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The Story of the Romans Review by Jennifer King

Christine Miller
Nothing New Press
P.O. Box 18335
Sarasota, FL 34276

When I consider those things that I want my children to know well, history is one of those things that comes to mind. Our family truly believes that there is great value in understanding and knowing history. As it happened and as it relates to our life today. For us, there is nothing dull and boring about this topic.

We were really excited to have the chance to use The Story of the Romans, a revised and expanded version of H.A. Guerber. Beginning with the first settlers in Italy, this tells the amazing story of the history of Rome. There is even a timeline in the back of the book which was really helpful to us when we needed a reminder of when certain events occurred.

This book is full of amazing stories that really bring to life the history and the many lessons that we can learn, from Ancient Rome. There are also lovely images of historical pieces of art; there are maps and other visual aids to help our children to see and enjoy this period of time.

Escape from the Burning City and The Mysterious Books are among our favorite tales. In many of these we had great discussion revolving around things of faith, virtue of characters within the stories.  There were many times also that we talked about the similarities between the stories told within these pages, and those within our Bible (such as when Aeneas obeyed his god’s instruction to flee the city, leaving with his family, yet losing his wife in the end when did not obey herself. Sound familiar?

Each story is only 1-2 pages long; this is great for those who are reluctant or struggling readers (like my oldest son).  As you read you are directed to specific locations found on the maps within; with lively and descriptive wording, it’s like travelling back in time. My reluctant reader and my struggling reader both were unable to get enough of these stories; short and simple enough for them, they are filled with enough fascinating details and adventures that we could easily keep reading!

You are bound to have many interesting conversations as you read. Talk at length about those ancient ships - you may even want to make your own, or sketch one for fun. My younger son loved reading about Pyrrhus riding an elephant. He finds that to be a fabulous mode of transportation (if only he could). My boys pondered if they could sacrifice themselves as willingly as did Curtius when he lept into the Chasm all for the good of Rome. And as you read, you see those connections being made; with movies they have seen, other books we have read. This really is an experience as well as an inspiration to understand and know history more.

There is also a fabulous list of recommended reading at the very end of this book. Because after reading all of these stories who isn’t going to be hungry for more? I know we now have a big list of books to search out at our local library.

There are seven volumes in The Story of Western Civilization of which this book is volume three in. We do love these stories and highly recommend them to anyone who is a lover of history.  Of course, if you are not so fond of history, these may very well change that.

-Product review by Jennifer King, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, November, 2017