When American children think about toys, they most likely think about video games and other expensive electronics, but children in other countries often play with simple cars and dolls, which can be just as much fun. The toys shown in this volume come from a variety of countries, but they are all hand-made artisan creations. Most of the toys shown resemble figurines and souvenirs more than toys, but the craft instructions to create these simple toys are appropriate. Children can make 6 toys as discussed in this title, like a robot, monster, nodding tiger, puppet, and more. These are not simple story time crafts, but rather toys that children can make on a long rainy day, or as a weekend project. Even though this book tries to be multicultural and educational, it works more as a craft book. Larger libraries with popular crafting collections will more likely have room for this book. Reviewer: Tiffany Erickson
School Library Journal
Gr 3-8–Read, make. Read, make. That’s the pattern for these colorful and interesting books that mix cultural history with wonderful do-it-yourself projects from all over the world. A spread on the history, significance, and use of a type of item–say, a puppet–is immediately followed by instructions for making one. Materials include items from the recycling bin (plastic bottles, boxes) and the yard (twigs), but also specialty craft supplies such as air-drying clay and laminated cotton fabric. Techniques are mostly simple–cutting, gluing, painting–but some projects require sewing or papier mâché, and crafters will need help from an adult.