Timeline Science & Technology: A Visual History of Our World by Peter Goes


Timeline Science & Technology: A Visual History of Our World by Peter Goes. Translation by Bill Nagelkerke. Gecko Press, 2020. 9781776573004

Format: Hardcover

Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 4

What did you like about the book? This large format book is an excellent way to browse through the scientific accomplishments of humankind, from Paleolithic times to the present day. Each page opening displays an era, a century, or, in the case of the 20th and 21st centuries, a decade. A paragraph overview is amplified by a visual conceptual representation of the time’s advancements, with important people and inventions mentioned. Goes’s playful graphic art channels the era, and the humanoid people, uniformly lumpen, demonstrate new technologies. Really more of a browsing book than for research, still it encapsulates much of human knowledge with fun details and whimsical art. Each page opening has a different mid-range color, with no white pages, which I think complements the quirky visual take on history. The writing is concise and to the point, with the comprehension level more for older kids. Translated from the Dutch, this would make a fun gift.

Anything you didn’t like about it? No index; not many black folks; no mention of Africa after Ancient Egypt. An effort was clearly made to find women of renown (for example, in 1950-1959, Rosalind Franklin gets her own mention, apart from Watson and Crick), but still there are few. Also, with its large size, this book probably will not fit on library shelves.

To whom would you recommend this book? Goes has written a number of large format visual history books, so his fans will love another title, for ages 5-12.

Who should buy this book? Elementary schools and public libraries

Where would you shelve it ? 600s

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: October 21, 2020

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