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  • Writer's picturehffishwick

Autumn Non-Fiction

We have been sent some brilliant non-fiction books recently which have all proven popular, especially with my son.

The Greeks is the follow up to The Egyptians, which we've already read multiple times. Full of bright colours, awesome facts and plenty of interactive flaps, it's a great book for introducing younger readers to ancient history.

The Greeks felt a bit more grown up than the Egyptians - perhaps just because its hard to retell Greek myths without any violence in them! Covering everything from the Spartan regime to the trials of Heracles, this book is packed with information and exciting stories. Its arrival was perfectly timed, as my daughter has just started learning about myths in school and this book has definitely helped to fuel her interest in mythology.

As well as ancient legends, The Greeks showcases famous historical figures such as Archimedes and Hypatia and explores ancient views on everything from democracy to zoology. Extreme sports, theatre and the structure of society all feature too, giving a brief but comprehensive overview of all things Ancient Greek.

The illustrations bring the stories to life in an exciting and engaging way. The double layers of flaps add an additional level of interest, making this book easy for young readers to get involved with.

If you're looking for a way to introduce Greek mythology to younger readers, this book is a great way to do so.

As Large as Life is a stunning book bursting with animal facts. With 26 different habitats and over 200 animals , it's a book you can return to again and again. Every page focuses on a different habitat, some quite general, like the 'deep blue' or 'the shore', others more specific, such as the river Nile and the Black Forest. The drawings allow readers to easily compare each animal's size, making this a book young children can pour over and enjoy long before they can read its words. There are lots of measurements too. Some are for specific body parts, like the Komodo dragon's 30cm long tongue and a hummingbird's 10cm beak, as well as lengths and heights for animals of all sizes.

The jewel-toned colour scheme is warm and inviting. We really like the bioluminescent beast page, which features anglerfish and firefly squid, but every page is a visual treat.

There is also a fold-out page at the end comparing animals across the world. It's a fantastic addition, with so many details that you can spend as long looking at it as you can reading the rest of the book. It seems almost a shame that you can't remove it from the book and display it!

First Big Book of Why is a perfect book for readers who are always asking questions (and parents who don't know all the answers!) It covers a huge range of topics - from animals to space. My son has really enjoyed reading a few pages at random before bedtime, and this is a great book to dip in and out of rather than reading cover to cover - although there's no reason why you couldn't do that too.

It's packed with bright illustrations as well as photography. Simple annotated diagrams make complex concepts like gravity easier to understand.

The book is split into different sections, based on themes, and each has a mini 'Wow! What's that?' quiz at the end for readers to get involved with.

The First Big Book of Why would make a brilliant gift for inquisitive young minds and also work well in a school library.

Thank you Little Tiger and Britannica Books for sending us these brilliant titles to review


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