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Hedy Lamarr's Double Life: Hollywood Legend and Brilliant Inventor

4.29  ·  Rating details ·  222 ratings  ·  67 reviews
Movie star by day, ace inventor at night: learn about the hidden life of actress Hedy Lamarr!
To her adoring public, Hedy Lamarr was a glamorous movie star, widely considered the most beautiful woman in the world. But in private, she was something more: a brilliant inventor. And for many years only her closest friends knew her secret. The story of how, during World War
Hardcover, 48 pages
Published February 5th 2019 by Sterling Children's Books
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Average rating 4.29  · 
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Christina Carter
Aug 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
Hedy Lamarr (born Hedwig Eva Maria Kiesler, 1914 - Vienna, Australia) was best known as an international movie star - with a filmography that spans three decades. She "led a double life. The public knew her as a glamorous movie star, famous throughout the world. But in private Hedy was a brilliant inventor, a fact known only to her closest friends" (from the opening pages of Hedy Lamarr's Double Life: Hollywood Legend and Brilliant Inventor).

As a child, she put her creativity to use
Mar 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
Simple and informative and adorable.
Jon(athan) Nakapalau
Wow - I can only wonder what she could have come up with if she had been supported by the powers that be - a true STEM role model for young girls everywhere!
Jun 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I find picture book biographies to be a great way to learn a bit of information and to encourage me to learn more. I will guess this book will be loved for it's amazing dichotomy of a scientist and inventor who was better known as a Hollywood actress. I love to see more books about famous women who defied the odds and did what their hearts desired. They are our heroines, our leaders, and our philosophers, as well. Hedy's life should be better know for both her successful life roles. I am glad sh ...more
Alex  Baugh
When my sister and I were kids, there was nothing we liked better than to watch an old black and white movie on a rainy, snowy, and/or cold Sunday afternoon. And among the films we watched were more than a few starring Hedy Lamarr. She was a wonderful actor. We never would have guessed that she had led a double life as an inventor and that one of her inventions would impact our lives years later.

In her picture book biography for older readers, Laurie Wallmark looks at both sides of L
Barbara Band
Aug 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: 8 - 12; MG
Hedy Lamarr was a beautiful and glamorous movie star yet this biography shows another side to her. She was also a brilliant inventor, a fact known only to a few of her closest friends. She actually had no interest in the Hollywood lifestyle as her passion was science and engineering, something that was encouraged by her father. Her greatest invention was the technology known as frequency-hopping spread spectrum which helps to keep mobile calls and texts private, although at the time she invented ...more
Becky B
A picture book biography of actress and inventor Hedy Lamarr.

Ok, I now want to hunt down an adult biography of Hedy Lamarr. I had heard that she was an inventor before reading this, but didn't know many details. My interest is thoroughly piqued now and I want more information about her life! This does share how Hedy got into acting, her most famous roles, and her charity work, but it primarily focuses on the invention she developed with a friend that we use every day for internet and
Jan 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
An engaging and entertaining tale of the brains behind a Hollywood legend. I love how playing the piano inspired Hedy to invent a secure torpedo guidance system. This book gives clear and easily understood descriptions of frequency hopping and how her pioneering work helps us keep cell phone calls and texts private. My favorite quote: "Do good anyway...think big anyway."An inspiring message from an inspiring woman.
Gina Perry
Jan 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What a fascinating story about a Hollywood legend AND inventor. Before reading this, I hadn't known anything about Hedy Lamarr's life as an inventor and the specific invention shared in this story. Kids and teachers alike will love the layers of information in this book, beautifully married together by the illustrator, writer, and designer. Certainly a great STEM book, but also so appealing for young students interested in biographies.
Diana Murray
Jan 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing
An exceptionally thorough and well-explained account of a fascinating historical figure. It's about time she gets credit for her amazing contributions! This book has loads of classroom applications and would definitely stir up a desire to be inventive. And I loved the illustrations.
Mar 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2020-mock-sibert
It was so interesting to learn about this name I only associated with glamour and movies. Wow, she really had a passion for inventing. I only wish there were some photographs of Hedy Lamarr in the back matter. I found myself hoping to get to them at the end.
Feb 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Great book! Loved how the author showed the complete life of this talented woman. Also loved the fact that I could causally mention her story to my sci-fi loving brother and he knew all about Hedy’s contribution.
This is a great time for non-fiction picture books. I so enjoyed learning about this amazing woman by reading this book. And I'm a grownup!
Kirsti Call
Nov 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Engaging and informative!
Mar 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: iris
IRIS March 7
Jun 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
Movie actress by day, inventor by night! Hedy Lamar's fascinating and inspiring story is told wonderfully in this accessible picture book biography. The explanations of her fascinating inventions is clear and understandable for a young audience.

I loved the retro-style illustrations too. A Time Line, list of films, bibliography and a list of other reading about women in STEM is included.

In Lamar's own words, "It's about time."
Baby Bookworm
Mar 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: our-reviews

This review was originally written for The Baby Bookworm. Visit us for new picture books reviews daily!

Hello, friends! Our book today is Hedy Lamarr’s Double Life: Hollywood Legend and Brilliant Inventor, written by Laurie Wallmark and illustrated by Katy Wu, a look at the talented and brilliant icon.

