Discover foul facts about the groovy Greeks, including who had the world's first flushing toilet and why dedicated doctors tasted their patients' earwax!
If, like me, you only went to school to gossip and eat your play lunch this book is fantastic. Although I took Classical Studies in the 7th form I honestly thought a lot of it was made up and actually spent more time in the 7th form study room than in class - if only I had known the truth I would have paid more attention while in class. Actually if only I was given this book to study I would have nailed the exam.
My husband and I like watching movies like Gladiator and 300 and whereas he is a period history buff I have very little knowledge of what happened. I really enjoyed the book and it is told in a very funny way and gets straight to the point that I enjoyed learning about those Groovy Greeks.
To begin with it starts with a TimeLine and breaks down all the major events that occurred, like Aristotle invented the camera in 330 or Alexander the Great died in 323. Then there is small little chapters on major categories like Think Like a Greek or The Savage Spartans. There is also comic like pictures throughout the book explaining the conversations that occurred between the major players and how the event could possibly have occurred. Although not the best pictures in the world they do the trick.
One of the best aspects of the book is the exams. Where as I was reading up and finding out a lot of the trivia my husband was still eager to participate in any questions - unfortunately he would usually get all right but if he ever got one incorrect it was time for me to gloat. Also at the very end there is a test split into three groups which asks you questions about what you have learnt. I am so impressed that I got only one wrong so definitly learnt a lot.
The book is aimed at students and a lot of the tests are for the pupils to give to their teachers. But I would say it is perfect for any school age level. It tells it how it was so there is a bit of information in there but nothing too in your face. My husband is now dying to read it as I have been telling him a lot of what I had read. I would give the brief outline of the story and then he would continue telling me excitedly what happened even though I had just read about it.
If you are a history buff or just would like to know what happened to the Romans, Greeks, Persians etc - then this book is fantastic. For fifteen dollars it is well worth it. Definitly a keeper for the bookcase.
This is the first Horrible Histories book I have read. Groovy Greeks caught my attention as I studied Classical Studies at school and already had some knowledge and interest in the topic. If only the subject had been delivered in such an entertaining and interesting fashion.
The book combines fact with creative comments, hooking the reader in. It provides a great introduction to Greek history, legends and way of life. The book is aimed at a child's level (aged 7+); however, it is not dumbed down. It includes all the correct names for place, people etc, even if they are hard to read for younger readers. Some of these key words are displayed in bold. This allows the reader to notice them and to ask someone for further detail or assistance with pronunciation. I know that even young children like to be challenged with new words and often find the really tricky ones easier than the supposedly easy three letter words!
I believe that lots of discussion could come from reading this book and it could foster a life long interest in classics and Greek history. It could inspire children to ask questions about the basic facts they have been given in the book and to further their knowledge. My mother is a high school teacher and teaches Greek Drama at Year 12 level. After reading the book, she commented that she could use the book to help the students learn about the background to the life and customs of Greek times.
Unlike a novel, this book can be opened at any page and you will learn something. You don't need to read it in sequence because it is a series of short anecdotes. The index allows a reader to find a particular topic in the book or to pop back to something of interest.
There are projects related to the text in the book, e.g. instructions on how to make a keyhole camera and guidelines on how to play several ancient Greek games. I could see my nine year old nephew getting caught up in all these cool tasks. This would certainly inspire him.
There are lots of cartoons and comic strips throughout the book. The is also a lot of variation in the font used to engage the reader. As I was reading the book, I noticed that one of the pages was folded. I was concerned that I had damaged the book while it was in my bag. Upon closer viewing, I realised that it was part of the graphics of the book. It was so realistic that I didn't notice initially that it was just colour variation on the page. I thought that it was very clever.
I think that the style in which the book has been written would be very much appealing to children and even high school students.
I will be hunting out further Horrible Histories books to read myself. When Mr Four is a little older, I will share them with him. After reading Groovy Greeks, I think that the series is probably just a little over his head at the moment. Once he is into them, I envisage both of us sitting together giggling away as we read them and discussing all the fabulous stories from history.
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