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Everything You Need to Know About the World    by Simon Eliot order for
Everything You Need to Know About the World
by Simon Eliot
Order:  USA  Can
Raincoast, 2006 (2006)
* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

On the back cover of Everything You Need to Know About the World, Simon Eliot tells us 'You are what you know. Welcome to my world.' Inside, readers take a delightfully irreverent ramble - enlivened by amusing line drawings and annotations (e.g. 'most of the classical composers have now decomposed') - through the young author's stream of consciousness.

Simon Eliot begins with a cobweb, moves from there to the world wide web; intestinal stuff (don't ask!); a history of toilet paper and of toothpaste; heroic figures from Aladdin to Achilles; famous journeys; the invention of paper and the wheel (and skateboards); space junk; Old Dudes You Need to Hear About (like Socrates and Darwin); composers, painters and writers; the wettest and driest places in the world; dangerous animals (mostly in Australia); discoveries made by accident; inventions of edibles like ice cream; feline and canine trivia; common sayings, and much more.

The author includes his own words of wisdom such as 'Eat crap, feel crap' as well as classic quotes like Montezuma's description of chocolate as 'The divine drink which builds up resistance and fights fatigue' (just had to include that one). His engaging book was a finalist in the New Zealand Post Children's Book Awards.

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