Friday: You Wouldn’t Want to be Sick in the 16th Century

I don’t know about you, but January and February have been chock-full of colds, coughs, sore throats, vomit, stomach aches and the occasional rash. Seems we just recover from one nasty bug and another one is slowly crawling up our leg. It could be worse, though. We could be sick in the 16th Century and encounter all of the grotesque ways in which doctors of the time attempted to cure unsuspecting folks. Who knew there was such a bevy of repulsive health care practices? Well, apparently Kathryn Senior knew, and wrote her book, You Wouldn’t Want to be Sick in the 16th Century: Diseases You’d Rather Not Catch – a veritable encyclopedia of disgusting medical facts that is just one in a series of You Wouldn’t Want to be… children’s books available. We’ve read You Wouldn’t Want to be a Pyramid Builder (severe rope burn), You Wouldn’t Want to be a Greek Athlete (athlete’s foot galore) and You Wouldn’t Want to be  Salem Witch (is it getting hot in here or is it just me?)…and now we can add the 16th Century to our braintrust of oogey facts. This book series is definitely not for the squeamish and definitely for an older set of kids, but if you’re ready for a richly revolting romp back in time, these books are for you! Cough Cough. Oh, no, not again…

Thursday: Sam’s Sandwich

Sweet little Sam…making a sandwich for his sister. What a nice little boy. Sliced tomato. Pastrami. A little hard-boiled egg. What a delicious little morsel for his sister to bite into. But what the reader will soon find out in this delectably awful pop-up book by David Pelham, is that sweet little Sam has hidden some additional “treats” between the layers. Like ants. And a big juicy slug. And don’t forget the crunchy black fly. Yum. We’ve read this book probably 2,345 times and still my children squeal with delight as each horrific flap is lifted. And the book is even shaped like a sandwich! Sam’s Sandwich is, hand-down, a family favorite. And it gives new meaning to ordering a sandwich with everything on it.