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The Greatest Stories Never Told: 100 Tales from History to Astonish, Bewilder, and Stupefy Hardcover – Mar 18 2003

4.7 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Harper (March 18 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060014016
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060014018
  • Product Dimensions: 17.8 x 2 x 17.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 499 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #106,657 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

Review

“Full of tasty morsels…A delightful book to arm one for the next dull cocktail party.” (Chicago Tribune)

“Surprising…the essentials of fascinating stories are here.” (Dallas Morning News)

“100 stories you haven’t heard will delight in knowing.…Lively, offbeat and surprising in quick-hit snippets.” (Denver Rocky Mountain News)

“History like you’ve never read it before…Amusing.” (The Tennessean)

About the Author

Rick Beyer is the author of the popular Greatest Stories Never Told book series, and an award-winning documentary filmmaker whose work has been seen on The History Channel, A&E, and National Geographic Channel. He is also an accomplished speaker who inspires and entertains audiences around the country. He lives with his wife in Lexington, Massachusetts.


Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
If you are a freak for interesting tidbits about our kaleidoscopic world, this is a book I'd wager you'll read from cover to cover.
From the discovery of tobacco as a medicinal herb, to America's first president (no it may not have been Washington), to the invention of a stethoscope by a modest French doctor who didn't want to put his ear to the bosom of female patients, to the truth about the background of baseball (spoiler: its cricket for dummies, afterall :)), to the death of Attila the Hun which happened in quite a [boring] manner on his wedding night from a nosebleed while he was drunk, to a story of 3 cigars that may have helped the union side in the civil war....etc etc...this compilation is an absolute ripper.
It's chronicled sequentially from 46 BC to 1990 AD, very well researched (Beyer has worked with the Discovery and the History channels if I am not mistaken) and spiffy enough to open up on any page and get engrossed. Not the stuff of heavyweight history, this, but if this were taught in schools History just may have been the most popular period.
A highly recommended gem for your stash.
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Format: Hardcover
A very entertaining collection of stories of unusual events and people from history. Arranged chronologicaly, starting with the Romans who stole time, and proceeding through such enthralling tales as the man who didn't discover America because he wanted to get home,and king Edward II' valiant but futile attempt to ban soccer (now I know why he was murdered, it was enraged footer fans). Some cherished myths are briskly disposed of, like the notion that medieval people thought the world was flat, and we learn that the Pilgrim Fathers landed at Plymouth Rock because they'd run out of beer. A few of the stories in this book were known to me already, most weren't. At $12.57, that's only about 12 cents per fascinating fact, cheap at the price I would say. Who would you say was the most unlikely person to have saved the life of Abraham Lincoln's son? If you don't know already you need to buy this book.
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Format: Hardcover
Beyer is an author who is dedicated to making history interesting and fun, which he does so well in this collection of one page stories. I found the book especially interesting because of the background work the author had put into his research (the imprint of the History Channel did not hurt either) which raised these tidbits above the normal trivia, or potential urban legends. Beyer highlights some things that should not be lost in the mists of history, and points out historical facts that may be glossed over in many other history books. There is nothing earth shattering here, but more than a few will make you scratch your head, or share with others in conversation. A great book for dipping your toe in history - each story is about a page of text and is well illustrated. There is just enough to get you the interesting point without boring you. It's a truly fun and fascinating book.
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Format: Hardcover
History (with a capital H) is usually presented with the heavy thud of finality. But Mr. Beyer celebrates those moments when history turned on a whim, in this delightful bite-sized book. And so we discover that the Civil War changed its course thanks to three cigars, that the stethoscope was invented by a bashful physician, and that a sex goddess provided the know-how for cell phones.
Those who love history will find new bits to wonder over. And those of us who nodded off in class get to discover that history is, in fact, packed with the wonderful quirks of human nature. Mr. Beyer has collected a broad assortment of stories and tells them with wit and aplomb.
This book makes a great conversation starter. And probably a good gift for dads and graduates.
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By A Customer on March 31 2003
Format: Hardcover
I always hated history in school -- and I hardly ever watch the History Channel -- so I approached this book with great trepidation. I was pleasantly surprised to find myself paging eagerly through the well-written, highly entertaining historical vignettes (each one takes up a mere two pages, perfect for subway reading). Some of them made me laugh out loud; once I had to fight the urge to turn to the stranger next to me and ask if he knew what had killed Atilla the Hun. (I'm not telling.) Although not written for kids particularly, this is also a great book to share with older children . . . especially those who complain that history is dull.
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Format: Hardcover
This is not a coffee-table book, it's a briefcase book, a bathroom book, a bedside book, a stuck-in-traffic book. It's a book for dads and kids, a book for teachers and students, a book for priests and ministers (great sermon material!), and a great gift for practically everyone. My personal favorite involves what Bat Masterson and Wyatt Earp were doing during the 1920s--I won't give away the story but Wyatt was in Hollywood and Bat was in Manhattan! It's clear that the author is not a student of history, he's a lover of history, and the enthusiasm and excitement with which he approaches his subject comes through on every page.
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By A Customer on Aug. 6 2004
Format: Hardcover
I don't usually veer into the land of "interesting facts" books, choosing instead to buy some tried and true bestseller like "Angels & Demons" or "The Bark of the Dogwood" instead. So it was with trepedation that I purchased this book. Boy, am I glad I did! This is fantastic! Forget what you learned (or didn't) in school--this is the way to go. Some really, really fascinating things in here and you can astonish your friends and family with these juicy tidbits. Informative and well written, this book also makes a GREAT gift.
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