Book Title: The Homes We Build (available here)
Author: Anne Jonas
Illustrator: Lou Rihn
Publisher: Laurence King Publishing
Publication Date: August 2020
Most Suitable For: Years 5-6
Reviewed By: Nathan Wilcox
The Homes We Build is a fascinating non-fiction text that introduces readers to the weird and wonderful houses, habitats and homes that have spanned the world throughout its history. Each section of the book looks at a different aspect of how humans live; whether it be houses built on the side of a mountain or built into the very mountain itself. This book is thoroughly absorbing with so much detail on every page.
This book has an air of ‘Grand Designs’ about it in the way it presents the ingenuity of these amazing constructions. As I read, I found myself Googling and searching for videos with additional information about some of the more impressive or unusual structures – for example Stefan Eberstadt’s rucksack house which can hang off the edge of a building! This book immediately captures the attention of its reader and encourages further exploration of the topic.
Lou Rihn’s illustrations compliment Anne Jonas’ information perfectly with just the right level of detail. The illustrations make each page exciting as you search the pictures for details; I believe they add an element of intrigue that a photograph simply could not provide. As a teacher, I know this would draw in children’s attention – I can see it being extremely popular in my own class.
As a keen fan of non-fiction, this book made me realise that I had not read anything similar to this before. Its originality piqued my interest and I can imagine it doing the same for children too. The 65 pages flew by as I found it difficult not to read the entire book in one go. There are so many things to discover and learn about in the world of houses and habitats and this book does a truly wonderful job in opening your eyes to them.
Many thanks to the publisher for sending us a review copy of this book and to our Review Panel member for reviewing it.
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