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Discover illustrated profiles of the weird, outrageous (and true!) tales from American history that don't appear in school textbooks. From the creators of the comedy/history podcast "The Dollop," "The United States of Absurdity" presents short, informative, and hilarious stories of the most outlandish (but true) people, events, and more from United States history. Comedian Discover illustrated profiles of the weird, outrageous (and true!) tales from American history that don't appear in school textbooks. From the creators of the comedy/history podcast "The Dollop," "The United States of Absurdity" presents short, informative, and hilarious stories of the most outlandish (but true) people, events, and more from United States history. Comedians Dave Anthony and Gareth Reynolds cover the weird stories you didn't learn in history class, such as 10-Cent Beer Night, the Jackson Cheese, and the Kentucky Meat Shower, each accompanied by a full-page illustration that brings these historical "milestones" to life in full-color. Adding to the giftable history/comedy package, each story is accompanied by tongue-in-cheek trivia and timelines that help place the stories in context with the more well-known historical events that occurred around them.


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Discover illustrated profiles of the weird, outrageous (and true!) tales from American history that don't appear in school textbooks. From the creators of the comedy/history podcast "The Dollop," "The United States of Absurdity" presents short, informative, and hilarious stories of the most outlandish (but true) people, events, and more from United States history. Comedian Discover illustrated profiles of the weird, outrageous (and true!) tales from American history that don't appear in school textbooks. From the creators of the comedy/history podcast "The Dollop," "The United States of Absurdity" presents short, informative, and hilarious stories of the most outlandish (but true) people, events, and more from United States history. Comedians Dave Anthony and Gareth Reynolds cover the weird stories you didn't learn in history class, such as 10-Cent Beer Night, the Jackson Cheese, and the Kentucky Meat Shower, each accompanied by a full-page illustration that brings these historical "milestones" to life in full-color. Adding to the giftable history/comedy package, each story is accompanied by tongue-in-cheek trivia and timelines that help place the stories in context with the more well-known historical events that occurred around them.

30 review for The United States of Absurdity: Untold Stories from American History

  1. 5 out of 5

    Montzalee Wittmann

    The United States of Absurdity: Untold Stories from American History by Dave Anthony and Gareth Reynolds is a great collection of the crazy stuff that has happened in the US that Americans have forgotten or never knew about to begin with. There are some really strange and bizarre things in here that I forgot but the way they told it was funny and refreshing, such as the stinky cheese in the White House, the straw hat riots, and those poor radium girls. But new things like raining meat episode i The United States of Absurdity: Untold Stories from American History by Dave Anthony and Gareth Reynolds is a great collection of the crazy stuff that has happened in the US that Americans have forgotten or never knew about to begin with. There are some really strange and bizarre things in here that I forgot but the way they told it was funny and refreshing, such as the stinky cheese in the White House, the straw hat riots, and those poor radium girls. But new things like raining meat episode in Kentucky, the eggnog riot in West Point, and what happened to the famous Heimlich after his cure for choking. Great stories told in a fun, witty, and entertaining way to keep the reader interested. Great job! Loved the book! Thanks NetGalley for suggesting this book!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Steve

    I received this from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Corny, humorous, and dare I say it, absurd. If you are interested in reading about some of the craziness that makes up the US of A, this book is for you. The amazing thing is that only ONE of the accounts is set in Florida...

  3. 5 out of 5

    Anthony Ryan

    The hosts of The Dollop podcast take us on a journey through the frequently hilarious, macabre and bizarre world of American history. A grand carnival of crackpot inventors, circus freaks, religious zealots and political hucksters combine to give a surprising insight into how the US got to be the way it is. History, it seems, arises more from flawed and deluded souls than it does the supposedly great or legendary.

