Gr 4–8—Each title begins with a focused crash course, allowing readers to dive in without much prior knowledge of the featured epoch. The remainder of each volume describes innovations that occurred in the days and decades following. Though the series' title suggests otherwise, not all of the changes were favorable. Without minimizing relevant horrors, the authors point out how tragedy inspired revolutions in arts and the media and led to positive change (in most cases) via new technologies and the reworking of government policies. Each volume is packed with illustrations. VERDICT Solid purchases.