This large-size non-fiction title combines genealogy and history and invites readers to explore the family trees of twenty- five historical figures drawn from a range of periods and cultures. The book aims to capitalise on the popularity of such programmes as ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’ and an increased interest in genealogy to encourage young readers to expand their knowledge of historical figures via their family trees.
This book has worthy intentions and high production values, evidenced particularly in the detailed folk-art style illustrations and borders, but, overall, the reader is left feeling overwhelmed by too much information crammed into too small a space. Each figure is given a double page spread and the resulting family trees are difficult to decipher despite the guide at the beginning of the book. The print is tiny, often against coloured backgrounds and complex information is presented in small boxes with connections made by several different types of lines. The frequent use of italic and several different fonts does not help in terms of readability. Despite these details, there is a lot of information here, and this book should appeal to those readers who already have some knowledge of the historical figures and who love to pore over details and explore connections.