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review 2017-11-13 06:36
Bog Bodies Uncovered by Miranda Aldhouse-Green
Bog Bodies Uncovered: Solving Europe's Ancient Mystery - Miranda Aldhouse-Green

TITLE:  Bog Bodies Uncovered:  Solving Europe's Ancient Mystery

 

AUTHOR:  Miranda Aldhouse-Green 

 

DATE PUBLISHED:  2015

 

FORMAT: e-book

 

ISBN-13:  978-0-500-05182-5

 

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Miranda Aldhouse-Green takes a look at the mystery of the bog bodies:  how and where they were discovered; the world the bog people lived in; crime scene investigation of the bodies, how bog environments preserve bodies; whether the bog bodies were accident execution or murder victims; the ways they were killed; who might have done the deeds; and why this was done. 

 

The book is interesting and informative, with a great deal of research/references and many photographs.  However, there is also a great deal of speculation, repetition and no definitive answers.  In short, we don't know much about the bog bodies other than the manner of their deaths, but there is a great deal of speculation, and most certainly no solving of any mystery.  Did I mention all the repetition?  

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review 2017-11-06 17:46
Dragonfly Song - Wendy Orr

This was kind of a hard book to review, mostly because it almost falls between genres. It's classed as an upper Middle-Grade historical fantasy, which, that's not wrong . . .

 

I felt like it had more of a classic children's fiction feel to it. It's coming-of-age, and also a sort of epic hero's journey, straddling children's lit and YA in a way that's often done more by adult literary works. It touches on many 'big ideas': deformity, religion/society, acceptance, adoption, trauma, bullying, disability, purpose/identity, fate . . . The format is creative and unique. The story arc stretches from the MC's birth to age 14 and is told in omniscient third person varying with passages in verse.

 

I'm not sure if there was a meaning to the alternating styles; at some points, I thought the dreamlike verse passages were meant to show the MC's perspective in a closer, almost experiential or sensory format as an infant, a toddler, a mute child . . . but then that didn't necessarily carry through, so perhaps it was more to craft an atmosphere for the story.

 

The setting is the ancient Mediterranean, and the story picks up on legends of bull dancing. The world feels distinct, grounded and natural, without heavy-handed world-building. It's a world of gods and priestesses, sacrifice and death and surrender. Humans seem very small within it, and as a children's book, it's challenging rather than comforting. There's death and violence and loss, handled in a very matter-of-fact manner, so I'd recommend it for maybe ages 10+, depending on the child. It's not gratuitously violent or graphic, but it's a raw-edged ancient world where killing a deformed child, having pets eaten by wild animals, beating slaves - including children - and sacrificing people as well as animals to the gods is just part of life. 

 

I was very kindly sent a hardcover edition via the Goodreads Giveaways program, and the book production is lovely. It has a bold, graphic cover with some nice foil accents, a printed board cover (which I prefer for kids books due to the durability), fully illustrated internal section pages, and pleasant, spacious typesetting.

 

Confident, mature young readers will find this an engaging, challenging and meaningful read with an inspiring story arc and some lovely writing. Hesitant readers and very young readers will probably find it a struggle. I'd give it 5/5 as a product, 4/5 as a literary work and 3/5 as kid's entertainment.

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review 2017-10-31 15:16
Amidst Ancient Monuments: The Administra... Amidst Ancient Monuments: The Administrative History of Mound City Group National Monument/Hopewell Culture National Historical Park, Ohio - Ron Cockrell

Hopewell Culture National Historical Park: Mound City
We had just returned from a visit to Ohio and we were able to walk through the mounds ourselves.
I had told my husband how at peace my whole body was. It's a sacred Hopewell tribe ceremonial mounds and earthworks.
We were able to talk to the clerk inside the visitor's center and he informed us of how perfect the circles were but in 800AD they didn't have measuring tools.
Also told us of other areas that have the mounds and that one location was to go public the holiday weekend for a few hours. That only happens a few times every year.
So interesting to hear about the mounds, their purpose and how they were built.
Love hearing of all the mathematical discussions as they had no tools that we have for measuring and they are just perfect. It's all in the clay at the bottom of the mounds-the structures of the mounds are discussed and taken apart so you know what is in each layer.
Hope to visit more when we travel back to Ohio.

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review 2017-09-26 19:18
Too Young for 6th
6th Grade Ancient History: Dawn of Early Man: Prehistoric Man Encyclopedia Sixth Grade Books (Children's Prehistoric History Books) - Baby Professor

Good information, a good starting place, but too young for 6th grade. 

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review 2017-09-26 19:00
Nice Photos, too Young
6th Grade History: First Civilizations: Ancient Civilizations for Kids Sixth Grade Books (Children's Ancient History Books) - Baby Professor

I feel like a broken record...the book is listed for 6th grade but is definitely good for a younger age. 

 

The photography is very nice and well done, the topic is too light for the age. 

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