‘Leonardo the Drone’ children’s book series has an empowering message (and it’s all about drone photography!)

A little kid might be too young to fly even the smallest of drones. But the ‘Leonardo the Drone’ children’s book series is a delightful way to expose young children to the world of drones, photography and STEM through reading. And the book incorporates a neat bit of technology itself.

“The Adventures of Leonardo the Drone” is a series of children’s books that launched this year. The first book in the series, “Photos from the Sky” follows a young girl named Leah as she enters a photography contest. It’s a sweet story that shows a positive use-case for drones, and it’s not one you might immediately think of. This use-case is empowering young people to not give up when things get hard, but instead to think outside of the box and become even better.

Books two and three, “How Drones Work” and “Drones for Good,” are planned for 2020. Those books are intended to be more STEM-focused, and will be written with input from STEM educators.

“The Adventures of Leonardo the Drone” was created by husband-wife duo John Purdy, who authored the book, and Cindy Rodella-Purdy, who illustrated it. John Purdy is also a photographer and web developer, and Cindy Rodella-Purdy, who has a BFA in Fine Arts, has also worked as a designer, programmer, and project manager in digital media. Together, they run digital media company Creative Cat Media.

And they’ve put their tech prowess to use to make “The Adventures of Leonardo the Drone” more than just a children’s book. It’s actually a web-enabled book. That means readers can use a smartphone or tablet to photograph the QR code sprinkled throughout the book. From there, a web browser launches, showing ‘Leonardo’s’ actual drone photos and videos seen in the book. (Most of those actual photos were shot on a DJI Mavic 2 Pro). Even if the reader is too young to fly on drones, even the book itself gets kids interested in technology in clever ways.

The web page also includes other useful information for kids and adult drone pilots alike, including FAA facts on drone safety and regulation, plus drone photography tips.

The book is available now on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, BAM! and IndieBound in hardcopy, paperback, Nook, and Kindle versions. But given Rodella-Purdy’s darling illustrations, I recommend going for the hardcopy, as this is a book you’ll want to keep on your bookshelf to look at again and again.

You can purchase “The Adventures of Leonardo the Drone” now to receive it by Christmas. (It’s on both of our Christmas gift ideas lists, for children and adults!) If purchased via Amazon, it should arrive within two days (nope, no Amazon drone delivery yet).

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