Hubert Invents the Wheel
Claire Montgomery, Monte Montgomery
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Is Hubert on a roll, or is his invention spinning toward disaster?
Hubert loves to think, and not only does that distinguish him from his father, Gorp, and everyone else in ancient Sumeria, but it leads to the greatest invention of all time―the wheel. It takes a while for his neighbors to see the wheel as a major technological advancement rather than a newfangled coffee-table top, but eventually they do, and life is great.
Well, life is great until the Sumerians' archenemies, the Assyrians, find out about the wheel and use it to plan their destruction. Now the question is not whether Hubert's invention is ahead of its time, but whether he should have stuck to designing living room furniture instead of causing civilization's demise.
Hilarious and profound, Hubert's adventure brings the ancient world to life.
of happier times. Gorp had been head over heels in love with his wife. He was amazed at how effortlessly she could create something new out of ordinary, everyday stuff—especially in the kitchen. For example, she was the first person to combine vegetables, meat, spices, and hot water into a tasty concoction she called "soup." This led to another invention, the spoon, which eliminated the slurping sounds Gorp made when he fed straight from the bowl. The fork soon followed, preventing many a
mother. "He spends all his time in the garage, tinkering." "Life used to be a lot simpler," said a wistful man. "It's these crazy kids and their hopped-up carts," said a crusty grandmother. Seated up on the stage next to the Queen, Salvo was getting impatient. He wanted to end the meeting and simply throw Hubert in jail. "That'd fix his wagon," he thought, sadly lacking the sense of humor required to recognize this as a perfectly acceptable, if accidental, joke. But Eridu seemed bent on
and here's the valley—" "Where those nasty Sumerians live." "That's right, toots. Now what we've done is, we've created a little surprise for the nasty Sumerians, which will soon be arriving by special delivery." He looked up from the drawing. "Come on, honey, give me a peek. I can't stand it anymore." He pulled away the second veil, revealing a third. It was a good thing Hubert found that box full of veils in the dressing room. "Why, you little vixen." He reached for the third and
clutching Salvo's arm. "Our course of action is clear," said the Prime Minister. "We defend our city to the last man standing. If that means our streets must run with blood, so be it." "I see," said the Queen. After a moment she added, "Just to play devil's advocate here, Salvo, what if we took a slightly different course of action?" "And what does Your Majesty have in mind?" "Well, I was thinking, it might be a great deal less . . . messy if we were to sort of . . . throw in the
shuffleboard courts; the kids were excited about the new playground and arcade; and the Sumerian Music Appreciation Society had their fingers crossed for a new concert hall. In order to meet all those demands, the Ziggurat would clearly have to be very, very, very, very large. And it was. Near the structure's base was the construction tent, a canvas awning that shielded the foremen, architects, designers, and managers from the scorching desert sun. Plans, drawings, and models were spread