After reading so much amazing fiction in the last few months, it makes a nice break to review some non-fiction. It’s almost like a literary bank holiday – a time to refresh and wonder at the extraordinary world we are in, before returning invigorated to the made up worlds of others.
Questions and Answers by Catherine Chambers and Chris Oxlade (why do the writers of non-fiction not have their names on the cover?) fits the bill nicely. At nearly 400 pages long, there’s a chunkiness to the book and the range of content guarantees longevity. The subjects have been chosen wisely with sections on Space, Weather, Pirates, Inventions and lots of history, including Ancient Egypt, Rome and the Vikings.
Each page contains a ‘big question’ exactly of the kind that young children ask, such as ‘What Makes Rain?’. More often it’s the kind of question that induces the uncomfortable feeling of I-really-should-know-this-I’m-a-grown-up (the one that usually means a grab for the laptop and hitting ‘search’!). The pages are bright and easy to skim and scan, with a nice mix of photographs and illustrations. And the cover is inviting in a way that draws in boys and girls.
A recommended non-fiction book – one to read now, and one to return to when you get asked those head-scratching questions: ‘Daddy, how do you make a magnet…?’
A copy of Questions and Answers was sent for review by the publishers.