  4. 5 out of 5

    ☘Misericordia☘ ~ The Serendipity Aegis ~ ⚡ϟ⚡ϟ⚡⛈ ✺❂❤❣

    Many of the stories (can call them jokes!) are not funny but instead deadbeat and plain insensitive. Q: It’s one of those ideas that sounds great until you think about it, and then it sounds crazy. (c) Q: You knew you had a crazy idea when they said no in that era. (c) Q: RADIUM GIRLS (1917–1930s) ... The radium girls, however, were told Undark was fine and safe. To keep a fine point on their brushes, the girls were instructed to run the wet brushes between their lips. They did this hundreds of times a Many of the stories (can call them jokes!) are not funny but instead deadbeat and plain insensitive. Q: It’s one of those ideas that sounds great until you think about it, and then it sounds crazy. (c) Q: You knew you had a crazy idea when they said no in that era. (c) Q: RADIUM GIRLS (1917–1930s) ... The radium girls, however, were told Undark was fine and safe. To keep a fine point on their brushes, the girls were instructed to run the wet brushes between their lips. They did this hundreds of times a day. ... Unfortunately, the health of the OG radium girls was fading. The radiated clock dial was ticking. One of the girls, Amelia Maggia, was losing weight, her joints ached, and her mouth would bleed regularly. When she went to the dentist to have a painful tooth removed, her jawbone splintered under the dentist’s hand. Sadly, almost her entire jaw had to be removed. On the bright side, she got the tooth out. ... Another could barely walk, and her hair glowed in the dark. Good for night reading; bad for not dying. (c) Poor girls! Q: THE STRAW HAT RIOT (SEPTEMBER 1910–SEPTEMBER 1925) ... It was all well and good for a while, but eventually people started to take the straw hat rules very seriously. Hat tensions swelled in Pittsburgh on September 14, 1910. That night, young people who were very angry about people wearing hats so late in September started an organized protest. ... Americans felt like straw hats were being worn too late in the year, dammit! ... It did stop but not because Americans wised up. The real reason was the introduction of felt hats that phased out the straw ones. The people remained batshit—hatshit. (c) Q: NEWPORT SEX SCANDAL (FEBRUARY 1919–SEPTEMBER 1921) ... Arnold wanted to form an elite unit of sexy, straight Navy men who could infiltrate these gay get-togethers and find out who was gay…by doing gay things with them. To be clear, his investigation consisted of sending straight men to go be gay with gay men. Yes, this was a good plan and absolutely not gay. ... National media picked up the story, and people were pretty freaked out by it. It all just seemed so weird. The highest officials in the US government, reading this press, couldn’t believe it. (c) Well, this was funny! Even though highly insensitive! Q: Around 3 p.m. Dr. Dick arrived. Yes, yes, his name was Dr. Dick—grow up! (c) Q: What he was right about was that dolphins are very smart and emotional beings. What he was wrong about…was everything else. He thought dolphins were the key to a telepathic way to communicate with extraterrestrials. (c) Q: In 1965, he came up with the idea of having a dolphin and a woman live together for ten weeks with no contact with the outside world. Twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week—one woman and one dolphin. We now call scenarios like this “sellable reality shows." ... experiment…so Margaret did what we all would do. She jerked off Peter the dolphin. Dr. Lilly was thrilled by this development. He knew that this interspecies handjob was the next logical step in getting us to speak to aliens. As the weeks went on, so did the dolphin hand j’s. Margaret saw nothing wrong with it, because it made Peter happy. And that, in turn, made Margaret happy. And that made Lilly happy. Yes, everyone was happy! Just a grown woman jacking off a fellow mammal in a dolphin-human hybrid house. Nothing to see here, folks! (с) Randy, if ever. Q: FUN FACT There were fifty-two deaths related to amusement park rides between 1990 and 2004, as reported by the Consumer Product Safety Commission. Then the Consumer Product Safety Commission stopped tracking the number of theme park deaths. So, it’s all fine? (c)

  5. 4 out of 5

    Diana

    Book received from NetGalley. While I had heard of or read about quite a few of the overlooked parts of history in this book, there were still multiple that were new to me. Someone who isn't a history buff would definitely be in for a bit of a shock about the things that were mentioned in the book. Most of the people mentioned in here are not history's best and brightest and for the ones that are more widely known historical figures, it makes you wonder what they were thinking. I will be getting Book received from NetGalley. While I had heard of or read about quite a few of the overlooked parts of history in this book, there were still multiple that were new to me. Someone who isn't a history buff would definitely be in for a bit of a shock about the things that were mentioned in the book. Most of the people mentioned in here are not history's best and brightest and for the ones that are more widely known historical figures, it makes you wonder what they were thinking. I will be getting a copy of this for my own shelves.

