Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Avoid Working in a Victorian Mill by John Malam and David Antram (Salariya / Book House)


Avoid Working in a Victorian Mill (Danger Zone Series)

Written by John Malam
Illustrated by David Antram

Published by Salariya / Book House

Salariya / Book House's fantastic Non Fiction range for kids is a huge hit with us at ReadItDaddy, covering a broad range of historical subjects and periods. Charlotte finds herself drawn to the many books in the range that deal with Victorian life and on a recent museum visit, picked this one out of a book stack to buy with her own money (it's testament to how good a book series is when kids will gladly spend their hard earned pocket money on a particular range!)

In "Avoid Working in a Victorian Mill" kids are in the firing line once again, as we find out how young children were often pressed into service at their local textile factories and mills. Children as young as Charlotte would be given dangerous and hazardous tasks, expected to learn their trade quickly, and often be paid a pittance in return. Dangers such as horrible lung diseases brought on by breathing cloth fibres, or losing fingers to whirling twirling machinery were just some of the nasties to avoid.

Children's history books have been given a vital shot in the arm in recent years by things like "Horrible Histories" but this range stands out on its own merits, purely because it serves up such a great range of subjects and fascinating facts presented in detailed layouts throughout the whole book. If you have children who think history is a complete bore, turn them onto this series - they might just change their minds - and they'll certainly be glad they don't live in Victorian times.

Charlotte's best bit: Having to "Kiss" the shuttle to pull the thread through the eyelet before weaving

Daddy's Favourite bit: An utterly brilliant and engaging range, definitely worth looking into if your own children seem reluctant to engage with non-fiction stuff or history books

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