From outside the hardback cover the Wallbook Timeline Of British History looks like a regular large format book, but open it out and inside is a pocket magnifier, a 2 metre long pullout wallbook, and an 18 page copy of The Chronicle - a brilliant mock up of an imaginary newspaper.
My children have had pull-out books before, but they were very simple and small, and aimed at younger children. At almost 6ft 6in the Wallbook Timeline Of British History is a pull out book on an entirely different scale, and it's designed to be easily removed in case you do want to mount it on the wall.
A neat added extra is the inclusion of a flexible plastic pocket magnifier. The text and pictures on the wallbook are quite small, so it's nice to be able to get a bigger view. My children love using this, it is a really good size and works incredibly well.
When it says history it really means it. The history of Britain starts with the creation of the British Isles, and runs up until the present day, with Tim Peake aboard the International Space Station.
Surprisingly for it's size, the timeline wallbook is really easy to manage. The timeline is only printed on one side, so you can simply read it as a book, or open it out. It unfolds and refolds very neatly. Children can't really be expected to open it out at any length except on the floor, but it's doable if you are a bit taller...
The Chronicle newspaper at the back is nicely done, and even has some different news stories to the timeline. My children loved picking things out, and bizarrely were ecstatic to find The Beatles on the timeline and John Lennon in the newspaper - whereas I was more drawn to Dave Grohl here...
The way information is presented is very visual and in small, memorable snippets. The language used is easy for children to understand, and my children have already spent ages staring at the timeline and telling me all about things that have happened.
We now know why Henry VIII was grumpy, where the first humans on the British Isles lived, and what the Plug Plot Riots were about. These are not things that I knew before, genuinely fascinating to all of us, and probably will come up in a pub quiz one day.
We all think that the Wallbook Timeline Of British History is a fantastic book, and we are going to move stuff around in the bedroom to fit the timeline nicely on the wall. My 7 year old even reads it lying in bed...
This is a lovely and useful book which makes history interesting and doesn't mince it's words, but without making it especially gruesome or disgusting. The illustrations are clear and detailed in spite of their size, and the text isn't intimidating even for my newly 6 year old.
The What On Earth? Wallbook Timeline Of British History has an rrp of £12.99 which I think is an excellent price for something so packed, you really do get value for money. Devised by Christopher Lloyd and visualised by Andy Forshaw it is available to buy now at Waterstones, Amazon or online at What On Earth Books.
We were sent our copy of the book to review.