12. 50 Underwear Questions: A Bare All History by Tanya Lloyd Kyi

50 Underwear Questions: A Bare All History by Tanya Lloyd Kyi. Illustrated by Ross Kinnaird (Canada) - (US)
50 Questions Series

Pages: 116
Ages: 8+
Finished: Jan. 11, 2012
First Published: Jul. 7, 2011
Publisher: Annick Press
Genre: children, humour, history, Canadian author
Rating:  4/5

First sentence:
When you think of mummified bodies, you might picture their forms wrapped in long, Halloween-style linen strips.

Acquired: Received an egalley from Annick Press through NetGalley..

Reason for Reading: I love social history and I thought the history of this topic geared towards children could prove to be quite funny.

Publisher's Summary: "You are what you wear (underneath)!

Most of us take our underwear for granted, but throughout history our undies have revealed a lot about who we are (king or peasant), how we work (in fields or factories) or the shapes we value (manly calves or tiny waists).

The third book in Annick's 50 Questions series tackles questions such as "What's that smell?" (Medieval Europeans thought bathing made you sick) and "Did boxers arrive in the Nick of time?" (When blue jean model Nick Kamen stepped out of his denims to reveal his boxers, sales of the underwear soared.)

Underwear has played a role in ancient crusades, city sieges and even modern economic predictions. Obviously, it's time to uncover the facts about everything from loincloths and T-shirts to bloomers and lingerie. Young readers will laugh their pants off at the accompanying cartoons and get the bare, but fascinating, facts about the history of our unmentionables. "

A very colourful book written on blue pages which have the appearance of fabric.  This is a bright bold, attractive book that grabs your attention right away; the artwork is cartoonish and silly, some characters even felt a bit Simpsons-ish too me.  The information is highly interesting and unless you read a wide variety of historical fiction through all time eras, you are going to learn something here.  The book starts off with Adam & Eve and the proverbial fig leaf and Stone Age Men then goes forward through time reaching modern day boxer briefs and thongs.  To really enjoy the history and the humour of the history the reader must be mature enough to not be continuously giggling at the words "breast", "genitals", "private parts" and "family jewels".  Otherwise there will be just too much giggling to appreciate the books secret information that we've always wondered but never had anyone to ask before.  The pictures are clean, there is no nudity or copious amounts of flesh.  The book is family friendly as long as you don't mind seeing people in their underwear and remember, back in the day underwear was more modest than modern day's outerwear!   A really fun book that's sure to add not only laughter but real insight into past generations and what they thought of and used underwear for compared to modern society.  A great read for anyone interested in "how did they live back then?".


  1. I have a couple of the others in this series which I like but are a little old for my kids. I thought they would like this one a lot more (because of the giggling!), but I heard there are strippers in it. Is that true?

  2. No, there aren't any strippers. There is nothing "adult" in the book.


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