When he was born, Albert was a peculiar, fat baby with an unusually big and misshaped head. When he was older, he hit his sister, bothered his teachers, and didn’t have many friends. But in the midst of all of this, Albert was fascinated with solving puzzles and fixing scientific problems. The ideas Albert Einstein came up with during his childhood as an odd boy out were destined to change the way we know and understand the world around us . . .
Don Brown tells the story of Einstein's transition from "odd boy" to genius. Instead of concentrating on how brilliant Einstein was, Brown highlights some of Einstein's struggles and faults. As depicted in this book, young Einstein has a quick temper and does not always pay attention in school. Unpopular with his classmates, he spends most of his time alone. Many things that the typical boys like (for example, soldiers) frighten Einstein. His teachers misunderstand him and get frustrated with him. Readers will find Don Brown's simplistic language and engaging ideas accessible. In addition, his illustrations, presented from the viewpoint of a child, convey a great deal about the young Einstein. Many of the illustrations show the ideas in his head, allowing readers to see the enormity of his thoughts and how they can completely occupy a young mind. The creative use of foreground and background allows the reader to feel Einstein's isolation from the group in some illustrations, while the perspective of the images emphasizes the adults' larger size as they tower over the children. Brown succeeds in presenting a child's-eye view of a young Einstein's experiences in his illustrations and simplistic but interesting text. Reviewer: Briana Devaser