Who Made That? uncovers the fascinating true stories behind the inventions and items that the world would be unimaginable without!
From the computer to the coat hanger, the world is simply unimaginable without certain items. Stop taking all that you enjoy for granted, step behind the curtain of boring, everyday existence, and discover a vibrant realm filled with genius and illumination. Who Made That? brings together history’s very best tales of innovation, providing endless inspiration to those who seek to launch their own revolution. With breathtaking storytelling and humorous, thought-provoking illustrations, Who Made That? brings you right inside the minds of humanity’s brightest lights, helping you make your own way in the world.
Stats to Blow Your Mind!
Learn shocking stats and facts that will surprise you, expand your knowledge, and help you impress your friends!
Astonish yourself and your friends with Stats to Blow Your Mind & Everyone Else You're Talking To. Seeing is believing with the many intriguing charts and graphs in this book. Take your learning on the road, this book is perfect for reading during family vacations or to friends at parties. This is the perfect gift for someone who loves to learn. Spark your own curiosity with the compelling statistics in Stats to Blow Your Mind & Everyone Else You're Talking To.
A History of the End of the World
The sky is falling with this complete collection of history's greatest end-of-the-world predictions!
Every time you scan the news, it feels as though the world is hurtling toward its end. While no one knows whether that is actually true or not, A History of the End of the World makes it clear that this inclination toward apocalyptic thinking has been present throughout human history, guiding some of its most powerful personages and brightest minds. Paced by frightful prophecies, catastrophic predictions, startling science, suspenseful storytelling, and epic illustrations, A History of the End of the World frames humanity’s obsession with the Armageddon like never before, providing valuable insight into our nature.
Unlock the cultural obsession with high-stakes robberies in Heist, a collection of the world’s greatest real-life break-ins. From the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum’s famous art heist to the disappearance of the Marie Antoinette watch, these 100% true stories will have you on the edge of your seat—and double checking the locks on your doors!
Have you ever watched a movie like Ocean’s Eleven and thought: “There’s no way that could ever actually happen, right?” Wrong. In the US alone, there have been dozens, if not hundreds, of heists, from bank break-ins to museum plunders. In this premium compendium, we’ll walk through the most impressive ones, diving into the details behind each case, the detectives that led the investigations, how the events unfolded, and what mysteries remain. The hardcover book will explore the top 50 incidents, including:
1. The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum Heist: In March of 1990, two men dressed up as police officers and sweet-talked their way past security at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, MA. After tying up the real guards, these men dismantled and packed up 13 works of art, loaded them onto a truck, and drove off into the night, making the 81- minute breach one of the most expensive in modern history. Today, it remains the single largest property theft in the world. 2. The Great Train Robbery: Not all heists happen in buildings. In fact, one of the most popular ones was the 1963 train robbery in which nearly 2.6 million pounds was lifted from a Royal Mail train headed to London. Using intel provided by a man on the inside dubbed The Ulsterman, the group rigged the railways traffic light system to bring the train to an extended stop, during which time, they funneled the money from one of the carriages into a waiting truck by way of a human chain. 3. The French Bank Vault Tunnelers: On the morning of July 19, 1976, workers from a safe manufacturing company were called to the Société Générale bank to fix a faulty vault door that appeared to be jammed. When they drilled into the vault and peered in to diagnose the problem, though, what they found was not a loose screw or broken hinge, but a door that has been welded shut...from the inside. Also scattering the room was a couple of wine glasses, a portable stove, and a giant tunnel system that proved to be the method of transport for thieves, who had dug their way into the bank, spent the weekend there, and left with ten million in cash. 4. D. B. Cooper’s Escapades: The subject of many conspiracy theories, D. B. Cooper (not his real name) hopped on a Boeing 727 in a trench coat and sunglasses in 1971. When the plane had reached cruising altitude, Cooper hijacked it, extorting 200,000 dollars before strapping on a parachute, jumping out of the plane, and disappearing into thin air. This “aerial heist” remains unsolved to this day and remains one of the FBI’s most frustrating open cases. 5. The Botched Crown Jewels of England Theft: Back in 1671, a man named Thomas Blood (a cool name, by any standard) decided: “Eh, I’m gonna steal the Crown Jewels.” He reached out to Talbot Edwards, the keeper of the stones, with a proposition: if you give me a private viewing of the gemstones, I’ll have my nephew marry your daughter (a nephew who, naturally, turned out to not exist). At this private viewing, Blood knocked out Talbot, smashed the jewels into pieces and threw the shards into his pockets, hoping to make a run for it. Though he didn’t manage to escape, he did manage to escape jail time: The King at the time was so amused by this failed attempt that he let Blood off scot-free.
