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Our Island Story: A History of Britain for Boys and Girls, from the Romans to Queen Victoria [Hardcover]

H. E. Marshall
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)
RRP: 14.99
Price: 14.24 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

22 Sep 2005 1902984749 978-1902984742 1st. Edition

If you are you looking to inspire your child with the story of British History, H E Marshall's classic children's history of Britain is perfect. First published in 1905, this beautifully written narrative sets out the history of Britain from the Romans to the death of Queen Victoria in a way that has delighted and enthused children for generations. This reprinted, centenary edition includes all 31 of the original, evocative colour illustrations.

Our Island Story Key Benefits:

- Simple narrative, enthralling character descriptions and beautiful illustrations make this the ideal read for children

- The vivid presentation of historical events will capture children's imaginations

- The perfect gift for any child!

Frequently Bought Together

Our Island Story: A History of Britain for Boys and Girls, from the Romans to Queen Victoria + Scotland's Story
Buy the selected items together
  • Scotland's Story 14.39

Product details

  • Hardcover: 494 pages
  • Publisher: Galore Park; 1st. Edition edition (22 Sep 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1902984749
  • ISBN-13: 978-1902984742
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 23.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 59,510 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description


I was given H.E. Marshall's Our Island Story at Christmas 1936 and I've still got that copy. It was a direct inspiration for me in my career as a historian. --Lady Antonia Fraser

The reason that parents will go to such lengths to try to track down copies of Our Island Story is because of the sheer quality of the writing. Telling a story from history might be old-fashioned, but it stimulates a child's imagination like nothing else. --Andrew Roberts, The Sunday Times 2005

Our Island Story is a marvellous antidote to the fractured, incoherent history most primary school childen are taught today. It chimes with the Prince of Wales's campaign to restore narrative and chronology to history teaching and has been endorsed by Antonia Fraser, one of our leading historians, who says the book has earned her lifelong gratitude. --John Clare, Education Editor, The Daily Telegraph

Book Description

First published in 1905, this beautifully written narrative sets out the history of Britain in a way that has delighted and enthused children for generations.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
92 of 94 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Our Island Story - a great read 24 Feb 2006
I bought this book at Christmas for my nine year old and was pleased to find that my eleven year old was captivated by it too. We enjoy reading books out loud as a family and this book makes a great read for sharing. Don't expect it to 'tie-in' with the random topic based school history curriculum, this book is a consecutive account that unashamedly includes an element of myth and magic.I don't think that my children had realised that a clear understanding of the English/ British succession was within their intellectual grasp before hearing this engaging narrative.Furthermore all those Edwards,Henrys and the rest now have a relevance in their minds that was not there before. My children can now see a clear causal link between that subject called 'history' and that thing called 'politics'. Sometimes it takes an exciting story to awaken knowledge and bring it to life. The book covers a very broad sweep of British history and I would recommend it for families to share.
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53 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Reasserting our history 13 Sep 2005
By A Customer
Civitas have done this nation a great service in reprinting this beautifully written history of Britain. At a time when even Gordon Brown is questioning the very meaning of 'Britishness', this enchanting book provides us with a tale of a nation we should all be proud of.
It is the perfect antidote to the lifeless, fragmented history that most children receive today. With its spledid narrative and enticing characters, 'Our Island Story' should be a big hit with children and parents alike.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
By Tabby
It looks more like a history book than anything else, but as soon as I started reading "Our Island Story", I was fascinated. Combining English history with folklore and fairytales, and with a narrative voice so homely that you immediately envision biscuits and milk by a quaint fireplace, this book is charming from the beginning.

