A Quick History of Money

From Bartering to Bitcoin

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Pub Date 20 Jul 2021 | Archive Date 03 Aug 2021

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Why is a $5 note worth $5? Where do coins come from? What do banks actually do? All this and so much more is answered in A Quick History of Money, a crash course from cash cows to cryptocurrency.
Money might sound all grown-up and serious, but the history of buying, selling, saving, and stealing is full of crazy stories and unbelievable facts. A Quick History of Money is here to show you the silly side, as well as give you the lowdown on the important stuff like interest, stocks and shares, and wealth inequality.
You will discover: How the earliest societies got by without a penny in their pockets.Why gold gets all the glory.How the first banks started making money from money.Who invented the first banknotes and the concept of ‘fiat’ money.The craziest money-making cons of all time, from shaving coins to selling the Eiffel Tower… twice.How wealth is measured in the modern-day.History’s most expensive money mistakes.What money might look like in the future.Great tips for slick saving and smart spending. Plus, read about the world’s weirdest wonga, from the four-tonne stones used as currency on the island of Yap, to teacups and sea shells in ancient Asia, to beaver pelts in colonial Canada. Learn how hyperinflation leads to some mind-blowing money math, like the Bitcoins used to buy two pizzas in 2010 that would be worth over $90 million today. Test your knowhow with a quiz at the back of the book.
Packed with facts and jokes, the latest in the Quick Histories series takes us on a chronological tour from cashless societies to… cashless societies, proving that while it might make the world go round, money sure is funny.
Why is a $5 note worth $5? Where do coins come from? What do banks actually do? All this and so much more is answered in A Quick History of Money, a crash course from cash cows to cryptocurrency.

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ISBN 9780711262751
PRICE $14.99 (USD)

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Average rating from 11 members

Featured Reviews

A really good book for the school library that discusses all aspects of currency – why we have it, what it's looked like throughout history, and why it's important to know the different types of debit interest, etc. It has a great eye for the trivial-seeming (the ridged edge, milling, on coins was introduced under the watch of Sir Isaac Newton to stop criminals clipping fragments of the coins off for their own precious metal supplies), and that comes across with the wacky cartoons that pepper each and every page. It's also extremely narrative, with a great flow from one double-paged spread to the next, however forced the link might appear. I hope there are enough educators out there with enough cowrie shells, sorry, 3 Euro coins, sorry, plastic banknotes, to make it a great success. Four and a half stars.

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This is a solid enrichment book for older elementary kids, though I confess I learned quite a bit too! With bright, fun pictures and clear text broken into manageable chunks, this should engage students nicely. I really appreciated that many diverse aspects of money and trade were broken down in historical and social contexts across very diverse cultures. It would make a great addition to a classroom library! Many thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review!

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An excellent source for explanations about all things money. From the early days of gifting and bartering through to the rather confusing bitcoin. Topics such as interest, inflation, stocks and the rise of credit cards are all covered in ways that kids from 8-12 will not only understand, but enjoy.

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Un'introduzione chiarissima, piacevole e brillante ai principi base dell'economia, attraverso una storia del denaro nei millenni. E' sconcertante che in Italia non ci diano a scuola le basi principali per capire come si muove il denaro, quali sono le dinamiche che lo governano, e permetterci scelte (e magari investimenti) più ragionati. Quindi ben vengano libri come questo, dedicati ai bambini ma utilissimi anche a certi adulti (come me XD).

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I really love this series! They’re perfect introductions to the topics in the title, easy to understand, a little funny, with lots of information. Even as an adult I was able to learn something, I didn’t know a lot of the history of early coins and thought it was funny to find out that one Greek city-state had celery on the face of its coins.

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Having read “A Quick history of math” by this same author earlier, my expectations from this book were sky-high. And it doesn’t disappoint at all. From coins to cards, physical currency to crypto-currency, minting to spending to saving… everything that can possibly connected to money has been covered in this book. It even covers economics concepts such as inflation and recession. The overall journey of financial trade from basic barters to today’s computerised transactions is amazing to read. The book even provides some smart savings and money management tips at the end. You might think that a topic such as money is boring or heavy but it’s covered in such a light-hearted and easy-to-understand way that it will appeal to preteens and teens. The hilarious illustrations are the icing on the cake. This will be an enlightening read not only for children but also adults. Recommended not just to schools and libraries but also to families that wants to teach smart money handling to their youngsters. Thank you, NetGalley and Quarto Publishing Group, for the ARC of the book in exchange for an honest review.

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The information is relevant and presented in a fun memorable way (There are as many millionaires in the world as people who live in Spain. This is the kid of fact that kids love!). The explanations of complicated concepts like Bitcoin, inequality, and the financial crisis were accessible for children, and the cartoony illustrations and bonus features like a quiz and timeline are other pathways to engage readers. I'll recommend to fans of the popular Who Was? series. Thank you to NetGalley and Quarto Publishing Group, for the ARC of the book in exchange for an honest review.

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Great book. Illustrations were awesome. I learned a ton on the topic that I never read before. Super fun.

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Who knew that there was so much to know about money?! I enjoyed the illustrations and pictures in this book. It was engaging and informative.

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