  6. 4 out of 5

    TraceyL

    This is a collection of stories about weird Americans who lived throughout history. I had already heard about most of these people, so I didn't really learn anything new. It has a sense of humor to it which didn't work for me. Pass.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Ronald Keeler

    The United States of Absurdity by Dave Anthony and Gareth Reynolds is a completely irreverent look at the skeletons in the closet of US history. What could be more naked than skeletons in the closet? Nevertheless, this is not porn. There is language that might offend the prudish. To counteract that, there are cultural references that will challenge those who look to find smutty meanings in almost any utterance. The prudish will be left in the dust. Those not left in the dust will get to feel sup The United States of Absurdity by Dave Anthony and Gareth Reynolds is a completely irreverent look at the skeletons in the closet of US history. What could be more naked than skeletons in the closet? Nevertheless, this is not porn. There is language that might offend the prudish. To counteract that, there are cultural references that will challenge those who look to find smutty meanings in almost any utterance. The prudish will be left in the dust. Those not left in the dust will get to feel superior to those who are left at “What does that mean?” The novel, with references to true events but in the reporting of fact truisms are disguised by a slathering of snark, will amuse. This novel is a fast read of 136 pages that will take less than the two hours recommended by Kindle. The reader will be drawn by feelings of unbelief to go on to the next chapter. Six primary divisions of the story will make serious historians scrambling to find primary sources while the rest of us say “I always suspected that,” or, for the know-it-alls among us to reaffirm what we always suspected, “Of course.” Published in 2017, this novel vigorously competes with the absurdities spewed forth daily by the current Emperor Without Clothes. The only danger posed by this novel is that it might lead the sheepish among us to accept that there is not much new compared to what happened in our past. The events of the past described in this novel, the acceptance of them by society at large, were harmful and incorrect. They are not examples to be emulated. Great American Characters ***** The story of Michael Malloy is a cautionary tale to all alcoholics, both functional and the one a reader might be, to be wary of friends. As I read this, I thought of popular tales about the demise of Rasputin, a person who also drank with trusted friends. Set in the early 1930s, this story is believable because of the facts publicly available. This section also has a great story about Nixon. What do you find hard to accept about Nixon? The Best Of American Sports ***** I detest all sports and believe that the reporting and glorification of them are obvious government (s) attempts to distract a population from serious matters; like wars, recessions, and imminent economic collapse. I almost skipped this section. But the story of 10-Cent Beer Night was worth the effort of my sticking around. Cheap beer and a lot of gratuitous nudity; what is not to like? There may have been policy changes related to public sports exhibitions as a result of this. Great American Medical Breakthroughs ***** The authors give a warning about not eating while reading this section. Or not eating too soon before reading. Or not eating too soon after reading. Readers should pay attention to these warnings. They are not trigger warnings. They are common sense. Learning about Heimlich might surprise readers (really? We are talking about 2016 here). The section on The Stomach Men will put readers off their feed. Very Bad American Ideas ***** This section might be a section unto itself, but the authors have selected some examples they think outstanding. The Flying Pinto will resonate with many Baby Boomers who voted for Nader for President. There is another car comparable to the Pinto made by another manufacturer as far as disposability and austere offerings, but nothing offered the fireball displays of the Pinto. When Americans Go Wrong ***** Vampires exist. People believed that around 1900, and some believe it today. But this account of how people dealt with their non-presence is yet another example of stories you don’t want to read around the dinner table. Unless your menu includes some rather unusual organic ingredients. American Tails ***** The story of the Kentucky Meat Shower will encourage readers to come in out of the rain. Imagine receiving a mysterious, gift of plentiful meat from the heavens. What would be your reaction? The authors mention (I think promote is too strong) their Dollop podcast so for readers intrigued enough to want to do follow up activities, either for sourcing or for more interesting stories, the information is here. Snark aside, and I have no problem with it, this novel is hilarious. I give it five Amazon stars for originality and fun.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Betty

