Germany, the Land


32 pages
Contains Photos, Illustrations, Index
ISBN 0-7787-9372-9
DDC j943




Reviewed by Lisa Arsenault

Lisa Arsenault is an elementary-school teacher in Ajax, Ontario.


Germany is the latest featured country in Bobbie Kalman’s The Lands,
Peoples, and Cultures series. Each book comprises several short
chapters, a glossary, and an index page, with photographs, maps, and
diagrams accompanying the text.

Germany’s rich cultural tradition is addressed in Germany, the
Culture. Festivals such as the famous Oberammergau Passion Play and
equally famous clothing styles (such as lederhosen and the dirndl) are
described. Famous German painters, musicians, and writers receive
thumbnail biographies. Cathedrals, castles, and the more modern
architectural gems of the Bauhaus are featured.

A helpful sidebar gives the reader “facts at a glance” in Germany,
the Land. Germany’s unique geographical position at the centre of
Europe is addressed. Topography, weather conditions, land usage, major
cities, transportation, industry, and anti-pollution measures are
described. The effects of two world wars, the division of the country
into eastern and western blocs, the recent reunification, regional
differences, and immigration are discussed.

Germany, the People provides an overview of Germany’s history from
1200 B.C. to the present, concentrating on the upheavals of the 20th
century. Life in the cities, village life, festivals and celebrations,
regional customs and cuisine, and leisure activities are described. A
day in the life of a young German girl lends a personal angle and
incorporates many of the elements described in the foregoing pages.

These are informative and interesting books. The style is geared to
young readers, but the content is of interest to anyone wishing to learn
more about the world. The sidebars have been carefully chosen for their
intrinsic interest and include legends, recipes, and fascinatingly
obscure items. Similar care has also been given to the choice of
illustrative material. It should be noted that each book addresses
Nazism, and the atrocities of the Hitler regime are not sugar-coated.
Highly recommended.


Lane, Kathryn., “Germany, the Land,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed July 25, 2024,