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The distinctive cover illustration tells you at once that this is a Manning and Granstršm book! You expect it to be well researched, amusing and of great appeal to young readers and Roman Fort comes well up to that expectation. Here is a lively picture of life in a fort on the northern frontier of Roman Britain. Organised under headings like 'Roman Children', 'On Patrol' and 'The Road Builders' this wonderful sketchbook shows us soldiers marching and building roads, people selling their wares, slaves buying food for their households, children playing and opulent feasting. The written text is in a variety of forms and scripts: recipes for party food, lists of gods and goddesses, maps of the fort and labelled pictures of soldiers' quarters. The book gains special energy and momentum by narrating the journey of Lepidina to visit her friend Claudia (wife of the fort commander) escorted by the Centurion, Vespian, and a troop of soldiers. There is a terrifying ambush on the way; the pictures conjure up the sound of horns and trumpets and the clatter of the horse hooves as the Celtic chariots move in and the two sides fight. But how do we know such things happened? Text at the foot of the page records tell-tale signs of battle injuries discovered in the excavated skeletons of Celts and Romans. It is important that children are helped to understand the value of fossil and archeological evidence. They will also learn that wealthy women copied hairstyles from the coins and statues brought from Rome. A useful glossary and index defines terms such as 'century' and 'mosaic' and directs young researchers to sites such as Vindolanda and to the gravestone of Flavinus, a famous standard bearer, preserved in Hexham Abbey. This book would help make National Curriculum History and English exciting. It also has good gift potential as, in addition to all its other qualities, a splendid shiny jacket cover makes it look and feel special.