    If you enjoy reading about odd and ridiculous events in history, then this is the book for you. Let's face it: the history we learn in school isn't exactly a barrel of laughs. All those events that happened throughout the centuries—while important to know about—are decidedly lacking in the humor department. This book has many funny anecdotes, but it's not exactly the sort of history that would find its way into a school textbook. What you will find are stories about such notable moments as: * The If you enjoy reading about odd and ridiculous events in history, then this is the book for you. Let's face it: the history we learn in school isn't exactly a barrel of laughs. All those events that happened throughout the centuries—while important to know about—are decidedly lacking in the humor department. This book has many funny anecdotes, but it's not exactly the sort of history that would find its way into a school textbook. What you will find are stories about such notable moments as: * The 14-year-old boy who made nitroglycerin in an improvised "lab", who eventually built a breeder reactor in his parent's backyard. * Henry Heimlich's campaign to make the Heimlich maneuver the preferred way to save someone from choking to death, followed by his attempts to prove malaria could cure cancer... and Lyme disease... and AIDS. * Harry Smolinski's attempt to create a flying car... using a Ford Pinto.* A cheese wheel that was gifted to Andrew Jackson, which was four feet in diameter, two feet thick, and weighed a whipping 1400 pounds. * The Straw Hat Riots of 1922, which began because some men were absolute heathens and wore their straw hats past the acceptable dates of May 15th to September 15th. Some of the stories were more interesting than others (as would be the case with any collection such as this), and I was aware of a few—such as the story of the "Radium Girls". I was in need of a light read, and this fit the bill nicely. I received an advance review copy of this book courtesy of Ten Speed Press via Netgalley.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Mystereity Reviews

    See my full review (and more!) at Mystereity Reviews The duo from The Dollop podcast have written a book full of the odd, the outrageous and all the funny stories that never made it into the history books. This was a very humorous take on some of the lesser well-known stories that make up the fabric of our history. The presidential cheese story made me chuckle (What. A. Legend.) and the Lobotomobile story was outrageous, but the best story, and the reason I wanted to read this book, was the Kentuc See my full review (and more!) at Mystereity Reviews The duo from The Dollop podcast have written a book full of the odd, the outrageous and all the funny stories that never made it into the history books. This was a very humorous take on some of the lesser well-known stories that make up the fabric of our history. The presidential cheese story made me chuckle (What. A. Legend.) and the Lobotomobile story was outrageous, but the best story, and the reason I wanted to read this book, was the Kentucky Meat Shower story. The stories are indeed hilarious and absurd, but not necessarily untold. I've seen a few of the stories in other places, and Reddit is full of Action Park stories (and even has its own subreddit, /r/actionpark, so check that out if you want more!) Overall, The United States of Absurdity is a short and funny look at US history, great as a time-waster, side-splitting funny and a must-read for trivia fans and history buffs. Thank you to Ten Speed Press and NetGalley, who provided an advance copy of the book in exchange for my honest review.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Robyn

    Entertaining book that is perfect for fans of Drunk History or The Daily Show. These are humorous, crazy anecdotes that are embellished with funny and colorful commentaries. This would not be appropriate for young readers, but teachers and college students should read this for laughs. Unlike similar books published in the past, this one is not filled with inaccuracies.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Timothy

    An interesting and humorous collection of crazy things that have happened in US History that Americans have either forgotten about or never knew about in the first place.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

    DNF- Though it is an interesting collection of absurd stories I just wasn't enjoying it nor found it humorous.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Andy

    Funny book, didn't take long to read

  14. 5 out of 5

    Amyiw

    "... invited anyone, anyone to the white house. response- Anyone? Anyone, have you met anyone?" So damn true. So this book makes you think what is going on around us isn't quite out of the abnormal. We will be adding it to the updated version. Pretty funny stuff. Definitely entertaining.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Barb

    The creators of the humorous podcast "The Dollop" have assembled some of the weirdest and most outrageous stories from American history, each accompanied by timelines and tidbits that help the reader put the story into perspective, or so they hope. I have never listened to the aforementioned podcast, and if this book is any indication of its definition of "humor," I won't bother searching for it. Although the description says that the stories included here are outlandish, it also describes them The creators of the humorous podcast "The Dollop" have assembled some of the weirdest and most outrageous stories from American history, each accompanied by timelines and tidbits that help the reader put the story into perspective, or so they hope. I have never listened to the aforementioned podcast, and if this book is any indication of its definition of "humor," I won't bother searching for it. Although the description says that the stories included here are outlandish, it also describes them as being hilarious, so I expected to laugh out loud several times while reading this book. Unfortunately, I rolled my eyes many more times than I laughed, and although I chuckled a time or two, I didn't laugh out loud even once. The timelines and trivia interspersed with the stories were at least a little entertaining and informative, but otherwise, the best I can say about this book is that it's short, and I'm now able to cross it off my list and move on to something else. Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read and review this book.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Lisa

