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Book review: Rosie Revere, Engineer

Written By | Oct 19, 2013

Silver Spring, Md, October 19, 2013 – Rosie Revere wanted to be an engineer. She collected trash and unwanted items to make her creations. She was quiet and shy, so she built machines in the attic and hid them under her bed. One day she made a snake repelling hat for her uncle who was a zookeeper. When he saw the hat he laughed so hard it hurt Rosie’s feelings and made her hide away her creations and keep her dreams to herself.

Then one day her great-great aunt Rose can to visit. She told Rosie how she had built airplanes long ago, but that she had dreamed of flying and never had. Rosie was inspired by her aunt Rose and set out to make a new creation that would allow her aunt to fulfill her dream of flight.

Rosie worked and worked until she had finally finished her cheese-copter, and then hauled it out to the lawn to test it.  It flew for a moment then crashed to the ground, and Rosie was left on the ground before her aunt, who was laughing. Rosie felt embarrassed and hurt, until Aunt Rose explained that the machine was a great success because it was a failure because Rosie could learn from and improve her design.  Newly inspired, Rosie pursued her dreams, knowing that the only great failure was quitting.

Photo by Robynlou Kavanagh.


This is a great book for young girls. In a time when there are not enough women in science and engineering, this book encourages girls to be inventive and pursue their dreams even if they get discouraged. While the protagonist of Rosie is a creative little girl and inspiring to young girls, Aunt Rose is supposed to be an older version of the classic WWII poster girl, Rosie the Riveter, whose grit and determination still has relevance today.

Finally, the moral of this story applies to whatever we do in life, whether it is building machines, playing sports or designing clothes: “Life might have its failures, but this was not it. The only true failure can come if you quit.”

Author Andrea Beaty is the author of 11 children’s books including Rosie Revere, Engineer. Beaty’s work has received many honors, including the Parents Choice Silver Award, the Illinois Reads Award, and a Gold Medal from the National Assoication of Parenting Publications. She has had books nominated for the E.B. White Read Aloud Award and Florida Sunshine State Young Readers Award.

Photo by J. Aaron Farr. Click to enlarge.


Illustrator David Roberts provides whimsical illustrations which fully bring to life Rosie and the other characters, including the crazy, wacky machines that Rosie invents. This is the 11th children’s book he has brought to life with his artwork. His work has been shortlisted for the Mother Goose Award and the Kate Greenaway Award.

Published September 3, 2013 by Abrams, Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty and David Roberts is available as a hardcover or an ebook.

Brighid Moret

Brighid is a freelance writer, mother and reader. She holds an MA in Writing from Johns Hopkins University. Find her on Twitter @BrighidMoret, or follow @BigReadsLittleH for the latest children's book reviews.