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The areas of my expertise : an almanac of complete world knowledge compiled with
Hodgman, John.
Adult Nonfiction PN6165 .H64 2005

Comments  Summary  Reviews  Author Notes

From Publishers' Weekly:

In this super-literate, ultimately exhausting exercise in literary parody, New York Times magazine contributor Hodgman has produced "a compendium of COMPLETE WORLD KNOWLEDGE." From sections titled "What Will Happen in the Future" to "What You Did Not Know About Hobos," he piles up smart-alecky nonsense in layer upon layer of surreal, wholly fictional factoids. Whether highlighting American presidents who had hooks for hands, or sketching out the mythical secrets of Yale University, Hodgman creates a strange and intermittently hilarious parallel universe where lists of history's worst haircuts (in addition to the Mullet, there are the Scrape, the Scab and the Shag-Swoop) are printed alongside descriptions of "famous novels that were not originally published as books." Sprinkled throughout with breathless "factual" interjectionsA"Were you aware of it? The body of Thomas Edison was never buried. Instead it was displayed for many decades in a traveling carnival.... DOES IT EVEN SEEM POSSIBLE?"Athis "almanac" demonstrates Hodgman's formidable imagination, if not his ability to amuse consistently. The individual passages are funny but get lost in an already overstuffed work. For the hyper-well-read fans of publications like McSweeney's, this is a treasure trove of twisted absurdist miscellany. For others, however, it may just be too much of a good thing. Agent, Kassie Evashevski. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

From Library Journal:

What looks like an almanac of deep thoughts is actually a compendium of entirely made-up and useless facts and trivia. Hodgman-a contributing writer to the New York Times Magazine who frequently appears on National Public Radio's This American Life-has a knack for making readers laugh; his witty, entertaining, and handy desk reference for those needing a dose of nonsense includes a list of 700 hobo names, a guide to the worst men's haircuts, a dictionary of shortened words used on submarines to preserve oxygen, and a chart for struggling writers containing the 55 known dramatic situations (e.g., "Boy v. Girl" and "Cyborgs seek fortune on Broadway"). This is one of the funniest and most entertaining books to play on readers' imaginations in recent memory. Highly recommended for all public libraries.-Susan McClellan, Avalon P.L., Pittsburgh (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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