Book Review: Ancient Wonders - A stunningly illustrated introduction for the more advanced reader
Updated: Sep 5, 2022
Written by: Iris Volant
Illustrated by: Avalon Nuovo
Published by: Flying Eye Books
Recommended reading age: 7-11 years old
Ancient Wonders is a stunningly illustrated introduction to the seven wonders of the ancient world for the more advanced reader.
The narrative provides an introduction to the wonders themselves, as well as the inspiration behind them and the ancient building techniques used to create them. When you consider that these huge edifices were created without the use of modern technology, you can see why they are considered wonders. They are also shrouded in mystery which adds to their intrigue, and the book provokes further thought on why some of these wonders were constructed, or if indeed they were ever actually constructed at all!
Alongside the seven wonders, like the Pyramid of Giza and the Garden of Babylon, the reader is given some other marvels to consider that provide additional examples of the inspired building techniques used by our ancestors.
Each wonder and its story is presented in delightful detail through Nuovo’s illustrations which I think are the highlight of this book. I also like the illustrated timeline at the end which serves to give the reader a better understanding of when these wonders existed.
The way the book is published also exudes quality. It is printed with a matt finish on high-grade FSC certified paper which adds weight and texture to the illustrations. The addition of spot UV on the cover gives it a classy and expensive-looking finish. You are definitely getting ”bang for your buck”.
However, despite the use of bold colour and big imagery, in my opinion, this book is more suited to the advanced reader, or for a parent reading with their child. It uses some complex language and themes that might challenge the less advanced reader. I would recommend having a dictionary to hand for some of the more complicated words to ensure you get the most out of the information.
A phonetic guide to pronunciation would be useful for the names and places included in the text for those less confident readers, or those readers like myself who want to get their pronunciation right. Indeed a map, to indicate the location of these ancient civilizations, wouldn’t go amiss either.
That said, Ancient Wonders is packed full of detail and provides a brief, but enlightening foray into the amazing world of our ancestors. It is a good addition to any budding historian or engineer’s bookcase. I would also recommend it for those who enjoy a good quality book with exquisite illustrations and plenty of quality family reading time.
A big thank you to Flying Eye Books for providing us with a review copy of 'Ancient Wonders'.
If you'd like to buy the book, you can find more information on the Flying Eye Books website