As a young girl raised on Hans Christian Anderson and The Brothers Grimm, I've come to expect a lot from my fairy-tales, and the accounts of Merlin and Arthur, Boadicea, and the Civil War are dramatic and moving, and it infuses the characters and dates taught in schools with feelings and emotions, provides history with a sense of humanity. And the pictures - vibrant and engaging - provided an entertaining accompaniment. I'm sixteen and I'm in love with this book. The little children I babysit (7 and 9) were as interested when I read them an excerpt the other day. What more recommendation does it need?!
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Buy it!!! 9 Mar 2007
Our Island Story is truly exceptional. I remember my grandfather reading me this book when I was younger, and being fascinated by what is truly a great narrative of British history. Now reading it to my friend's children, both they (and I!) feel the same. History is suddenly exciting; even the TV is less attractive!! What is more, this new edition has been supplemented with brilliant illustrations that really brings the book alive in their minds. I can only say, buy it!
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94 of 98 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars History that teaches and delights 13 Sep 2005
'In this book you will find the story of the people of Britain', writes the author. She continues: 'The story tells how they grew to be a great people, till the little green island set in the lonely sea was no longer large enough to contain them.'
This is big, bold sweeping history, at once charmingly simple and accessible for children and sufficiently courteous and informative for adults. HE Marshall guides us through from the earliest myths about Albion and Brutus through to the death of Queen Victoria, taking in wars and rebellions, tyrants and outlaws, treachery and love, the evolution of our liberal democracy and the deaths of those who fought for the freedoms that we enjoy today. With a deftness of tone that most writers can only dream of, Marshall's prose is equal to the challenge of expressing tenderness for the Princes in the Tower, and pride for Boadicea - 'the Romans', she points out, 'did not understand that many of the women of Britain were as brave and as wise as the men, and quite as difficult to conquer.' It is unashamedly proud without ever sounding arrogant. We learn how all sorts of great moments or phrases have passed into our folklore and idiom - such as 'England expects' - and all is rendered with an impressive sense of chronological cohesion.
Which is of course topical and explains why this glossy centenary edition has been republished. At a time of great anxiety about how poor is the teaching of history in our schools, how it has become fragmentary and partial, this book shows just how history could foster a shared sense of national identity.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A sumptuous new edition 6 Mar 2007
Even if you've already got the hardback edition of Our Island Story, this new paperback version truly is a keepsake worth buying. The publishers have really put the icing on the cake with this edition by taking a series of glorious paintings from the Palace of Westminster to illustrate H.E Marshall's magical retelling of history. These surprisingly sharp and colourful reproductions will undoubtedly delight children and adults alike with their sumptuous detail.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars My son is far ahead in history
Although some might consider this book old fashioned, and it does include King Arthur at the beginning, who is not really a historical figure, it is the only narrative history of... Read more
Published 8 days ago by Josa Young
1.0 out of 5 stars Perfect in 1900
I agree wholeheartedly with a previous reviewer who suggested that Scots should leave well alone. This is a book about England with the rest of our island mentioned only... Read more
Published 2 months ago by J. MacIntosh
5.0 out of 5 stars brill
I expected this book to be old fashioned but I'd heard that Stephen Fry recommended it so I decided to give it a go and I am so glad I did. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Mel Bridge
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliantly Written
Brought for my 9 year old son. It is very well written and gives plenty of factual history on the great kings and queens of our Country in a very gripping readable fashion, not... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Happy
5.0 out of 5 stars History for Children and Adults too!
This is a great history book written for children but splendid for those who are children at heart still, as every good adult should be. Read more
Published 7 months ago by RevdRMBWest
5.0 out of 5 stars First Rate
Excellent overview of our island story simply but intelligently told and made very readable. Good for young and old alike
Published 8 months ago by John Hector Scotson
5.0 out of 5 stars Our Island Story
I had a copy of this book when I was 7 years old and have referred to it constantly for the 62 years since. Read more
Published 10 months ago by Miranda Bowen
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
This book is meant for children and I read it to my grand daughter. However I realised my own knowledge of history needed revising so I bought myself a paper back copy for my own... Read more
Published 10 months ago by Valerie M Everitt
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
Ideal for my grandson - I even read it too!
A good history book for children.
Definitely worth it and not a bad price
Published 11 months ago by grief
4.0 out of 5 stars Accessible history
A nice, gentle way into the history of the UK, provided you've read a bit of background and understand that not everything in it is accurate.
Published 14 months ago by Matt
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