Top critical review
8 people found this helpful
on 25 July 2009
These books seem to have a lot of satisfied customers and I suppose one should be pleased at anything that is getting anybody turned onto history. However, I really can't see what all the fuss is about. The layout and the drawings are ugly, cheap and messy. Underneath the superficially naughty 'eeww, gross' approach, the actual history is very old-fashioned, basic and unimaginative. As if it was important to know who Henry VIII's six wives were ... tell us something about the Tudor age that'll surprise us, for goodness's sake! Something that might make us think, and try to imagine how that age and its thought processes made sense to people who lived then, as ours does to us now?! Instead the past is simply treated as a freak show.
R.J. Unstead's 'People in History', way back in the 1960s, was infinitely superior: unlike these books, it respected (a) its subject and (b) its audience.
And another point: why do unfavourable reviews always get 'not helpful' votes? I should have thought I was doing a useful job advising people to save their money and avoid this oversold rubbish - or at least providing an alternative point of view.