Planet Party by Iain Gately Pocket Books $115 On almost every day of the year, somewhere in the world, a festival is taking place. On the last Tuesday of January in the Shetland Islands, locals celebrate the New Year by dressing up, getting drunk and setting fire to a Viking longship. In Trinidad in Carnival week, almost the entire population puts on extravagant disguises and takes part in 48 hours of non-stop calypso singing, dancing and rum drinking. Iain Gately has taken a tour of these and other world festivals in this captivating book. The text is as lively as its subject, but not without flaws. The title Planet Party is inappropriate - of the 12 essays, six are on European festivals, with one in India included to represent the whole of Asia. While the descriptions are fine, analysis of the common threads of human celebrations is thin. Similarities obviously emerge and would have made fascinating material.