Friday, February 10, 2017

Margo's Musing: Hop on the Ferris Wheel!


Margo’s pick from the library this week was a surprise! She insisted on getting Mr. Ferris and His Wheel by Kathryn Gibbs Davis. She does love purple and blue, so those colors on the cover may have pulled her in. Margo has been walking around the house exclaiming “wheel” ever since we finished reading it. I think she wants a ride! Too bad it’s snowing outside. 


This is the inspiring picture book biography of George Ferris and how he came to build a structure that defied gravity and became a staple at fairs, carnivals, and amusement parks. How many of us have ridden a Ferris Wheel at some point in our lives? I have to say I was intrigued by her pick and curious to learn how the first one came to be. The World’s Fair was coming to Chicago in 1893, so the search was on for the design that would top the Eiffel Tower, the standout of the last fair. None of the ideas were new and exciting enough for the committee. When George Ferris, an engineer, brought his proposal to the board they weren’t sure because they thought it was too big and that it wouldn’t work. The fair was only a handful of months away when the committee decided to give the go ahead to Ferris. There was intense pressure for everyone working on the project and they also had to deal with frozen ground and Chicago weather. 

The story really makes you feel the anticipation when Ferris and his wife take the first ride. I would have been so scared! I loved learning about how the invention came together was surprised to hear about the large glass cars. Once the fair was over it was even taken down and put up at other locations! Wow!  I was amazed at how fun it was to learn about history from this delightful picture book. Margo loved the illustrations and pointed to pictures as we read. After we finished I had to look up what the cars looked like, since I couldn’t imagine how big they were. I was stunned!

Mr. Ferris and His Wheel is a great book for people who like to learn about history in an interesting way or for people who like a good ride. I bet you will learn something new too!

Happy reading! ~ F


38 comments:

  1. I love the historical aspect and the real pic of the first one in Chicago. I'd say the colorful cover would pull anyone in!

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    1. Lexa- So glad you enjoyed the picture of the first Ferris wheel. So interesting. I can't imagine riding in one of those cars. :) ~F

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  2. Sounds like a good book. We have a huge Ferris wheel here every year from November to January, and every year I stand there and want to go for a ride, and still haven't done it! One of these days....Have a great weekend, hugs, Valerie

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    1. Valerie- I can understand the fear of riding a giant Ferris wheel. The view is amazing- but moving at the top can give us a bit of a fright. :) ~F

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  3. Learning and a fun one, sure a great mix to give a run

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  4. it's all about wheels this week!

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  5. Sounds cute, and I too wouldn't have wanted to be the first one to ride on one :)

    betty

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    1. Betty- I can't even begin to imagine how scary it would have been to ride the new invention first. Yikes. :) ~F

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  6. How cool! I haven't heard much of anything about the history of a Ferris wheel, but I do love to ride on them :)

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    1. Meradeth- It was interesting to learn how the first one was created. I had never really thought about it before this book. :) ~F

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  7. I like that the book also teaches but hehe...I'm terrified just to think about ride on the wheel:D Im my imagination's eyes I see it as a beautiful experience but then there's my vertigo:))

    Kisses!:))

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    1. ToTylkoJa- Vertigo would definitely make Ferris wheels no fun! I can see why you are terrified. I like that the book taught me something too. :) ~F

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  8. I would love this. I don't know anything about the history of the Ferris Wheel, and the pictures. Wow.

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    1. Heidi- Aren't the pictures fabulous! I think this would be a hit with you and your kids. :) ~F

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  9. This book goes perfectly with your wonderful riddle this week! I think it would be fascinating to learn about the history of the Ferris wheel! But I'm sorry to say I would have sent Mr. Ferris on that first ride alone! LOL! Thank you for the great review and for adding this book to our TBR. Have a wonderful weekend :)

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    1. A Belle's Tales- It is definitely a fascinating book and I am glad to have introduced you to it! I don't think I would have been able to get on that first car back in the 1800s! To be the first- yikes. :) ~F

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  10. Love the colors of the illustrations and the color. So nice to have the historical photo too. I so miss picture book read together's.

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    1. Brenda- Aren't the colors beautiful! Picture books are a lot of fun to read. :) ~F

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  11. How fascinating. I'd never heard the story before. And chicken me was not crazy about riding in a Ferris Wheel. This looks like a lovely book.

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    1. Beverly- I can understand being afraid to ride a Ferris Wheel. Definitely not for those afraid of heights. This is a great book. :) ~F

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  12. What a wonderful piece of history.

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    1. Sandra- Definitely! I learned a lot. :) ~F

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  13. Catchy cover. What a great subject for a picture book. Who isn't fascinated by ferris wheels?

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    1. Theresa- I love books like this one because they make me realize how many things there are out there that I don't know anything about. Learning history through books is so much fun. :) ~F

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  14. Oh that is so neat! I read a historical fiction by Gist a couple years ago that was set at the Chicago World's Fair and the wheel was mentioned.

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    1. Anna- I love learning about history through books. So many fascinating facts. Hard to imagine attending a World Fair back in the day. I would be amazed to see one now, let alone back in the 1800s. :) ~F

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  15. Oh wow, just look at the painting. That skyline. That spread of colours. I love it. Will search for this PB. Thanks so much for letting us know about this book! (I haven't ridden on a Ferris Wheel. Just never felt like hopping on one!)

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    1. Claudine- Isn't the artwork just beautiful! The history and illustrations are perfect together. Hope you enjoy it! :) ~F

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  16. Great cover and interesting premise for the story.

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  17. Sounds like a very good book!!! I think it would be very interesting to learn about the history!

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    1. Magic Love Crow- I really enjoyed learning about something I hadn't ever thought about before. :) ~F

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  18. I never really thought about the origins of the Ferris Wheel and that it may even be named after the person who created them! Even from reading your review, I've learned so much already. And the colours of those images are beautiful.

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    1. Olivia-Savannah- I learned a lot too and I am glad that I was able to share some of it with you. :) The colors really add to the book. :) ~F

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