All of the topics addressed in the Understanding World History series are incredibly complicated issues, the nuances of which take an expert to truly appreciate. Nevertheless, as all of these complex conversations are both part of typical high school and college curricula and also inform current events, a well-informed citizen will need some grasp of these topics. The Understanding World History series is designed to be such an informational source. While not exhaustiveeach is less than one hundred pages, which includes a foreword, a basic timeline, an introduction, five chapters, source notes, a list of important figures, a “For Further Research” section, and an indexeach text is designed to be a basic introduction to significant global concerns. Historical and political resource books are rarely a barrel of laughs, and this series is no exception, but in terms of illustrating basic concepts in a straightforward manner that does not talk down to the intended teen audience, this series does a reasonable job. Short sections, photographs, illustrations, maps, and other supplemental bits of information break up the volumes so that readers can manage the sometimes intense material in short bursts. (Understanding World History) Reviewer: Jennifer M. Miskec; Ages 12 to 18.