Lonnie Johnson's Super-Soaking Stream of Inventions

By Chris Barton and illustrated by Don Tate


WhooshA cool idea with a big splash

You know the Super Soaker. It's one of top twenty toys of all time. And it was invented entirely by accident. Trying to create a new cooling system for refrigerators and air conditioners, impressive inventor Lonnie Johnson instead created the mechanics for the iconic toy.

A love for rockets, robots, inventions, and a mind for creativity began early in Lonnie Johnson's life. Growing up in a house full of brothers and sisters, persistence and a passion for problem solving became the cornerstone for a career as an engineer and his work with NASA. But it is his invention of the Super Soaker water gun that has made his most memorable splash with kids and adults.


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What people are saying:

"Very interesting biography that will be a hit with STEM teachers. Well-written and illustrated. it made me want a longer biography on Lonnie Johnson."
- KT Horning, Librarian at the Cooperative Children's Book Center

"It's something new, the illustrations are awesome, it's interesting, and it's narrative non-fiction. Perfect..."
- Karen Covington, Librarian at Batesville Junior High

"Lonnie Johnson's story is an inspiring one."
- Myra Zarnowski, Queens College

"I liked this one especially because it was someone I'd never heard of, but once I read it, I was surprised I'd never heard of him!"
- Debbie Turner, The Book Search

"...bright and cheerful."
- Laura Hargrove, Librarian at Plano Public Library


Chris Barton is the author of several award-winning, best-selling books for young readers, including The Day-Glo Brothers: The True Story of Bob and Joe Switzer's Bright Ideas and Brand-New Colors, Shark vs Train, The Amazing Age of John Roy Lynch, and more.

Visit Chris online to learn more.

Keep up with Chris on Twitter and Facebook.

Don Tate has illustrated several books for young readers, including Duke Ellington's Nutcracker Suite, The Cart That Carried Martin, and The Amazing Age of John Roy Lynch. He is also the author of It Jes' Happened: When Bill Traylor Started to Draw, for which he received the Ezra Jack Keats New Writer Honor, and Poet: The Remarkable Story of George Moses Horton, for which Don was named the winner of the Ezra Jack Keats New Writer Award.

Visit Don online to learn more.

Keep up with Don on Twitter and Facebook.