nails it: at a mom-and-pop store, kids blow bubbles for the first time. McCarthy's thickly painted acrylic cartoons create an expressive 1920s backdrop with bug-eyed characters dressed in the era's fashions. A closing section supplies numerous facts about gum. Unlike its subject matter, this history lesson is easily digestible. - PUBLISHERS WEEKLY, May 3, 2010
Review Quote*"Picture books make the perfect introduction to some subjects. "Pop!" will tell young readers all they need to know about the reinvention of one of history's most popular treats, and the witty drawings tell the rest." --New York Times, August 15th 2010.
Biographical NoteMeghan McCarthyis a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design. She is the award-winning author and illustrator of many books for children, includingAliens Are Coming!: The True Account of the 1938 War of the Worlds Radio Broadcast, which was named a School Library Journal Best Book of the Year, a Kirkus Reviews Best Book of the Year, and an ALA Notable Book;Strong Man: The Story of Charles Atlas, a Booklist Best Book; andCity Hawk: The Story of Pale Male. Ms. McCarthy lives in New York City, where she works as a bookseller. Visit her online at www.meghan-mccarthy.com.