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The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind - William Kamkwamba

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind

By: William Kamkwamba

Paperback | 29 February 2016 | Edition Number 1

At a Glance


RRP $14.99


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William Kamkwamba grew up in a tiny farming village in Malawi, Africa, without electricity. When a drought destroyed the crops and famine resulted, William's family could no longer afford his school tuition. He continued to study on his own, though, painstakingly translating an English science textbook and figuring out how to build a windmill out of old bike parts and other scraps. To the wonder of his community, he brought electricity to his home, and later to his whole village--and thus water as well. Includes an eight-page insert of photographs.

Now a Netflix film starring and directed by Chiwetel Ejiofor, this is a gripping memoir of survival and perseverance about the heroic young inventor who brought electricity to his Malawian village.

When a terrible drought struck William Kamkwamba's tiny village in Malawi, his family lost all of the season's crops, leaving them with nothing to eat and nothing to sell. William began to explore science books in his village library, looking for a solution. There, he came up with the idea that would change his family's life forever- he could build a windmill. Made out of scrap metal and old bicycle parts, William's windmill brought electricity to his home and helped his family pump the water they needed to farm the land.

Retold for a younger audience, this exciting memoir shows how, even in a desperate situation, one boy's brilliant idea can light up the world. Complete with photographs, illustrations, and an epilogue that will bring readers up to date on William's story, this is the perfect edition to read and share with the whole family.
Industry Reviews
"[An] inspiring story of curiosity and ingenuity." -- Publishers Weekly

"This book will appeal to adults eager to impart an uplifting Third World human-interest story, but it is also sure to resonate with children who will simply love the curiosity, resilience and resourcefulness of this doughty African youth." -- Wall Street Journal

"A powerful, gorgeously illustrated children's picture book." -- The Boston Globe

"This is a dynamic portrait of a young person whose connection to the land, concern for his community, and drive to solve problems offer an inspiring model." -- School Library Journal

"Zunon illustrates handsomely, with contrasting cut-paper-collage details and broad, sere landscapes painted in visibly textured oils." -- Kirkus

"This picture book in accessible free verse will draw kids who love to construct their own engineering gadgets." -- Booklist

Cooperative Children's Book Center's 2013 Best-of-the-year list. -- CCBC

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