The Day-Glo Brothers: The True Story of Bob and Joe Switzer's Bright Ideas and Brand-New Colors Reviews

UPDATE TIME: 2018-10-17 
Review Score: 5 out of 5 star From 20 user ratings

"The Day-Glo Brothers by Chris Barton. Watertown, MA: Charlesbridge (2009). 44 p, ISBN: 9781570916731.

Brothers Bob and Joe Switzer invented Day-Glo colors. Bob was practical and wanted to help people as a doctor. Joe was inventive and wanted to dazzle people as a magician. Bob was injured and required recovery in a darkened room, which is how the pair first became interested in ultraviolet technology. They had a small lab in their basement, and discovered fluorescent paint, ink, and fabric, used on posters, billboards, and costumes. Their colors were used during WWII for signaling and safety (helping people), and later expanded to countless other objects like highlighters, hula hoops, and paintings (dazzling people).

The story itself is not different from countless other inventions that require a spark of an idea, a lot of work, and a little luck. However, the illustrations are what make this book remarkable. The story uses Day-Glo colors extremely effectively, starting with grayscale drawings and then adding in touches of color to highlight the important discoveries the brothers made along the way. The colors also get brighter as the book progresses, mimicking the brothers’ continued discovery and refinement. The illustrations themselves have a retro feel to them, and as Publisher’s Weekly points out, “[they] bring to mind the goofy enthusiasm of vintage educational animation.” The author includes a couple of notes explaining the basics of fluorescence and background information on compiling the Switzers’ story for further reading. Though younger children will enjoy the pictures and color, 8-10 year-olds should also appreciate the scientific aspects.
" said.

" Genre: Biographical NonfictionReading Level: Primary (2-3)I loved this book! This was not only informational but it also had a good moral to the story. It was so cool how they set up both of the brothers' relationship. This book reminded me of how how when things do not work out like we plan there is usually a better plan. " said.

" Learn how the bright florescent colors you're used to seeing were created. The bright orange, yellow, and green have an interesting story of how they came to be. " said.

" Learn how the bright florescent colors you're used to seeing were created. The bright orange, yellow, and green have an interesting story of how they came to be. " said.

" Definitely one for my classroom! The colors pop and the story is actually interesting " said.

" Staff PickHeatherUntil I found this book, I never gave any thought to how "Day-Glo" colors came to be. The story of the Switzer brothers and their glowing invention is truly remarkable. " said.

" Two brothers who made fluorescent paint and then accidentally discovered day-glo colors. " said.

" Read this with my first grader. She was fascinated by the concept that someone had created new colors. I enjoyed the fact that the book showed the trial and error that went into the Brothers scientific process. A good read for kids interested in science and art. " said.

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