DISCLAIMER: I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
There's few things I enjoy more than sitting down with some friends and playing table top games. From the classics of Monopoly, Scrabble, Chess, and Sorry, to the modern successes of Catan and Ticket to Ride, the sheer joy these games provide is amazing. When I saw this book was being written, I knew I had to get my hands on it.
Donovan does a splendid job at taking each chapter and chronicling the history of a particular game that has stood the test of time. Starting the book off with chess was a brilliant move because the game itself is so popular but also, something unbeknownst to me prior to reading this book, its history is so rich and full of controversy and change. Immediately the reader is hooked and Donovan never lets go. Backgammon, Monopoly, the Game of Life - all of the board game successes that have passed from generation to generation are here, and there's so much fun history to learn from this book. Donovan writes in such a casual, easy way that it feels like you are actually sitting down to play a game together and he looks up at you and says, "Oh, by the way, did you know..." and the book writes itself.
People of all age, gender, and gaming experience will love this book. My brother is an avid gamer, and I have already planned to purchase a copy for him for his upcoming birthday. By knowing the history of how these games came to be, one can truly appreciate the richness, depth, and complexity they bring to the table. This book is a home run in about every facet. Well-written, full of interesting topics, and never gets tired or boring, It's All a Game is a smash hit. Highly recommended.
I love to read and to discuss books. My preferred genre is sci-fi but I like to read mostly anything.