Ignacious “Iggy” Peck builds his first building at age two: a towering skyscraper of glue and diapers (used). And despite his unusual choices of medium, such as food or dirt, his parents encourage his love of building. But when he attends second grade with Miss Greer, he is disheartened to find that the subject of architecture is forbidden in her class (due to Miss Greer’s disastrous childhood experience with skyscrapers). Not able to practice his passion, Iggy loses his thirst for knowledge, becoming listless and disinterested in school. One day, on a class trip across the river, the footbridge that connects them to the mainland collapses, leaving the children and their teacher trapped! But architect Iggy knows just how to save the day, and might just change Miss Greer’s opinion of building in the process.
This is the third book we’ve read from Beaty & Robert’s STEM-inspired series, and it’s just as satisfying as the previous two, but for a surprisingly different reason. While all three books are about scientific wunderkinds pursuing their endeavors despite discouragement and disappointment, Iggy specifically faces an authority figure who dismisses his work based on inherent bias. It’s a surprisingly apt metaphor for some of the problems scientists today can face, and a cautionary tale against dissuading children’s interests based on our own prejudices. It makes Iggy’s message feel like one for adults as much as children, and I liked that. Adding to the excellent story is Robert’s fun and quirky graph-paper illustrations and some spritely rhyming text. The length is fine, and JJ enjoyed it. Perfect for scientists of any age, and it’s Baby Bookworm approved!