Sunday, March 28, 2010

An Uncommon History of Common Things Book Review

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 An Uncommon History of Common Things Book Review

About the Book: Sometime about 30,000 years ago, somebody stuck a sharp rock into a split stick—and presto! The axe was born. Our inquisitive species just loves tinkering, testing, and pushing the limits, and this delightfully different book is a freewheeling reference to hundreds of customs, notions, and inventions that reflect human ingenuity throughout history.

From hand tools to holidays to weapons to washing machines, An Uncommon History of Common Things features hundreds of colorful illustrations, timelines, sidebars, and more as it explores just about every subject under the sun. Who knew that indoor plumbing has been around for 4,600 years, but punctuation, capital letters, and the handy spaces between written words only date back to the Dark Ages? Or that ancient soldiers baked a kind of pizza on their shields—when they weren’t busy flying kites to frighten their foes?

Every page of this quirky compendium catalogs something fascinating, surprising, or serendipitous. A lively, incomparably browsable read for history buffs, pop culture lovers, and anyone who relishes the odd and extraordinary details hidden in the everyday, it will inform, amuse, astonish—and alter the way you think about the clever creatures we call humans.

Our Take: National Geographic wows us again with this hardcover book on some of the most interesting bits of trivia you may have ever had the pleasure to stumble upon.   I know that I'm always looking for interesting fun facts and trivia.

The first thing that strikes me about this book is the layout.  Its hardcover, as I previously mentioend, with a dust jacket.  The inside is laid out quite nicely with many illustrations and sections to make for easy and light reading.  You can tackle one item at a time or entire chapters.  The book is divide up into various sections with info about foods, American culture, signs and much more.   Do you know the true origins of football?  How about what witch hazel does?  Did you know that velcro isn't actually allowed to be called velcro?  Did you know that a form of cereal has been consumed for breakfast for over 17,000 years?!   I'm telling you, this book is absolutely amazing!

This quirky and interesting book is chock-full of juicy tidbits and fun knowlege that will make any history buff jump for joy!   We HIGHLY recommend picking this one up immediately.  Its great for any teacher of all ages or anyone interested in trivia!

How to Buy: or the National Geographic Website

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