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Children's LiteratureBolivia is known as South America's highest country since much of the country sits high in the Andes mountains. Its capital, La Paz, is the world's highest city, at more than two miles above sea level. Controlled first by the Incans and then by Spain, Bolivia has long suffered political instability and unrest. The country gained independence from Spain in 1825, but has had as many as 200 coups and revolutions since then. Economic development has been sluggish, too, and the country remains one of the poorest in Latin America. Export of illegal cocaine, produced from coca plants, remains a challenge to the government. A diverse country culturally, Bolivia has three official languages: Spanish, Aymara and Quechua, reflecting the fact that as many as eighty percent of Bolivians claim some native American ancestry. This book, one of twelve in the "Discovering South America" series, includes a calendar of Bolivian festivals, recipes, glossary, chronology, index, and list of additional resources. A section on project and report ideas could easily be used in the classroom to augment geography studies. 2004, Mason Crest Publishers, Ages 8 to 12.
— Valerie O. Patterson