Title: Terrible True Tales from the Tower of London
Author: Sarah Kilby/Historic Royal Palaces
Illustrator: Peter Cottrill
Publisher: Walker Books
Genre: Children’s Non-Fiction, History, Humour
Description: Join the Ravens for their true tales of mishaps and mayhem. Packed with fascinating facts, discover horrible and hilarious stories about the Tower of London. Find the answers tothese questions and many more:
- Which prisoner got stuck in his toilet trying to escape?
- What happened when a polar bear was kept at the tower?
- Who was executed with eleven blows of an axe?
With an afterword by the Ravenmaster.
My Review: I really love this book! Packed with lots of facts on the history of the Tower of London, it’s both informative and such a fun read! ‘Terrible True Tales from the Tower of London’ is very similar to a ‘Horrible Histories’ book and perfect for both kids and adults. The ravens from tower are the narrators of the book and the first pages introduces us to these funny characters as well as the basics of the Tower such as a map and all the monarchs and which houses they belong to before launching into several chapters each about different facts.
Each chapter focuses on a different aspect of the Tower’s history such as who was beheaded at the tower, the crown jewels and various mishaps with them, the animals that were kept at the Tower as part of a zoo and escape attempts to name some of the chapters in this book. There’s even a chapter about the warders of the Tower including why they are called Beefeaters (an interesting fact I always wondered about!). Each chapter is filled with lots of interesting facts. Stories are short with lots of funny illustrations surrounding them and there’s a little quiz at the end of each chapter to keep you entertained and see of you know some facts that you read about (and some you didn’t).
The illustrations throughout the book really add to the humour and there are some funny jokes throughout! I really love pictures like these, they make the gory facts easier to read and really make you remember what you are reading as they make some funny incidents you read about even sillier due to the pictures.
I love the fact that the ravens are the narrators and the last section of the book is an afterword by the Ravenmaster which explains some fun facts about the ravens themselves! The whole book has made me want to go and see the Tower and the ravens again (I’ve been to the Tower of London quite a few years ago) and I’m sure lots of kids and adults would love to go there too after reading this book.
Whether you want to visit or not, this book is packed with so many interesting and fun facts that I’m sure everyone would love to read this. I haven’t stopped telling people all the facts I’ve learned and I’ll definitely be re-reading this book again even if it is aimed at kids! Overall a really brilliant and informative book and one I’d really recommend!
-Thanks to Walker Books for a free copy.
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