An engaging introduction to the mind-boggling monument that has held tight to its secrets for thousands of years.
Manning and Granström have assembled what is considered known about Stonehenge, plus a few shots in the not-complete dark, into this handsome and atmospheric picture book. That so little is understood about the site adds much to its allure. It is yet another wonder how the jacket flap copy gets away with “The mysteries and secrets of Stonehenge—revealed!” since the authors are careful to emphasize how little is still known. When they move into the realm of conjecture, they stick to very plausible ideas: how the stones may have been moved, suggestions relative to its orientation and its possible relationship with nearby Durrington Walls. The artwork has a lively energy—the hand is freer than David Macaulay’s or Mitsumasa Anno’s, but it conveys the same sense of time and place—and the text is straightforward without detracting from the stones’ delightfully secretive qualities. Indeed, one of the great pleasures of this book is in imparting the fun of having these unknowns, and maybe unknowable, among us, to let the imagination work overtime trying to simply drink it all in.
If we can no longer wander among the stones, which is a crying shame, this is a good start at getting into the circle’s perplexity. (Informational picture book. 7-11)