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John Malam has a real touch when it comes to making "school" topics riveting and this book is no exception. Whether this book is being used in the classroom or for pleasure it is sure to amuse. Packed full of fascinating, and sometimes shocking, facts about our Victorian ancestors, it is very well laid out. This is one of the best non-fiction history books for children I have seen.
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Fabulous book - made my kids laugh out loud! This is how history needs to be presented in school - makes it 'come to life'.
As a writer myself, I feel a curious mixture of delight and envy as I read this book...
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on 2 March 2002
This book provides modern young children with an idea of what it was like to be them but in 19th century England.
It is good. It is entertaining. It is informative. And it does seem to be well researched.
So, I would recommend it and agree with the favorable review of the Guardian newspaper.
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on 14 September 2013
Purchased the book for my son who is studying the victorian period in year 2 .
I would recommend the book as it really caught my sons attention both with the facts and illustrations. He is a good reader and is able to read the book himself which I appreciated. Some other reference books I have purchased for the same subject are not written/displayed in a way that he has wanted to read them himslef.
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on 31 July 2015
An engaging way for lower reading age students entering key stage 3 to learn about the victorian era. Hood use of images, good size font and appropriate use of both types of media.
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on 28 June 2015
Great service, as described and quick posting. Thank you.
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on 12 March 2015
Arived as described and on time. Grandson enjoying it now!
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on 11 December 2015
brilliant shows children what is was like then
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on 24 June 2013
I've read the three 5* reviews testifying to the appeal of this book for child readers. Let that testimony go uncontested.

As an adult, I found the contents neither "fascinating and, at times, shocking", as one reviewer enthused. I found myself expecting & approving of many of the "shocking" features, such as children standing up when teachers enter the room, the memorization of long passages of poetry, and the like. Today's child-centered and impulse-oriented education has resulted in metal detectors at school entrances, armed guards patrolling corridors, drug dealings and plummeting literacy. This modern mix is so scary, I'd prefer to be in a Victorian school where things were kept orderly. My father wouldn't have found a Victorian school unfamiliar, and when he dropped out of his Chicago high school he brought with him an elegant handwriting of sensitivity and beauty that earned him compliments all his life. My mother recited long passages of memorized poetry into her 80s. Neither complained about the citizen's responsibilities instilled or about "lessons they'd rather not have learned" - to quote from the book's subtitle.

I wasn't out of order in hoping this book would be fun for me, and enlightening, too. I loved another book in this same children's serires, "Avoid being a Victorian Servant" which was full of wit, surprises and valuable knowledge . By contrast, this one was content to set up fat targets to disparage. OK, I don't contest the 5* reviews, kids enjoy it, but they've seen part of their heritage banged around and they've been given an unfair, one-sided view of Victorian education that prejudices them, in a backstairs way, against part of their country's past.
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on 29 February 2016
Love the book
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