Jess's Reviews > The Museum Book: A Guide to Strange and Wonderful Collections

The Museum Book by Jan Mark
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's review
Feb 12, 2008

really liked it
bookshelves: non-fiction, juv, museums
Read in February, 2008

Large format, with fun illustrations and compelling text, this is a great look at the history and purpose of museums. I'm a huge museum geek, so I loved the run-down of how museums came to be, what kinds of museums exist, and how they've changed over time. The illustrations take up maybe half the space, and compliment the text while still being their own interesting thing, and the text is in several chapters, with a glossary and index. The book ends on a great note, talking about how people often run out of space in museums, and much of the collection in kept in storage, but we each have our own, personal museum - our memory. "Remember Mnemosyne the Titan, mother of the Muses? She was memory. Memory is your museum, your cabinet of curiosities, your Wunderkammer. It will never be full; there is always room for something new and strange and marvelous. It will never need dusting" (p. 48). It's all in that same tone - chatty and informative, not talking down but making sure to explain things. I would guess upper elementary/middle school as a good target audience, or any good reader who's interested in museums or needs a good introduction to them.

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