Viking Longship by Mick Manning and Brita Granstrom
|Viking Longship by Mick Manning and Brita Granstrom|
|Category: Children's Non-Fiction|
|Reviewer: Louise Jones|
|Summary: Follow Viking Grimm and his family as they travel in their longship, the Sea Dragon and prepare to settle in Britain.|
|Buy? Maybe||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 40||Date: January 2014|
|Publisher: Frances Lincoln|
|External links: Author's website|
Fly on the Wall is a new series of history books by award-winning duo Manning and Granström, which aim to bring history to life for young readers. Viking Longship is the story of Grimm, a Viking warrior who buys a broken ship called the Sea Dragon and fixes it up to set sail in search of pastures new. The story follows Grimm's progress as he invades England with his band of warriors and then creates a farm settlement where his family can live in peace. The book touches on various aspects of Viking life before coming full circle when the settlement is raided by Saxons, culminating in a Viking funeral and a final image of the longboat in flames.
The style of the book is innovative and quirky, although I did feel that some of the pages were too 'busy', with no clear focal point and too much going on in the scenes. Each section has a clear title followed by a short synopsis and the bottom of each page has more detailed text. The images are a combination of illustrations, scribbly handwriting and 'real life' stains like blood spattered over the page. It even contains a recipe for Viking bread.
The story of Grimm and his family is engaging, even though it does not have a happy ending! The book touches on Viking religion and rituals, battle strategy, day-to-day living and funerals. It gives a rounded overview of Viking life in a concise format.
The book also has a useful glossary at the end, which explains some of the terms used in the book and also encourages young readers to go on and do further research. I did spot a slight error in the glossary, as it defines 'nits' as blood-sucking insects (most parents will know that the nits are actually the eggs of the headlouse), but maybe I'm just nitpicking...
Viking Longship will be a useful tool for students in primary school who are studying the topic of Vikings in history and I thank the publishers for my review copy.
Older children interested in this time period may enjoy Viking Girl by Pauline Chandler
You can read more book reviews or buy Viking Longship by Mick Manning and Brita Granstrom at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy Viking Longship by Mick Manning and Brita Granstrom at Amazon.com.
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