General rating: ★★★
Diversity rating: not applicable (non-fiction)
This book is not like any book I have ever read, ever.
Escapades in Bizzarchaeology by Adrian Burrows
The History Book For People Who Don’t Like History – Yet! Captain Max Virtus has spent his life Excavating the Extraordinary and Unearthing the Unusual. Gathering the history of the Bizarre to exhibit in his Warehouse of Bizzarchaeology. Now you have the opportunity to take a guided tour of his life’s work, in this, his personal journal. Discover why bats were used as bombs, how an emu can defeat a tank, the reason why guns were installed in cemeteries … and how you can get shot with an arrow … and survive. All this … and then things get really weird! Take History To The Max
When the writer contacted me to review this book, I was very doubtful about whether I should accept or not. It is not a book I would normally go for, but then I read the teaser:
THE HISTORY BOOK FOR
PEOPLE WHO DON’T LIKE
And I would love to love history, because I believe it can be very fascinating, but I have never been really fascinated by it before. So when I started this book, I didn’t really have a lot of expectations, but I hoped it to be interesting.
This book is a mix of fiction and non-fiction, it is written as the logbook of Max Virtus, an adventurer and expert in the (imaginary) field of bizzarchaeology. This is basically archaeology but then about all the crazy things that happened in the past. The book consists of sections about different topics such as the Ninja Dojo (about ninja’s) and the Zoo (about animals).
The most important thing that I loved about this book was the interesting stories. Do you ever need a topic to talk about to seem interesting to your dining guests? Believe me, something from this book will definitely do this. The stories that I loved most were the ones about the animals (especially the one with the elephant army and pigs on fire), and the Viking and Ninja stories. There were a few stories I liked less, such as the mummy and weapons stories.
What I liked less was the narration by Max Virtus, he is a little over-the-top sometimes and it made me confused about what really happened and what was fiction. The line is easily crossed in this book, which was something that I personally found a little annoying.
I would recommend this book if you like random facts and history, or if you don’t like history but just are curious. It is definitely a fun read and I believe that this is especially something maybe younger boys would enjoy. For some reason, I think it would work (maybe with a few changes) very well for 11-14 year olds. However, it is also very enjoyable for older people (such as me :P). I give this book 3 stars, because although it was enjoyable, there were some things I would have changed.