That Book of Perfectly Useless Information
Mitchell Symons
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Buy *That Book of Perfectly Useless Information* online

That Book of Perfectly Useless Information
Mitchell Symons
William Morrow
384 pages
December 2004
rated 4 1/2 of 5 possible stars

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This collection of facts is described on the dust jacket as “the ultimate trivia guide” and more than lives up to that expectation. Mitchell Symons has compiled a wide range of information that includes categories as wide-ranging as Marriages That Lasted Less Than Six Months, People Who Read Their Own Obituaries, Extraordinary Bequests, People Who Overcame a Stammer, and Famous People Who Use Their Middle Name as Their First Name. Can you imagine Marvin Simon instead of Neil? Or Walter Willis instead of Bruce?

There are 361 pages of facts, but not all can be considered interesting. At some point, more than a few of the entries seem to be there to fill space more than tantalize readers. However, there are more than enough categories and entries that are unusual, amusing, and often flat-out weird to give readers plenty of facts to wow family and friends.

Some that I particularly enjoyed are:

  • Adolf Hitler’s mother wanted to have an abortion but was talked out of it by her doctor.
  • Sigmund Freud was in love with his wife’s sister.
  • Loretta Lynn sang a song entitled “You’re the Reason Our Kids are Ugly.”
What reader of the bizarre wouldn’t enjoy so much interesting, unusual, and perfectly useless information?

© 2005 by Kelley Sittner Hartshorn for

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