Saturday, January 06, 2018

Battle with the Britons: Julius Zebra #2

34928690Northfield, Gary. Battle with the Britons: Julius Zebra #2
January 2nd 2018 by Candlewick Press
E ARC from

Julius and his companions are back after Rumble with the Romans, since Hadrian has not given them their freedom as promised after their last battle in the Colosseum. Julius and his friends the crocodile, warthog, lion, mouse and giraffe are sent to Britain to spread the news that Hadrian is a great guy. Not surprisingly, when they arrive, the reception is not great AND the animals they have to face in battle are much better than they are. Julius assesses the situation and comes up with a great idea to save the day, and possibly his friends as well. The book ends on a cliff hanger, but we will have to wait until Entangled with the Egyptians comes out in the US.
Strengths: This is a goofy notebook novel with pop eyed animals fighting with swords, and there are enough immature jokes to keep younger readers guffawing. For older readers, there is a bit of Roman history. This is akin to a historical Stick Dog book, although Julius is not quite bright enough to be as philosophical as Stick Dog.
Weaknesses: I'm never quite sure how accurate the history is, in the same way that I'm always a bit confused by Lucy and Andy Neanderthal. Oldfield apparently worked on some of the Horrible Histories, so I'll assume that the details are correct. Will 12 year olds care? Most likely not.
What I really think: Definitely have to purchase this one, as the first has been popular and at least gives students a small taste of Ancient Rome!

Ms. Yingling

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