Eiffel's Tower for Young People by Jill Jonnes
|Eiffel's Tower for Young People by Jill Jonnes|
|Category: Children's Non-Fiction|
|Reviewer: Linda Lawlor|
|Summary: Pacy, intriguing and informative: this history of the 1889 World's Fair in Paris and the creation of its most famous symbol is clear and accurate whilst remaining utterly readable.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 360||Date: March 2019|
|Publisher: Seven Stories Press|
|External links: Author's website|
Brash and elegant, sophisticated, controversial and vibrant, the 1889 World's Fair in Paris encompassed the best, the worst and the beautiful from many countries and cultures. The French Republic laid out model villages from all their colonies, put on art shows, dance performances, food festivals and concerts to stun the senses. And towering above it all, the most popular and the most hated monument to French accomplishment and daring – the Eiffel Tower.
This fascinating book gives readers basic engineering information about the Tower, along with contemporary photos taken at each stage of its construction. You'll learn about the problems Monsieur Eiffel encountered along the way, including the old ladies who tried to sue him because they were certain the first gust of wind would send the whole edifice crashing down on their homes. Journalists, politicians, and practically every Parisian who considered himself an expert on art, beauty and good taste (in other words, pretty well all of them) caused outcry after outcry at the ugliness of the thing, at the impossibility of building and maintaining it safely, and at the thought that from its various platforms people would spend their time peeping in through people's bedroom windows. And yet . . . it's still there, and has become the most recognisable symbol of Paris.
But this is not just the account of one creation, striking as the Tower is. It's the story of a young Republic, facing a new century and keen to show the world what it could accomplish. Inevitably this attitude led to fierce rivalry with the United States. This book recounts all this and much, much more, with well-chosen photographs and anecdotes so that it reads as easily as a novel. Find out how visitors viewed Edison's inventions, what happened to the Sioux once the Fair was over, and which monarch had no head for heights. Discover who received offers of marriage almost daily, and what she did with the photos her hopeful suitors sent her. Which society beauty, her name scandalously linked with that of a member of the British royal family, took part in a Wild West show? And what terrible reversal of fortune awaited Monsieur Eiffel once the Fair was over? The book is adapted from a book on the same theme written for adults: this one, stuffed with information, drama and story as it is, will definitely appeal to young adults and yet be accessible to most secondary school pupils. The only difficulty will be prising it out of the hands of any nearby grown-ups.
Budding history buffs will find plenty of books out there which present facts about our past in an engaging and informative way. Bookbag really enjoyed 50 Things You Should Know About the Vikings by Philip Parker, which like Ms Jonnes' book appeals to young people across a wide range of age-groups.
You can read more book reviews or buy Eiffel's Tower for Young People by Jill Jonnes at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy Eiffel's Tower for Young People by Jill Jonnes at Amazon.com.
Like to comment on this review?
Just send us an email and we'll put the best up on the site.