Alphin, Elaine Marie. Irons. Carolrhoda, 1998. ISBN 1-57505-238-5. $22.60. 48 pp.” 4-6 NF Reviewed by Mary Warner Irons is a wonderfully informative and entertaining book. Alphin, the author of Toasters (also part of the Household History Series), has once again taken a mundane household item that is often taken for granted and given it the credit it deserves. Irons covers the history and purpose of ironing and the evolution of tools used to perform this chore. The heat and pressure of ironing kill parasites and bacteria, keeping clothes fresh and healthy. Irons have taken many forms, from cast iron irons (or sad irons, called this because sad means heavy) that were heated on top of a blazing cookstove, to the sleek, lightweight aluminum electric steam irons of today. Irons is a wonderful book, a timely reminder of the care our ancestors took in looking after their homes and families. This book also provides a fun activity that involves using an iron. This could be done as a family or in the classroom. Alphin is careful to cover safety precautions and proper handling of the iron. Everyone will enjoy Irons. It may makes readers grateful for all the things that make daily life a little bit easier.
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