While most of the world may know Hedy Lamarr as a beauty and Hollywood starlet, many never knew that she was a brilliant and prolific inventor. She never sold any of her inventions, finding satisfaction in solving problems and improving p
Tonja Drecker
Feb 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Hollywood glamour meets scientific brains in a way to inspire kids that even more interesting dreams can come true.

Hedy Lamarr was a famous actress, known for her films with the biggest stars, but she had a lesser known side to her life too. Hedy was a curious person with an inventive touch. Noticing things which could be improved around her, she created various inventions in her free time. Most were never patented. But one invention of hers was quite ingenious and is now used in dai
“All creative people want to do the unexpected.”

The true story of Hedwig Eva Maria Kiesler, who became Hedy Lamarr. Best known for acting in movies, she was also an inventor who created a technology called “Frequency Hopping.” It is still used today to keep signals from being intercepted in cell phones and other wireless communication.

Includes quotes by Lamarr interspersed throughout the text and a selected bibliography about Hedy and other women involved in STEM. A page in the back
Fascinating subject, fun and engaging illustrations. but I felt like the randomly scattered quotes distracted from the flow of the writing.
3 for the words/5 for the pictures = 4 stars.
Wendy Garland
May 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is an intriguing read about the fascinating life of Hedy Lamarr, Hollywood legend and brilliant inventor.
Chana Stiefel
Jan 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
In Laurie Wallmark’s newest picture book, readers are introduced to the surprising and fascinating double life of Hollywood legend Hedy Lamarr. Not only did Lamarr star in 35 films, but she was also a brilliant inventor who designed a secret communications system known as frequency hopping (among many other more fun inventions including a glow-in-the-dark dog collar and fizzy flavor drink cubes!). The illustrations by Katy Wu blend perfectly with Wallmark’s spot-on storytelling and gift for expl ...more
Gabrielle Stoller
Mar 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Not going to lie, but I did not really know the backstory of Hedy Lamarr. Granted, I watched her in several Hollywood films. BUT I did not know that she was an inventor. Wow. There is so much more to her story than being an actress and having six marriages.

This picture book talks about her "frequency hopping" invention that she worked on in the 1940's. Her hope was that it would block transmissions so the Nazis would not intercept American tordepos. However, this technology was not e
Hedy Lamarr- classic, stunning actress, with a sharp, inventive mind. Hedy Lamarr patented using different frequencies to communicate secretly during WWII, and her technology is still used in wifi today. During her young life, she was mostly acknowledged for her work as a Hollywood actress. It wasn't until 1996 that she was recognized for her innovation..."It's about time." she said.
Feb 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Sterling Children's Books is doing a fabulous job of acquiring titles about women in STEM and Hedy Lamarr's Double Life is yet another great addition (the same author has written about Admiral Grace Hopper). The story of Hedy's interest in science and invention plus her love of acting describes how both of those interests grew from her childhood on and how she and another scientist came up with frequency hopping, which is used today as a security feature in modern electronics. While I would have lik ...more
Mar 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
There are those who embrace the occupation or calling for which they are best known every single day. There are others who do what they love outside of the public eye. Many pursue daily work in order to afford to follow their true passion. The secret is to not give up your dream. You are destined to make a difference.

Today is International Women's Day 2019. The theme this year is #BalanceforBetter. It's time for a more gender-balanced world with, for one, notice given to the achievem
Lilith Day
Feb 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
Most people knew Hedy Lamar as an actress. However, she was more than just a pretty face. Behind closed doors she was an inventor and engineer. The loved creating new things so much, she invented technology that we use on a daily basis.

This book was not only a fun biography, but it spoke to many groups of people.

This was a lesson on female empowerment as well as a book with a strong female role. Hedy was an inspiration as well. When the whole world thought one thing, she perused a whole side o
Jenna Grodzicki
Feb 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Hedy Lamarr was known throughout the world as a famous actress. What most people didn't realize, however, was that she was also a brilliant inventor. Her invention, frequency hopping, which she developed with George Antheil, is used today in cell phones and other electronics. Laurie Wallmark's engaging text grabs readers right from the beginning and explains the intricacies of Hedy's invention in a way young readers can understand. Hedy was a woman who didn't have to choose between her two passi ...more
Heather O'Neill
Apr 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: boys
This is a children's book about the actress and inventor Hedy Lemarr. Hedy was always a curious girl and always wondered how things worked. She later became an actress and moved to Los Angeles. When she wasn't acting she was working on her inventions. One of the inventions that she came up with, with the help of her colleague, was Spread Spectrum Technology that was supposed to help the US win the war in WWII. The story is very interesting and one that I did not know. This is a good book for you ...more
Katey Howes
Jan 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
Hedy Lamarr is remembered for her starring roles and stunning looks - but behind that pretty face was an incredible mind. This latest picture book biography by talented author Laurie Wallmark helps readers understand Hedy's curiosity, passion, and penchant for understanding how things work - and creating ways to make them better. Katy Wu's bright illustrations are a great compliment to the straight-forward text, and quotes from Lamarr are sprinkled throughout. Illustrations and explanations work ...more
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Award-winning author Laurie Wallmark’s debut picture book, ADA BYRON LOVELACE AND THE THINKING MACHINE (Creston Books, 2015), received four starred trade reviews (Kirkus, Publishers Weekly, Booklist, and School Library Journal) and many national awards including Outstanding Science Trade Book and Cook Prize Honor Book. Her picture book biography, GRACE HOPPER: QUEEN OF COMPUTER CODE (Sterling Chil ...more