The Comic Strip History of the World by Sally Kindberg and Tracey Turner
The Comic Strip History of the World is, as you might expect, a comic strip history of the world. It covers everything from the Big Bang to the present day, with each period of history summed up in a page or two. It's very much a potted history in the vein of the Horrible Histories series and 1066 and All That. It's a fantastic book, both as a light fun read, and as a brief education into everything that has been before.
The book's great strength is putting everything into its place in history: it's more involving than a simple timeline and more contextual than simply reading a book on the Tudors (or the Greeks, Incas, Aztecs...) It would make a wonderful gift for any child with even a passing interest in history, and adults can also sneak a peek to fill in any gaps in knowledge they'd otherwise be embarrassed to admit to.
Sally Kindberg's illustrations are big, clear and bold. At first I wasn't blown away by the black, white and red colouring; they'd have been stronger either as simply black and white, or with a couple more colours in the mix. This is most noticeable during the (relatively) slow start to the book, but once it hits its stride and you're flicking through page after page of civilisation and human development, this minor quibble washes away to nothing.
There are a couple of laugh out loud moments, but mostly the humour is a gentle and constant level of quirkiness and fun. Most wars are represented as a cartoon-style splat, meaning it's never graphic or unpleasant. History's many tyrants are presented as such. It strikes the perfect balance of making clear what people did, whilst not dwelling on these horrors inappropriately - this is a fun book aimed at children, after all.
The Comic Strip History of the World comes incredibly highly recommended. You'll love it.
My thanks to the publishers for sending it to Bookbag.
If you liked this, you'll also like A Picture History of Great Discoveries by Clarke Hutton and Voyage Across The Cosmos by Giles Sparrow. There's also an excellent sequel: The Comic Strip History of Space by Sally Kindberg and Tracey Turner.
You can read more book reviews or buy The Comic Strip History of the World by Sally Kindberg and Tracey Turner at Amazon.co.uk
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