Perkin’s Perfect Purple

Queen Victoria commanded “Make me a purple velvet crown!”

But purple was tricky.

Until a boy named William Perkin did an experiment at home during his spring break.

William wanted to invent a new medicine to cure malaria, but his experiment, using the scientific method, created something else…
the world’s first synthetic dye. PURPLE FOR THE PEOPLE! And a new way to approach chemistry, to identify and cure disease, and to make a better world.

Perkin’s Perfect Purple: How A Boy Created Color With Chemistry will be in bookstores and libraries on October 6, 2020.

Reviews & Accolades

  • KIRKUS Starred Review- Aug. 1, 2020 “The narrative is brisk, alliterative, and full of well-chosen details…The conclusion and extraordinarily rich author’s note and period visuals emphasize the White Englishman’s contributions to the fashion, medical, and scientific communities.Perfect for STEAM-infused reading and for grasping the value of serendipity.”
  • Horn Book- September/October 2020 “Populist message… thorough history…meticulous science process”
  • School Library Journal Sept. 1, 2020 “This pleasant narrative detailing an unexpected discovery could appeal to readers interested in a variety of subjects: history, science, fashion, and uplifting stories of perseverance.”