I’m a sucker for trivia, and Listomania is on my top-ten list of fascinating facts books. As the title reveals, the book is loaded with fun tidbits of information (over 1,200 of them) that are organized by lists. Most items or lists are explained in a short paragraph, and every list is playfully and boldly illustrated.
My top 10 favorite examples:
- 8 Awful Jobs in History (sperm collector, nitpicker…)
- 14 Cool Things to View on Google Earth (giant pink bunny in Italy, Mount Everest…)
- 10 Places on Earth that are Still Unexplored (Makira Forests in Madagascar, Lake Vostok in Antarctica…)
- 9 Extreme Abodes (house on a volcano, airplanes converted into houses…)
- 14 Beauty Queen Scandals (Spain’s Miss Universe chucked her crown out of a window, Miss England punched another beauty queen…)
- 18 Things that Fell From the Sky (colored rain, cows…)
- 8 Dastardly Ponzi Schemes (Charles Ponzi, Bernie Madoff…)
- 7 Things Made from Insects (red dye from ground-up cochineal bugs, antibiotic herbal remedy from cockroach brains…)
- 14 Unexpected Odds (117:1 that you’ll fly with a drunk pilot, 6,250:1 that you’ll be struck by lightning…)
- 10 Best Countries to be a Geek (US, Belgium…)
Listomania: A World of Fascinating Facts in Graphic Detail
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High-end printers began decorating the edges of books as the craft developed, including dyeing and gilding the edges, but in the 17th century, artisans began creating fore-edge paintings that could only be seen when books were fanned. Below is another example:
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