'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Sunday 29 November 2015

Review: Historium

The latest in the striking Welcome to the Museum series, this beautiful, large format book is a true visual/information feast.

'Curated' by Richard Wilkinson and Jo Nelson (Richard did the pics, Jo the text), it's clear an enormous amount of hours went into both researching this highly informative tome, and illustrating it in a way that's truly luminous.

Taking readers on a journey into an archaeological past via Africa, America, Asia, Europe, the Middle East and Oceania, we enter such worlds as Ancient Egypt, China and Greece, Mesopotamia, Melanesia and Early Islam.

We meet such people as the Olmecs, the Maya, Aztecs, Pueblo, Maori and Indigenous Australians.

We learn about the study of archaeology (learning about the past through the traces civilisations have left behind), and witness the earliest of tools, the ruins of ancient settlements, burial grounds, art, everyday objects, early writing, and much, much more.

This is a book you'll track down your readings glasses for because it appeals as much to the time-advanced as it does to the tots--and many any hour could be poured into its pages, hands smoothing over the pages, as I found mine so often did.

Richly-produced, Historium's illustrations, facts, and layout are enticingly-designed and nothing short of fascinating. It would make a perfect addition to schools but also the home, where the whole family can marvel over a past so richly brought to life.

Curiously, the book's official details recommend this title for children either aged 7 and up, or aged 6 to 9. I feel few children under the age of 10 (and I'm being generous here) would feel at ease with the bulk and depth of the text and information presented here. Most certainly, however, they could enjoy the striking images.

Title: Historium
Author: Jo Nelson
Illustrator: Richard Wilkinson
Publisher: The Five Mile Press, $39.95 RRP
Publication Date: 1 October 2015
Format: Hard cover, large format
ISBN: 9781760068202
For ages: 10+
Type: Picture Book, Non-Fiction