Brief Histories of Everyday Objects by Andy Warner is a hilarious non-fiction graphic novel that describes how many of the items that we take for granted have interesting, unusual, and sometimes downright silly origins. The author guessed when it came down to deciding what people looked like and what they said (unless they were quoted), but the facts are all true! Once you read this book, you will never look at the things you use on a daily basis in the same way again. The next time you go to a party, you’ll be able to tell people about the story behind the pull tabs on their soda cans.
Did you know that the woman who invented flat-bottomed paper grocery bags had to fight for her right to the patent when a man tried to steal it? She became the first woman to win a patent lawsuit.
Did you know that Earl Tupper invented Tupperware, but Brownie Wise made it sell? In fact, she was so successful that she became the face of the product. This greatly angered Mr. Tupper, so he fired her, sold the company, and purchased an island where he lived for the rest of his life.
Did you know that postcards were the results of an elaborate prank?
Did you know that roller skates were first invented in 1760 when John Joseph Merlin, a prolific inventor, built a pair so he could show off at a masquerade?
Genre: Non-fiction graphic novel
Setting: All over the world, throughout different times
Is this good for a book club? Only if the book club is interested in discussing previously unknown facts regarding everyday things.
How long is the book? 206 pages
Objectionable content? Barely. There are some references to bathing, bras, excrement, and violence, but there is nothing explicit. There are some illustrations of women wearing sports bras.
Can children read this? The humor and information are enjoyable for all ages, as long as they have a good vocabulary.
Who would like this? Anyone with a good sense of humor and a good appreciation for learning about how everyday objects were created.
Rating: Five stars