REVIEW: 100 Things to Know about Inventions

If you’re someone who likes to know a little about everything, this straightforward book might be your next best read.

I’ve been enjoying juvenile non-fiction quite a lot. They get all these beautifully illustrated, simplified books and I’m envious that I didn’t experience the same as a child. But now that I am older, I am able to enjoy and appreciate it more… so maybe there’s some good in that!

Today’s book was listed under juvenile non-fiction, but I think it’s a delight regardless of age!

100 Things to Know about Inventions
by Clive Gifford and Yiffy Gu (illustrator)

get it here


How do you sum up the world’s amazing inventions in just 100 words? This striking book takes on the challenge! From helicopters to fireworks, each of the carefully chosen 100 words has its own 100-word long description and quirky illustration, providing a fascinating introduction to inspiring inventions from history to the modern day. Basically, everything you need to know in a nutshell.

Along with some expected inventions, such as trains and Internet, you’ll also discover less predictable inventions that will give you a fresh perspective. With balloons and submarines, you can explore the risks some inventors had to take. Through paper and pencil imagine how such seemingly simple objects would have been groundbreaking at the time of invention; whereas some inventions, such as skates, had a very funny beginning! With a clean, contemporary design, each word occupies a page of its own. A large striking illustration neatly encapsulates the accompanying 100 words of text.


Rating: 4 out of 5.

*An advance reader’s copy was given by NetGalley and Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

This is an informative book for people who enjoy science, discovery, general knowledge and being that one person in the room that likes to tell others about facts when no one asked.

100 things to know about inventions is exactly like its name. From historical farming plows to modern-day rockets and space stations, this book introduces you to a brief history of inventions, accompanied by colourful illustrations. It works as a coffee table book or a gift too!

I liked that it covers inventions from the field of physics and chemistry to even things such as paper bags and coins. It is things like this that I take for granted, and never for a second think “I wonder what sparked that invention.” It was truly a pleasure to read.

It is a book that is suitable for younger and older readers. Most of the history was explained well, but some I had to read a couple of times. It is brief and only covers some important points, nothing too terrifying or boring.

Since I was given an ARC, I think that was why the quality of illustrations wasn’t as crisp as I hoped it would be. It isn’t the fault of the author or illustrator, but it lowered my experience of reading, especially when the illustrations act as support that enhances the joy of reading picture books. Though this isn’t reflected in my ratings, I would still like to mention it.

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