Review also includes:
Spartacus: the life of a Roman gladiator, ill. Nick Spender, 978-1904642879
These graphic non-fiction titles endeavour to make accessible to younger children the stories of two great warriors in comic book style – KERRANG!, WHUMPPH!, SPLATTT! included. In my opinion, these epic stories of bravery, heroism and determination are rather long to be depicted in this style. Whilst they may be historically accurate and visually appealing with speech bubbles and vivid colours, the stamina of a young reader will be somewhat tested, following Alexander’s relentless conquests and the rebellions of Spartacus.
The historical context for both stories is explained by way of maps, photographs and opening commentary, while the historical legacy is included after the lengthy strip cartoon section. A glossary, index and list of recommended reading is included in each book. Other titles in the series include Elizabeth I and Hernan Cortes, and future publications include Julius Caesar and Cleopatra. Interestingly, each title has a different illustrator, though the two titles reviewed here are identical in style.