...charming and accessible...
— The New York Times Book Review

RECENTLY NAMED a Mathical Honor Book!

This fun picture book is a fictionalized story of the real-life mathematician Leonardo of Pisa.

He journeyed to Northern Africa to work in his father’s business more than 800 years ago. He was surprised to learn that the citizens of his new home didn’t use Roman numerals. He traveled the world of the Mediterranean learning all he could about the strange new Hindu-Arabic numerals. Then he wrote books to teach western Europeans how to calculate with them.

The man we now call Fibonacci is largely responsible for converting Europe from I-II-III to 1-2-3. But he’s mostly remembered for a series of numbers known as the Fibonacci Sequence, which describes how many objects thrive and flourish in nature.

BUY Blockhead: The life of Fibonacci

Blockhead The Life of Fibonacci by Joseph D'Agnese illustrated by John O'Brien


...the clearest explanation to date for younger readers
of the numerical sequence that is found throughout nature and still bears his name.
— Booklist

what others are saying

* “The lively text includes touches of humor...” — Kirkus Reviews, starred review

“Math lover or not, readers should succumb to the charms of this highly entertaining biography of medieval mathematician Leonardo Fibonacci.” — Publishers Weekly

“This lighthearted introduction to Fibonacci’s ideas will inspire young math lovers and perhaps point them toward more scholarly explorations.” — School Library Journal

“[An] engaging, kid-friendly look at Fibonacci and his eponymous numerical sequence... The book has some clever tongue-in-cheek humor, and D’Agnese does readers a favor by clearly explaining Fibonacci’s breeding rabbits scenario... Throughout the book, O’Brien’s illustrations are textured with swirls and spirals—a whimsical homage to the man who discovered, as he believed, ‘the numbers Mother Nature uses to order the universe.’” — Horn Book

“Young listeners should get the gist of Fibonacci’s work, and they can test their skills at identifying numbers in the Fibonacci sequence by looking for examples tucked throughout the artwork.”—Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

“Not a blockhead was he, that Fibonacci.” — Rasco from RIF

“I enjoyed this book a lot and I think it has serious kid appeal...an interesting hybrid between picture book biography and fable.” — Sarah C. Campbell, author, Growing Patterns: Fibonacci Patterns in Nature

“The story is written in the first person as if Leonardo is telling us about his life. It’s a very effective way to make the story accessible and interesting.” — Abby the Librarian

“Both text and pictures are lively and provide an entertaining tale of how Fibonaci (may have) discovered the sequence that bears his name.” —  Greg Leitich-Smith

“Read this book, share it with the people you love, and you’ll never look at the world in quite the same way.” — Children's Literature Network



Mathical: Books for Kids From Teens to Tots Honor Book (named in 2015)

Best 2010 Science Books for Kids — Smithsonian Magazine

Best Children’s Books of the Year — Bank Street College

Noteworthy Books for Children and Teens — Capitol Choices

2011 ALSC Notable Nominee

Best Books for 2010 — Children’s Book Compass

2011 Best Books for School Librarians — Nassau, NY, Library System

Narrative Nonfiction for Kids: A librarian’s book list of kid’s favorites — Yahoo