Scottish Inventors
Gary Smailes

Scottish Inventors

The Famous Scots series has been designed to plug a hole in the market left by the current range of 9-12 year old Scottish themed history books. Famous Scots offers a fresh approach to history focussing on the achievements and actions of historical figures. The aim of the series is to bring history to life, inspiring young readers to develop a sense of national identity, whilst engaging with past historical figures and events. Famous Scots do not follow the traditional narrative history book format but instead use the anecdotal model pioneered by Terry Deary of Horrible Histories fame. One unique aspect of Famous Scots is a play on the title, using the tag line Famous (and not so famous!) Scots to focus on the more obscure, and often more interesting, historical figures.


The story of the famous (and not so famous!) men and woman who put Scotland on the map.

Famous Scots: Inventors, is packed full of fascinating facts about Scottish inventors and their often bizarre inventions.

  • Discover what happened to the steam powered gun.
  • Find out why your post is not delivered by hot air balloon.
  • Unravel the mystery of who really invented the telephone.
  • Learn how one man’s finger put thousands of criminals behind bars.
  • Faint at the fact that an Englishman invented the kilt.


The story of the famous (and not so famous!) men and woman who put Scotland on the map.

Famous Scots: Warriors, is packed full of fascinating facts about Scottish warriors and their vicious victories.

  • Discover how King James III was killed by the fastest horse in Scotland.
  • Learn why one Scottish warrior felt the need to invade Canada.
  • Meet the insane Scottish chieftain who thought he could defeat the Romans.
  • Find out which Scottish sailor fought for four countries.
  • Discover which Scottish soldiers wear no underwear under their kilts.

Book Details:

  • Author: Gary Smailes
  • On Submission
  • Rights Sold
    • UK: Birlinn
Gary Smailes

Gary Smailes

Gary Smailes started his working career as a biologist, but gave up a promising career as a researcher in the pharmaceutical industry to follow his passion for history. After obtaining an MA in Military History from Liverpool University, Gary spent a number of years as a historical researcher for the Horrible Histories writer Terry Deary and as a freelance researcher and editor, before setting up BubbleCow, a literary consultancy that provides editorial services to writers.Gary now splits his time between writing and advising new authors on the best route to publication He works from his...
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