Part of the "Global Cities" series, this colorful book chock full of information starts by pointing out that, as of 2007, more of the world's people live in urban areas than in rural, a flip from the way our planet's population has lived until now. Such knowledge adds urgency to the need to learn about cities and how they function. What's it like to live in a city? How is a city managed? What are the problems endemic to large groups of people living in close quarters? Touching on homelessness, overpopulation, people from disparate cultures, traffic, crime, pollution, and even garbage collection, the author highlights crucial issues facing all cities. In addition, the history and economy of the city are well laid out. Of greatest interest are the numerous sidebars from local residents explaining in their own words topics that bring the city closer to the reader, revealing a collection of individuals who make up a larger community. Part travel guide, part textbook, and part human interest story, this series gives a colorful kaleidoscope rendering of some of the largest cities in the world. Very well indexed, there is also a glossary and list of interesting references, making it a useful research tool.