There’s at least some stuff you know for a fact, right? So, it follows that people who disagree with the facts you’ve learned must be wrong…except, it’s often the case that both of you are way off.
Some information, like whether or not aliens treat Earth as a kind of theme park, is impossible to verify at the present time. Other facts, though, have been
- Gotten wrong in some famous book and everyone just went with it (mussels that don’t open during cooking aren’t necessarily spoiled)
- Simplified for educational purposes (there are at least fives states of matter, but most people only know about solid, liquid and gas)
- Are unpopular for ideological reasons (Hitler, Stalin and Mussolini were all nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize).
Some of the 200-plus widely-held myths debunked in this book may be of some kind of relevance to you, but most of them are more likely to come in handy in trivia contests and at dinner parties. At times, the author uses what are basically loopholes in order to challenge conventional thinking and share some interesting information. Mount Everest, for instance, is certainly the highest peak in the world, but not the tallest: that distinction goes to a mountain that starts out on the seabed.
A few other unknown facts he examines are also so obscure that most people simply will not care about them, or may be things you already know. If you’re a curious sort of person, though, or you’re looking for a gift, or maybe something to decorate a waiting room or coffee table, the hardcover version is worth the price.
Each topic takes up one or two pages, which is just long enough to cover the topic without getting boring. This format is also perfect for when you want to waste a few minutes without committing to a longer book, which means that younger readers will also appreciate it.