Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Bizarre Books

Finished December 10
Bizarre Books by Russell Ash and Brian Lake

This book has been sitting on my shelves for a while, and it was one of the books I'd challenged myself to read in my TBR Challenge this year.
It is essentially a book of lists, some more interesting than others.
There are 16 chapters and many of them have multiple lists.
The book begins with books with unintentional double entendre titles, one I found less interesting than others. Some titles were only here because words in the title had adopted new meanings since they had been published.
The second chapter lists extraordinary author names, and again I found this less interesting. It seems like making fun of people's names, not something I am comfortable with.
The third chapter was again around author names, this time in terms of how they related to the title of the book they'd written. An example is The Cypress Garden by Jane Arbor.
The fourth chapter is sheet music titles, and again a lot of these only sound funny to us now because of a change in time, many of them dating from the 19th century.
The fifth chapter was more interesting to me. It lists books that are extremely specific in the subject they cover. One that struck me was Busted Tractors and Rusty Knuckles: Norwegian Torque Wrench Techniques and Other Fine Points of Tractor Restoration.
The sixth chapter was along the same lines, but scientific in nature. Titles include ones such as The Diseases of Electrical Machinery.
The seventh chapter covers books on dirty topics, mostly around bodily functions, or dirt.
The eighth chapter covers odd books on plants and animals from Bean Spasms to Carnivorous Butterflies.
The ninth chapter covers medical titles, including some fiction titles that sound a bit odd. From The Romance of Proctology to Coma Arousal, these were sometimes amusing.
The tenth chapter included titles involving love, marriage, and sex. It includes titles such as Literature of Kissing and How Can I Get Married.
The eleventh chapter covers odd pastimes from How to Vamp Without Music to Original Tricks with Cigars.
The twelfth chapter covers odd-sounding fiction titles from We All Killed Grandma to The Fangs of Suet Pudding.
The thirteenth chapter covers titles that sound incredibly dull or unlikely such as Songs of a Chartered Accountant or I Was a Kamikaze.
The fourteenth chapter covers religious books such as My Invisible Friend Explains the Bible.
The fifteenth chapter covers publishing curiosities such as unusual bindings, strange dedications, and books that challenged the writer such having all the words begin with a particular letter of the alphabet.
The last chapter takes on odd books about death or beyond. Titles run from Reusing Old Graves to Do-it-Yourself Coffins.
I found the chapters from five on most interesting, and the book over-all mildly amusing.

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