The Industrial Revolution: A Graphic Novel by Lewis Helfand, Art by Naresh Kumar

51df12wercl The Industrial Revolution: A Graphic Novel by Lewis Helfand, Art by Naresh Kumar. Campfire, 2016.  9789381182284

Format: Paperback

Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 2

What did you like about the book? A sweeping graphic history of the inventors and inventions of the Industrial Revolution in England and the United States. Beginning with the invention of the printing press in the 15th century, this book focuses on inventions and innovations of the 18th and 18th centuries that advanced industry. Includes back matter on the 21st century’s “fourth industrial revolution.” Pared down realistic illustrations provide pictorial context to the historical events.

Anything you didn’t like about it?  Aside from a black man shoveling coal on the cover, there are no African-Americans in this book. There is not even a mention of slavery. Nor is there anything about children working in factories, nor women in factories, or women inventors. These omissions create a huge gap in portraying the changes in society that resulted from the Industrial Revolution.

To whom would you recommend this book?  Fans of the Graphic History series may like this. The book could be a starting point for choosing further study of the many inventors during this era.

Who should buy this book? I hesitate to recommend it to any library, but it is appropriate for public libraries where graphic non fiction is popular.

Where would you shelve it ? Children’s or Teen graphic novels

Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? No

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City and State: Stephanie Tournas, Robbins Library, Arlington, MA

Date of review: February 3, 2017

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