Two intrepid librarians

Two intrepid librarians review the best nonfiction books for children

Monday, December 8, 2014

The History of Money: from bartering to banking by Martin Jenkins

The History of Money: from bartering to banking
Written by Martin Jenkins; Illustrated by Satoshi Kitamura
Candlewick Press. 2014
ISBN: 9780763667634
Grades 7-12
I borrowed a copy of this book from my local public library to write this review.

The History of Money is a great introduction to the history of how we came to use money as our means of buying and selling goods. Using a very informal style, Jenkins' (The Emperor's Egg) tome takes readers from the days of bartering up to the evolution of buying and selling using coins to paper money. He does an excellent job explaining inflation and how banks work.

Accompanying the content are the colorful cartoon drawings by Satoshi Kitamura. They offer that important visual element that helps readers comprehend the text.

Perhaps in the end the most important fact about money—and the hardest thing to understand about it—is that it exists only because people believe in it. It’s not a physical thing—even though that’s how we tend to think of it, as banknotes and coins, or cash.

Back matter includes author's note, bibliography, and index.

The History of Money may look like an informational book for elementary grades, yet the content would find an audience in middle and high school as well.

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