Tuesday, October 4, 2016

America the Ingenious by Kevin Baker

book cover
America the Ingenious:
76 World-Changing Inventions and the Visionaries Who Made Them Happen
by Kevin Baker

ISBN-13: 9781579656942
Hardcover: 276 pages
Publisher: Artisan Books
Released: Oct. 4, 2016

Source: ebook review copy from the publisher through NetGalley.

Book Description, Modified from NetGalley:
Here are 76 of the most intriguing, important, and ingenious inventions realized in America, from the Panama Canal, the Hoover Dam, the Golden Gate Bridge, and Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater to the oil rig, the electric sewing machine, and the telephone. Who came up with these ideas? How long did they take to realize? What were the complications? This book will satisfy the curiosity of history and miscellany buffs alike.

My Review:
America the Ingenious explores 76 important or interesting American inventions. From covered wagons (prairie schooner) to cars (Lincoln zephyr), planes (transcontinental plane), trains (NY subway, transcontinental railroad, etc.), ships (yankee clippers, container ship), and spaceships (Apollo 11). From canals (Erie Canal, Panama Canal) to tunnels (Hudson and East River tunnels). From the rotary printing press to transatlantic cable, microprocessor to 3D printing, sewing machines to athletic shoes, and more.

Each invention had about 3 pages of text plus an illustration or two. The author talked about why the invention was built and the people and efforts involved. He provided interesting details about the challenges faced during the building of the project or by those using the product. He usually discussed how it worked only in general terms. Overall, I'd recommend this book.

If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.

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