________________ CM . . . . Volume XI Number 12 . . . .February 18, 2005


Money, Money, Money: Where It Comes From, How to Save It, Spend It and Make It.

Eve Drobot. Illustrated by Claudia Dávila.
Toronto, ON: Maple Tree Press, 2004.
96 pp., pbk. & cl., $19.95 (pbk.), $29.95 (cl.).
ISBN 1-897066-11-2 (pbk.), ISBN 1-897066-10-4 (cl.).

Subject Heading:
Money-Juvenile literature.

Grades 4-8 / Ages 9-13.

Review by Linda Ludke.

***1/2 /4



Money comes in different shapes. Most of the people in the world use either bills or coins, stamped and marked by governments to say what each piece is worth. But until recently, in some faraway places such as South Pacific or parts of Africa, you could use shells or beads. The Yap Islanders in the Pacific still trade great big stones with holes in the middle. The stones weigh as much as a compact car - not exactly the sort of money that would fit in a wallet.


This well-researched book traces the history of money from Greek coins to debit cards. Chapters explore topics such as how money is made, currency around the world, counterfeiters and infamous bank robbers. Also included is practical information on saving and investing.

     Money Money Money is an updated and expanded version of Drobot's Everything You Wanted to Know about Money (OWL Books, 1987). The earlier book ended with a look towards the future: "There is something new just around the corner. It's sometimes known as a "point of sale card." But it's most commonly called a debit card ... Computers are changing the way we use money in many different ways." In the 17 years since, the predictions have come true, and chapters such as "Electronic Money" reflect these changes with information about how ATMs work, Internet money scams, and tips on preventing identity theft.

     Compared to the first edition, this title is much more visually appealing. Claudia Davila's colourful cartoon illustrations enliven the text. Many photographs are also included, such as those of Babylonian clay tablets, 18th century American tobacco certificates, and a close up of the controversial 1954 Canadian one-dollar bill that supposedly hid the face of a devil in the Queen's hair.

     Trivia and interesting facts are highlighted in "Check it Out" sidebars. "Money Myths" describes superstitions such as "you will always have money if you keep a bent silver coin in your pocket. But you have to remember to take it out every new moon and spit on it."

     As in the earlier book, the final chapter reflects on the money of the future. Readers will be intrigued by the ideas of credit cards that only work when they recognize their owners' voices, and ATMs that use iris-scanning devices.

     Adding this informative title to your collection would be money well spent.

Highly Recommended.

Linda Ludke is a librarian in London, ON.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

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