Gr 4-7-These lively and visually appealing overviews are simple enough to be used by youngsters who have no background knowledge of either of these cities, and provide enough information to establish a decent understanding of the subjects. Both books have double-page topic treatments that include full-color photographs, reproductions, and lifelike illustrations. Many of the subjects focus on daily life, such as the arts, religion, school, and slavery. While both titles touch on modern events such as the Tiananmen Square shootings in 1989 and a modern-day center established to collect ancient manuscripts in Timbuktu, the majority of these texts focus on the distant past.-Kristen Oravec, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Strongsville, OH Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
In the Cities Through Time series, a grab bag chronology of the customs, culture, history, and traditions of Beijing. This examination begins during prehistoric times when Homo erectus inhabited the area, and concludes with a portrait of a contemporary city under Communist rule. The book is divided into sections on ancient, imperial, and modern Beijing, and the author presents readers with small, judiciously picked topics of interest to children, such as "A Slave's Life," and "Kites and Games." There is not enough basic background information and connective material to incorporate these engaging tidbits into a larger historical whole, nor are there helpful maps. Of limited use. (chronology, further reading, index) (Nonfiction. 9-13)