If You Were Me and Lived in China…Italy…Egypt: A Child’s Introduction to Cultures Around the World by Carole P. Roman, Author and Kelsea Wierenga, Illustrator

Reviewed by Teri Davis

If You Were Me and Lived in ItalyIf You Were Me and Lived in ChinaIf You Were Me and Lived in EgyptHow does anyone prepare to visit another country? Most travelers quickly have discovered that the experience is more enjoyable when you know what to expect. Immersing yourself in any place with another language and culture is the best way to understand others. How do you prepare for the multiple aspects that no one source can explain?

With various mannerisms, inferences, and customs, how does anyone learn about successfully integrating themselves in another place with a different language, food, dress and a life that is completely different from your usual home?

Former social studies teacher, Carole P. Roman, recognized this need and created this series for children of all ages, even though the intended audience is for those between the ages of four and eight. These books beautifully introduce the country first through geography by looking at the shape of each nation and then a world map showing how it relates to its neighboring countries.

The next focus is the capital city, its name, and sites, sounds, and even smells including name changes and describing the uniqueness of each.
Family life as parents and children is then both written and illustrated, demonstrating the traditional cultural homes, along with their common name. Included also in these short gems of books are a brief discussion of the money system and the typical and traditional food with illustrations. The recreational sports as well as the schools and how they are different including the school systems.

Focusing on the popular tourist attractions are highlighted as well as a little of the history. Also, a brief overview of the major holidays is also included to let the reader know what to expect during these celebrations.
Also included in each book is a short glossary including pronunciations for each country.

These are the perfect books to read before visiting a foreign country. With the multiple illustrations, every reader would know more how to dress and act when visiting the places of which many of us are ignorant. Carole P. Roman is a former social studies teacher who now utilizes her years of experience by creating this excellent series. Each page perfectly coordinates words with the colorful illustrations for a better understanding of each concept. The illustrations mix photographs inside various drawings.

Previous books in this series visited the countries of Australia, France, Greece, India, Hungary, Kenya, Mexico, Norway, Peru, Portugal, Russia, Scotland, South Korea, and Turkey. These colorful, educational, informative and entertaining books should be read whether you are planning a trip or dreaming of a future adventure. They are wonderful additions to everyone’s home library for all ages.