Reviews for Playing the Spoons and Other Curious Instruments

Booklist Reviews 2010 December #1
Each volume in the Culture in Action series offers an overview of a topic, historical background information where appropriate, a colorful illustration on nearly every page, and three single-page activities (one music-related, one art-related, and one performance activity). Playing the Spoons and Other Curious Instruments introduces musical instruments from around the world that may be unfamiliar to children. The target audience for the series seems to vary somewhat, with one volume inviting readers to "feel your sides ache from laughing at lovable clowns" and another asking them to consider "the threat of Communism" as a reason for the rise of science fiction in the U.S. in the 1950s. Illustrated mainly with clearly reproduced photos, the books sometimes feature eye-catching photos on their covers as well. Time lines, glossaries, and bibliographies are appended. Aimed at a global market, the books cover their subjects broadly, but the brief lists of books, websites, and places to visit offer choices accessible to North American readers. Short, competently written overviews of a wide range of subjects. Copyright 2010 Booklist Reviews.