Solving the Puzzle Under the Sea

Marie Tharp Maps
the Ocean Floor

A Paula Wiseman Book
(Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers)
(published 1.15.2016) 40 pages 

A True Tale
with A Cherry On Top 

A uthor: Robert Burleigh
      and Illustrator: Raul Colon

C haracter: Marie Tharp

 verview from the jacket flap: 

    "Marie Tharp always loved maps. Traveling with her father to make surveys, she felt like maps talked to her. Then in college, a teacher pointed out that though the oceans cover more than half the earth's surface, scientists knew very little about the bottom of the seas. She wondered, how deep are the oceans? Is the seafloor flat or are there mountains on the ocean floor?
     In the 1940s Marie entered a world where it was not easy to be a woman and a scientist. And having a woman on a ship was thought to be bad luck. Still she persevered. Today Marie Tharp is considered one of the twentieth century's most important scientists, though she is little known.
     Award-winning author Robert Burleigh tells the story of Marie Tharp's imagination and determination. Luminously illustrated by Raul Colon, Solving the Puzzle Under the Sea is a book that will inspire readers to follow their dreams."
T antalizing taste: 
    "People had long attempted to measure the depth of the oceans. Sailors once lowered weighted ropes to make such measurements. More recently, scientists had begun using machines that sent sound waves from a ship to the seafloor and back again ... These measurements are called 'soundings'...
     You have to think big, I told myself. I hauled a large table into my workroom and covered it with a huge sheet of paper. To me it was a blank canvas filled with possibilities. I couldn't wait to get started.
     ...It was like piecing together an immense jigsaw puzzle. I felt like a detective solving a great mystery.
     I was a scientist at last ...
     I was a kind of artist, too... I couldn't see it with my eyes, yet a 'portrait' of the ocean floor was coming into view."

and something more: The back matter of Solving the Puzzle Under the Sea explains that Marie Tharp "was a key figure in helping to map and understand the seafloors around the world. Her work was also valuable in proving the theory of continental drift: that all the continents on earth move very slowly, toward or away from one another, over time... It took years for Marie's work and achievement to receive full recognition... Marie Tharp died in 2006. Among the many tributes that she received, one scientist put it very simply, 'Marie didn't just make maps. She understood how the Earth works.'"


Jane @ Raincity Librarian said...

Such an inspiring story about a pioneering, trailblazing woman. Beautiful.

Cheriee Weichel said...

I loved this book! She was an amazing woman who had to work hard to accomplish so much.

Tara Smith said...

This sounds absolutely wonderful, a book very much like the one I shared today.

Jeanne Walker Harvey said...

Hi Tara,

Yes, it's a wonderful book and amazing story! I'm off to find out what book you shared today that you think is similar.

Thanks for stopping by!

Jeanne Walker Harvey said...

Hi Cheriee,

I really appreciate you stopping by again!

Yes, I'm so glad I featured this book -- so much in it to share with children AND adults.

Jeanne Walker Harvey said...

Yes indeed, she was a trailblazer, as were so many in the story of the suffragettes.

Thanks for stopping by!

Myra Garces Bacsal said...

This is in my to-order list. Thanks for sharing your thoughts about this pbb. :)