Adam Frost (text), Gemma Correll (illustrator), Splat the Fake Fact, Bloomsbury Publishing, May 2018, 160 pp., $14.99 (pbk), ISBN: 9781408889503
In these days of “fake news” it’s more important than ever for children to develop critical thinking and analytical skills. Splat the Fake Fact helps with this in a fun, entertaining and sometimes slightly gross way.
Graphic novel style line drawings present puzzles, quizzes, and load of humour on every page.
The assortment of facts covers a broad range of topics. Art, history, animals, stunts, sports, geography, fairgrounds and world records are just some on offer. Each presents a number of “facts”, and the reader is challenged to work out which one is completely made up. This is actually much harder than you’d think because the author has dug up some very outlandish and obscure facts!
Sometimes answers or clues are provided in code form, which adds an extra level to the book as readers get to decode the answer using the keys supplied. However, sometimes it’s simply left up to the reader’s general knowledge, best guess, or initiative to make their own choice as to which “fact” is fake. Answers are given on the next page, or at the back of the book.
Readers are encouraged to write in the book – Cross them out, shout at them, fart on them! Do whatever it takes to turn this book into a normal fact book – which makes it best suited to individual ownership rather than library stock.
This is one to reel in reluctant readers, as well as lovers of trivia, puzzles and humour. It would be a great addition to rainy days and long car trips.
Reviewed by Julie Murphy