And that’s just the start of it. Plastered with gorgeous photography and big, sleek pages, Heist looks as good as it is captivating. Crack the code of the world’s most elusive capers, from the popular tales your great grandad told you about to the ones that have been long forgotten.
Literature in 30 Seconds or Less!
Build your brain and blitz through the canon with Literature in 30 Seconds of Less!, a collection of illuminating synopses of the great works.
Bursting with illuminating synopses of humanity’s great works, you no longer have to lower your gaze when the conversation turns to the classics. Instead, you’ll be able to dazzle any dinner party, keeping everyone entirely unaware that English class was code for naptime throughout your time in school. But it’s not just about impressing others. Each of these small windows is a perfect opportunity to fuel your imagination and discover the books that speak to your soul.
Don't Hurt a Sasquatch
Imagine if forgetting your wife’s birthday was not only discouraged, but a crime? That’s one of many real-life blue laws (rules prohibiting a hyperspecific activity) that Don't Hurt a Sasquatch covers. This hilarious compendium dives into the quirkiest decrees from around the country, from Alabama’s ban on driving blindfolded to Delaware’s restriction on selling dog hair.
Every state in the country has its own set of rules, carefully designed to identify the biggest problems in its culture and correct them. Most of them are normal: don’t steal, don’t kill, don’t go somewhere you don’t belong, etc. All it takes is one weirdo to throw a wrench in that ordinary list, one unruly dude who tried to hold a salmon suspiciously or wash an alligator in a bathtub for lawmakers to step in and impose some order. What are some of these crazy laws, you ask? Take your pick:
In Connecticut, it’s illegal for a barber to hum a tune while clipping your hair.
Thinking about buying a boat house? Think again. It’s considered illegal in the state of Georgia to live on a boat for longer than a month.
Pigeons get the short end of the stick in both San Francisco, California and Venice, Italy: it’s against the law to feed them in public in both cities.
Ready to say “I do!” a third time? Hopefully, you don’t live in Kentucky: women are not allowed to marry thrice in the Southern state.
Want to surprise your loved one with a pizza? Too bad. Sending a pie to someone without their permission can result in a $500 dollar fine in Louisiana.
In Arizona, you can’t feed garbage to a pig without a permit. What constitutes as garbage, though, is up to you.
The list goes on. More interesting than the laws themselves are the histories behind each, which Blue Laws goes into in detail. Like, why can’t you roll a boulder in Boulder, Colorado? Who decided that you couldn’t catch fish with your hands in Indiana? Why are blue laws called “blue laws” and how did they come to mean “generally weird rules” (instead of their original meaning: “laws dictating what citizens can and cannot do on Sundays”)? In this informative and funny book, you will find out through a series of anecdotes, court cases, and illustrated pictures that break down just how and why these rules (most of which are still currently in effect) came to be. Good for history teachers, trivia nerds, or white elephant gift exchange participants, Don't Hurt a Sasquatch is a widely appealing book that will teach you more about how the world works than you ever wanted to know.
With Epic Jokes, windup friends and family with these long-winded, hilarious jokes!
A good joke is the same as a good story: it grabs people’s attention, and keeps it until the end. A joke has the advantage of leaving people laughing. And the laughs are bigger at the end of a well told long-winded joke. With Epic Jokes, you’ll learn classic jokes that seem to just go on and on. But have no fear, when you deliver the much anticipated punch line you’ll be the star of the party!
The Shark Handbook: Third Edition
Dive deep into the world of sharks, the most fascinating and misunderstood marine animals on the planet, in this stunning new edition of The Shark Handbook, written by Shark Week expert, Dr. Greg Skomal.
Did you know that a whale shark’s spots are as unique as a fingerprint? Or that sharks can go into a trance when flipped upside down? Or that the Megallodon’s mouth was 6 feet across? With The Shark Handbook, jump into brand new facts about these fierce sea creatures! Explore all of the orders of sharks such as:
- Ground sharks - Great white sharks - Mackerel sharks - Carpet sharks - and more!
This book features over 400 profiles of every shark in existence, from the first sharks living about 445 million years ago to the ones lurking in the ocean deep today. Starring spectacular, full-color photography that makes these jaw-dropping sharks come to life, this is the perfect gift for the shark enthusiast in your life.
