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on 3 July 2016
Super books! There are simply not enough superlatives to chuck upon them. Human history is not a pleasant subject, nor is the present, and the future might even be worse, but at least we can laugh, can't we, as we exploit, cheat, injure, murder one another, singly and/or in huge numbers, either that or just rot away? Distance not only makes the heart grow fonder, but also the hurt seem not quite so bad. But oh it is, it is. Stupid deaths indeed.
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on 21 April 2016
3* only because this was missing the groovey Greeks. It had two awsome egyptions. I got this for £13 free postage and packaging! I would complain if I didn't think I was getting it for a steal anyway! Apart from the obvs, Everything about it awsome!
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on 11 August 2009
Recently I reviewed another book in this series, The Gorgeous Georgians, which was the first book from the Horrible Histories series I'd read . I was impressed with it, and enjoyed reading through it with my daughter so much, that I decided to go and get some more books in the series . The second book I've read is Rotten Romans.

The Horrible Histories series is a collection of illustrated books written by the wonderful author known as Terry Deary, with illustrations provided by Martin Brown . I did a little research into Terry Deary , and happened across the fact that he's written over 200 books! There are loads of books in this particular series, which aims to teach history in a way more fun and exciting for younger people - by including some of the more unbelievable facts about the era. This particular book focuses on Ancient Rome from 753 b.c right up to 446 a.d , and covers all sorts of areas - Evil Emperors, Roman recipes, Roman folk tales - all sorts of information.

After a brief introduction, which like the first book takes a little time to poke fun and teachers, you're launched into the book with a timeline - nicely presented bite size facts, many illustrated with a small jokey cartoon. There is also a nice little map of England as it would have been back then, with 21 of the leading tribes and their locations clearly mapped out . I found this map a useful reference to come back to at various stages in the book,and it helped me in explaining things to my daughter.

Opening the book, the text is a nice size for young readers (my daughter is six, and can read this with a little assistance from me) although some passages are written in Italics, or as though they were handwriting, which she finds a little harder to read .

There are illustrations on every page, making it far more lively as a book, and also enabling my daughter to interpret new words a little easier. Most illustrations have a small joke, often in the form of a pun included . My daughter is a little too young to understand many of the jokes, but I got a chuckle out of them .

The wording in the book is simple, but not patronising, and although there are a few words that might be trickier for young readers, they are often explained and broken down to make them easier to understand .

Unlike the first book, there is a quiz element to the early chapters of this, that present you with situations faced by the Roman Army, and ask you what decision you think was made in that situation . This was perhaps a little too challenging for my daughter, but the books are aimed at slightly older children . Instead of taking it as a quiz, I read each question then looked up the answer and explained it to her.

I did the Romans at school when I was younger, but I'd forgotten a lot of the information , so reading this book revived my memory of what I'd learned at school, as well as teaching me a lot of new things about this period in history - such as the fact that the Army would keep 2/7ths of your wages, and save them for you. When you retired, assuming you lived long enough to retire, you were given back this lump sum, meaning you could retire in relative comfort .

We actually made together one of the recipes included in the book, Numidian Chicken, which is chicken in a fruity, spicy, honeyed sauce . It was actually pretty nice, although we did steer very clear of trying out the various cures suggested in one part of the book . Now, I'm a very tired person, I have trouble sleeping, but their remedy for tiredness, which involved crushing frogs and shrimp together, is one I prefer to avoid for the time being . I also didn't realise that the game Blind Mans Bluff was around during those times .

Whilst the book was enjoyable, I found it more challenging for my daughter than the first book we read was . Whether this was because I knew less about the period, or because the book was actually more difficult I can't say - however, the books are aimed at kids over 8, so my daughter is a little young for these . With that said, I still recommend picking up a copy .

A great way to further your childs interest in history .
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on 12 October 1999
The Groovy Greeks is a good book to read it is a way of learning history if you're not good at it or you do not like learning history. I have not read many in the series. I have learned a lot from them and they give info about things children like to know like the gross bits about it. Like the way they sacrifice a person for the gods or the way they punish people for crimes like putting people in an iron house and heating it up until they melted to death.
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on 14 February 1999
The Groovy Greeks is funny and helped me a lot with my homework! Martin Brown's illustations make it even funnier. It taught me a lot about Ancient Greece.
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on 7 January 2016
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on 17 September 2001
We discovered Horrible Histories books while living in Switzerland (we are now back in the U.S.). My 11-year-old son's enjoyment of his Latin class was immensely enhanced by the great stories and ideas he gained from Rotten Romans. I strongly recommend the entire series.
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on 27 October 2011
I bought this box as it was on a list of recommended books for my son in year 7. There are 20 books in the set which are: Savage Stone Age, Awesome Egyptians, Groovy Greeks, Rotten Romans, Cut-Throat Celts, Smashing Saxons, Vicious Vikings, Stormin' Normans, Angry Aztecs, Incredible Incas, Measly Middle Ages, Terrible Tudors, Slimy Stuartsm, Gorgeous Georgians, Vile Victorians, Villainous Victorians, Barmy British Empire, Frightful First World War, Woeful Second World War and Blitzed Brits. Very good value for money and helps with the curriculum, even up to GCSE. Other books in the Horrible Histories series that I would suggest you buy are Dark Knights and Dingy Castles (Horrible Histories Special) and Ruthless Romans (Horrible Histories).
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on 15 September 2011
Was looking for some entertaining historical facts about Romans' Empire and found not so much. I had a feeling that the only things Romans did during the world invasion is to invade UK. You have more historical facts about each buttle of brits against Romans or Romans against Brits then any fact of live of Romans in their own towns, democracy, etc. There are 136 pages in the book and first 45 of them are about Brits, Celts, etc - their life, their fights.
Probably, next time Terry Deary tries to write fun about history of any country he really needs some help from Peter Hepplewhite as he used in Awesome Egyptians - that book is REALLY funny and REALLY about Egyptians.
So, a book quite limited use vs the whole Horrible serie.
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on 24 May 2009
Great for kids - especially as they are learning about many of these eras of history in school
Great service - arrive quickly and great price
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