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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 3 June 2013
I bought this book for an eight year old home-educated history buff and, while she doesn't seem to have much enthusiasm for flicking through its pages by herself, she is more than keen to go through it with an adult. Not just any old adult though, oh no. Anyone who dares to utter the phrase 'you kids of today... you don't know your born, you lot' to her seems to get very short shrift. Quite rightly so in my opinion - anyone who spouts a load of nonsensical rubbish like that deserves to be ignored. Besides which, some of us still like to think of ourselves as being 'young'... even if it is just our mental age. No? Oh well, that must just be me then.

Life was indeed tough for little half-pints in the past, as Tony Robinson manages to convey so brilliantly here. It is a humorous read although also a somewhat uncomfortable one. There is a simple but very useful index and an extremely handy additional page full of suggestions of places to visit which will be able to add more detail to several of the jobs discussed.

The book is packed full of really fabulous illustrations. The fact that the majority of them are rather light-hearted cartoons simply makes the occasional photograph or contemporary drawing all the more thought-provoking. Each children's job is awarded its own score too, being judged on such things as 'Danger', 'Filth', 'Boredom', 'Cash' and 'Hard Slog'. That, together with some truly heartrending factual accounts and a lot of small additonal facts and figures, really does give food for thought for any grown-up today, never mind the kids.
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on 19 March 2010
Tony Robinson has to be one of the best presenters on television, with Time Team and Worst Jobs in History, now he brings his own inimitable style to the written word. In this book, he details the many, many unpleasant jobs that children had to do in the years gone by. His research is astounding and you can feel yourself drawn into the era and situation of the times. What he reveals will amaze the reader and one is left wondering at the terrible existence that the poor children had to endure. Tony does not attempt to gloss over the details, but he still does it in his entertaining way that compels you to keep reading. Definitely a bit shocking, but most enlightening. Every teenager should be made to read it.
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on 18 July 2017
Really sad TBH, makes you relise how bad things used to be for children. Gives today's socialists somethig to think about. Children mistreated, incarcerated.
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on 13 August 2015
Tony Robinson does this so well: it is lively, amusing, and unconventional, with all kinds of stories to entertain. Importantly, it also manages to attract the reluctant reader, through its unusual layout, font, and images.
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on 21 May 2014
Bought this book after I saw it in Waterstones. It was £2.00 cheaper on Amazon (which was a big bonus). My 7 year old son and I read this before bedtime practically everyday and he loves it. It is written in a very child-friendly manner, with simple descriptons and details. There are enough details to keep a 7 year old occupied, without it being too boirng and long-winded. Also,the glossy pages are great and promises to last long. We love this so much that we are now looking to buy the other books in this series...hope it's just as good as this one.
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on 26 March 2013
I love reading this book, its got just about the right amount of information on each job to engage you but not bore you. The pictures bring it to life. My 5 year old and 4 year old love me reading this book to them. The language is too mature for them so I rephrase parts and I do miss out some of the jobs that I worry may scare them as some are rather horrid. I think that it is really aimed at older children but it has been great to engage my children in their Victorian topic at school.
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on 1 August 2016
My daughter loved this book. She said its a very interesting book and very funny.
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on 3 January 2014
This was a great favourite at Xmas for my history loving gradndaughter, just yucky enough in places to be enthralling to a child....and very informative.
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on 13 May 2016
Great book
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on 8 December 2014
Although it's a family Christmas present for a child, I had a browse and even as an adult I was thoroughly engrossed in it and would be happy to have a copy myself.
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