Dr. Greg Skomal, PhD is an experienced aquarist and Marine Fisheries Biologist at Martha's Vineyard Fisheries, Division of Marine Fisheries, Massachusetts. He's been keeping saltwater aquariums since childhood and has shared his extensive knowledge with viewers of National Geographic, the Discovery Channel, NBC's Today, and other media.
An expert guide to the American whiskey renaissance.
In American Whiskey, Kentucky-born, internationally recognized whiskey expert Richard Thomas guides readers through the American whiskey renaissance. Featuring over 300 distinctive expressions of whiskeys that embrace both tradition and innovation this book will appeal to obsessive collectors eager to discover the next Pappy Van Winkle as well as those just starting to sample the dynamic flavor profiles of these American spirits. The history of whiskey straddles Kentucky and Tennessee, but American Whiskey proves that today exceptional whiskey is made across the country.
The Lighthouse Handbook New England and Canadian Maritimes (Fourth Edition)
Learn all the East Coast’s many lighthouses with the newly updated and expanded The Lighthouse Handbook: New England and Canadian Maritimes, 4th Edition.
Explore the living history of New England and Canadian maritime lighthouses with the original lighthouse field guide, perfect for daytrips or planning your next adventure. New England’s foremost Lighthouse’s authorityJeremy D’Entremont explores each of New England’s lighthouses and their history, as well as several Canadian lighthouses, with the trained precision of an expert in this definitive guide. The newly updated 4th edition adds new profiles including five additional Canadian lighthouses in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, more fun facts, and even visiting guides to help you plan your next lighthouse trip in style.
Jeremy D'Entremont, New England's foremost lighthouse authority, is historian for the American Lighthouse Foundation, founder of Friends of Portsmouth Harbor Lighthouses, owner and tour operator for New England Lighthouse Tours, and webmaster of New England Lighthouses: A Virtual Guide at www.newenglandlighthouses.net. He has been researching, writing, and photographing the lighthouses of New England since the mid-1980s. Jeremy has written more than a dozen books and more than 300 magazine articles in publications including Lighthouse Digest and The Keeper's Log, and he is the author of the "lighthouse" entry in the World Book Encyclopedia. His photos have been published in many magazines, including Soundings, Offshore, and Captain's Guide.
The Little Book of Zingers
You know Mark Twain, creator of the long-beloved characters Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer, but have you heard what he said about Jane Austen? The Little Book of Zingers will feature the greatest comebacks and one-liners of all time, uttered by the iconic men and women we know and love (or love to hate)!
Every generation sees its fair share of geniuses: men and women who possess boundless intellect and are capable of incredible insight. Søren Kierkegaard was such a man. Widely considered the father of existential philosophy, Kierkegaard uttered such profundities as: “If I am capable of grasping God objectively, I do not believe, but precisely because I cannot do this I must believe.” But on one truly momentous occasion, Kierkegaard made one confident and succinct statement that shook the earth: “My opponent is a glob of snot.” Kierkegaard spoke of Hans Martensen, an academic with whom he’d had a fair share of disagreements. The two often went toe-to-toe in scholarly debate, but with this dynamite zinger, Kierkegaard ended all further discussion. After all, who expects to be called a glob of snot? There’s no coming back from that. The Little Book of Zingers will explore the rich depths of crushingly hilarious salt-in-the-wound one-liners you’ve never heard that’ll make you gasp at their audacity. From the Age of Enlightenment to the Roaring Twenties to the boogie-down seventies, The Little Book of Zingers will take readers on a journey through some of history’s greatest burns, spoken by the men and women who shaped the world.
True Facts That Sound Like Bull$#*t
Prove you are the smartest schmuck in the room with 500 true trivia facts that sound absurd. These facts are so absured some might even say that they sound like bull$#*t!
Knowledge is power! Crush the competition at trivia night, or start the most interesting conversation ever with real facts that are hard to believe. This book is loaded with interesting facts that are sure to keep you wondering, "How are these even true?" while equipping you to outsmart everyone around and blow their minds. Topics include:
- Science - American Sports - History - Pop Culture - Nature
Put your game face on, and prove once and for all that you are the real know-it-all! Gather your friends and family 'round and get ready to learn some wild and crazy trivia and fact such as:
- True or False: A chicken once survived almost two years after having its head cut off. - True or False: The dog that played Toto in The Wizard of Oz was paid a salary. - How many baseballs does the MLB use every season? - What state has jousting as its official sport? - True or False: Most Canadians live south of Seattle.
