Would You Believe...bed testers get paid to sleep?! by Richard Platt

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Would You Believe...bed testers get paid to sleep?! by Richard Platt

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Category: Children's Non-Fiction
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: John Lloyd
Reviewed by John Lloyd
Summary: An enjoyable entry in a very bright and engaging series of trivia and knowledge for the primary school age child, concerning the world of work.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 48 Date: April 2010
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 978-0199119868

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It is quite certain the reader of this book will not be a bed tester, however broad the smile it carries as it suggests anyone can get the employment they dream after. Neither will she or he be a vital scribe for some ancient civilisation, a slave, a drudge, or a worker in a Communist collective farm. But it is definitely an eye-opener how all that and so much more can be considered by just 48 tidy pages.

The only fault I have with this series of books is that they are not quite as tidy as they should be. It is a harder read than it need be, with three font sizes used where one would have done for a child of my generation. It can be very awkward to try and read each double-page spread in chronological order.

But that is a minor fault, and if I had a child interested in the subject matter of any of these ten books I would like them to enjoy a book such as this. It presents its facts in a handy way, via a couple of paragraphs only on each topic, and copious captions for very well-chosen pictures. It does not have any editorial slant, is accurate, very well produced, and covers its ground quickly and surprisingly comprehensively.

Here, then, we progress from when we as humans were either farmers, or hunter-gatherers (with the surprising statistic those hunter-gatherers were only working four hours a day, more or less), through to the careers the reader (and their parents enjoying a brief browse) might aspire to, right to the robotic factories of the future – and the one that already exists, which makes… robots, of course.

I did have a quibble here, in that it opens with half of lottery winners keeping their jobs as well as sitting on their millions, and by the end that figure is two-thirds. I swear I didn’t take that long in reading it.

In my limited experience of juvenile non-fiction I don’t think this range is ideal for the home – I am sure there are further, more comprehensive reads out there on any of the subjects in the series. But for the school librarian, this book and the others I have experienced will, I am sure, handily replace many older volumes, with a perfectly up-to-date and very enjoyable learning experience.

I must thank the publishers for my review copy.

We can also thoroughly recommend What Do People Do All Day? by Richard Scarry for something similar.

Buy Would You Believe...bed testers get paid to sleep?! by Richard Platt at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Would You Believe...bed testers get paid to sleep?! by Richard Platt at Amazon.co.uk


Buy Would You Believe...bed testers get paid to sleep?! by Richard Platt at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Would You Believe...bed testers get paid to sleep?! by Richard Platt at Amazon.com.

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