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I Wonder Why Countries Fly Flags: And Other Questions About People and Places    by Philip Steele order for
I Wonder Why Countries Fly Flags
by Philip Steele
Order:  USA  Can
Kingfisher, 2013 (2013)
Hardcover, Softcover
* *   Reviewed by Bob Walch

This picture book contains over thirty questions about various cultures and countries. There is apparently no rhyme or reason to these questions but they are all interesting and the answers will give the reader a little bit of new knowledge about a given country.

The quirky questions range from 'Who paints pictures on trucks?' (Truck drivers in Afghanistan), and 'Who lives in longhouses?' (People in Borneo) to 'Which is the world's biggest city?' (Tokyo with 32.5 million residents) and 'Which country has more than 800 languages?' (Papua New Guinea).

Along with the questions and answers and the colorful drawings that accompany them, you'll also discover small boxes with cartoons that contain other tidbits about various cultures.

You'll discover that 'The earliest soccerlike game was called zuqiu. It was played 2,400 years ago in ancient China' and that 'Hindu brides decorate their skin with beautiful, lacy patterns for their wedding day. They use a reddish-brown dye called henna.'

Although the randomness of the questions and how they are presented in this book is a bit odd, it still is a fun way of exploring other cultures. The only problem with the book is that after reading it once or twice, the youngster might be done with it. An excellent selection for a school library or classroom, although the paperback isn't that expensive, it might not be as cost effective for home use.

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