Shane Carley was born in New Hampshire, and, after almost a decade in Washington, DC, he has triumphantly returned to the beautiful Granite State. A longtime aficionado of all types of alcohol, Shane jumped at the opportunity to launch a series of cocktail companion books. His love of the written word transcends formal publication, and he currently works as a content developer for award-winning PR agency Matter Communications. Shane is a science fiction enthusiast who hopes someday to make the jump into fiction writing. He once met Warren Ellis and it was the greatest moment of his life.
The Illustrated Histories of Everyday Expressions
The Illustrated Histories of Everyday Expressions uncovers the fascinating, humorous, and often unbelievable origin stories behind the English language’s most common sayings!
Nobody thinks twice about sayings like “bite the bullet” and “the cat’s out of the bag.” But the strange and wonderful origins of these expressions are far from arbitrary: They are rooted in forgotten history. Within this book, you will discover idioms like:
- Why we say an unwell person is “under the weather.” It goes back to when sickly sailors and seafarers had to rest below deck! - How come sitting in the passenger seat of a vehicle is called “riding shotgun." In the Wild West, passengers had a crucial job: packing heat and preventing highway robberies! - What’s up with the phrase, “cat got your tongue.” Here’s a hint: It doesn’t have anything to do with cats!
With over 100 pieces of original artwork, The Illustrated Histories of Everyday Expressions is as beautiful as it is entertaining and informative. Read up on this fascinating history of the English language’s 64 most popular idioms, and you will know what it really means when you say “pass with flying colors,” “bury the hatchet,” and “rest on your laurels”!
The Illustrated Histories of Everyday Inventions
The Illustrated Histories of Everyday Inventions uncovers the fascinating, humorous, and often unbelievable origins behind the world’s most overlooked innovations!
Nobody knows the backstories behind our most taken-for-granted inventions, like credit cards, egg cartons, windshield wipers, and breakfast sandwiches! But the strange and wonderful origins of these inventions are far from ordinary: They are rooted in forgotten history. Inside this hardcover book, discover the extraordinary true stories of:
the TOASTER — actually the best thing before sliced bread the PASSPORT — the original Facebook the TOOTHBRUSH — so much more than bamboo + hog bristles the PIZZA SAVER — no pie left behind since 1985 SLICED BREAD — at first, no one wanted it and MANY, MANY MORE of history’s most influential discoveries!
Organized chronologically from 75,000 B.C. to today and illustrated with more than 200 pieces of original artwork, The Illustrated Histories of Everyday Inventions is as beautiful as it is entertaining and informative. Discover who invented BATHING, why some of the first-ever BEDS were naturally mosquito-repellant, how president Theodore Roosevelt’s encounter with a black bear inspired the TEDDY BEAR, and why SELFIE STICKS might be older than you think!
Origins of a Journey
Feed the adventurer in you with Origins of a Journey, more than 120 stories of history’s most famous travellers and their finest adventures.
Inside each of us lives an explorer who yearns to visit the great unknown. Feed the adventurer in you with Origins of a Journey, more than 120 stories of history’s most famous travellers and their finest adventures. These are the tales behind the history’s bravest pioneers, bringing you from the ocean’s black depths to the top of Mount Everest. Harriet Tubman ferries fugitive slaves along the Underground Railroad—not once, not twice, but 19 times. Teddy Roosevelt risks life, limb, and sanity as he charts the Amazon’s River of Doubt. Buoyed by the voice of God, Joan of Arc travels to Vaucouleurs to petition Charles for a chance to fight for France. Charles Darwin notices several different finch species while touring the Galápagos Islands, fundamentally changing how we understand life. Spanning from 500 BC to today, Origins of a Journey teaches us that there is always value in an adventure, no matter how small—or doomed—it may be.
Origins of a Story
“If you’ve wondered how your favorite masterpieces got their starts, the itch can now be scratched.”—Foreword Review’s Matt Sutherland
“Grogan’s research is meticulous and empirical…a lively peek into literary genius.”—Kirkus
For readers and writers alike, Origins of a Story is the inspiring collection of 202 amazing true stories behind the inspiration for the world’s greatest literature!
Did you know Lennie from Of Mice and Men was based on a real person? Or how about that Charlotte’s Web was based on an actual spider and her egg that E. B. White would carry from Maine to New York on business trips? Origins of a Story profiles 202 famous literary masterpieces and explores how each story got its start. Spanning works from the nineteenth century to the twenty-first, this book is the first of its kind. Get glimpses of the reality behind these fictional stories, and learn about the individual creative process for each writer. Origins of a Story will not only leave you with a different perspective into your favorite works of fiction, but it will also have you inspired to take your everyday life and craft it into a literary masterpiece!
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