    I really got a hoot from reading these stories! Absurd? Yeah, also cringe worthy, ridiculous and laugh out loud funny. Some of the humor was dry, or punny, and often sarcastic. That's just the way I like it. Also, I did like the thought of Andrew Jackson spending 4 years in the Whitehouse and the place reeking of cheese! Great true stories, and if these two authors put out another book, then I'm sure I'll be reading it. Yep, I'd recommend this book. Thanks to NetGalley for the chance to read thi I really got a hoot from reading these stories! Absurd? Yeah, also cringe worthy, ridiculous and laugh out loud funny. Some of the humor was dry, or punny, and often sarcastic. That's just the way I like it. Also, I did like the thought of Andrew Jackson spending 4 years in the Whitehouse and the place reeking of cheese! Great true stories, and if these two authors put out another book, then I'm sure I'll be reading it. Yep, I'd recommend this book. Thanks to NetGalley for the chance to read this.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Shelli

    This is an adult book filled with true short stories that are told through two funny people! I seriously was laughing so hard at the first story that I could barely talk. I love random facts and history. Some of the stories I knew about but most I did not. I loved it. Read it in one sitting. It has some lang. otherwise, I would say this is a great option for those that don't like to read in high school. They move through the text quickly and would feel accomplished by finishing the text so quickl This is an adult book filled with true short stories that are told through two funny people! I seriously was laughing so hard at the first story that I could barely talk. I love random facts and history. Some of the stories I knew about but most I did not. I loved it. Read it in one sitting. It has some lang. otherwise, I would say this is a great option for those that don't like to read in high school. They move through the text quickly and would feel accomplished by finishing the text so quickly. Plus, it is enjoyable to read!!!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Erica

    Did not finish. I LOVE The Dollop. I was excited for this book, history, weird hilarious stories, 2 comedians I love. Bought the audiobook to listen to during a roadtrip. Sadly, this book was not what I was expecting. It was mostly stories from the podcast, and Garreth reads the stories in a very factual, straight-laced manner. Not the entertainment I was expecting. Perhaps I'll get this as a coffee table book.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Greg Huber

    If you're a fan of The Dollop podcast, you're going to love this book. If you're not a fan of The Dollop podcast, read this book, and then get your headphones on for the extended cuts of these stories. The United States of Absurdity takes us on some lesser known, more horrifying and befuddling parts of American history. The stuff you missed in history class. Why? Because these people are despicable drunks prone to violence and fits of insanity: honest, hardworking Americans we love and cherish. Da If you're a fan of The Dollop podcast, you're going to love this book. If you're not a fan of The Dollop podcast, read this book, and then get your headphones on for the extended cuts of these stories. The United States of Absurdity takes us on some lesser known, more horrifying and befuddling parts of American history. The stuff you missed in history class. Why? Because these people are despicable drunks prone to violence and fits of insanity: honest, hardworking Americans we love and cherish. Dave and Gareth take us through the lives of Lobster Boy who, despite his deformities, still managed to work his way around a shotgun when the mood struck. Nixon and Elvis? Better work on your kung fu grip on reality. Sports? They're here too: 10-Cent Beer Night was a real laugh riot. And everyone knows the world would not be the same place without Lenny Dykstra's Players' Club magazine -- the veritable tome of... yeah, there's a reason you haven't heard of it. And that's just the start of bad ideas in THAT tale. Don't worry though -- the United States of Absurdity doesn't stick to all the great ideas these noble Americans have had. Headless chickens, drugging and sleeping with dolphins, radiation poisoning, and vampires are, by God, what made this nation great. Fans of the podcast might find themselves pretty familiar with the stories here, though, and may very well prefer the antics of Gareth and Dave mixed in, which is something the book doesn't do as well. Consider it the Cliff's Notes to our downfall.

  20. 5 out of 5

    David Ward

    The United States of Absurdity: Untold Stories From American History by Dave Anthony and Gareth Reynolds (Ten Speed Press 2017) (973) (3414). This is a short collection of stories about little-known history makers and absurd events from U.S. history of the type not taught in schools. The authors of these essays are the creators of the podcast “The Dollop.”Here is a representative selection of the subjects covered in this volume: “Ten-Cent Beer Night” (in 1974 the Cleveland Indians baseball team The United States of Absurdity: Untold Stories From American History by Dave Anthony and Gareth Reynolds (Ten Speed Press 2017) (973) (3414). This is a short collection of stories about little-known history makers and absurd events from U.S. history of the type not taught in schools. The authors of these essays are the creators of the podcast “The Dollop.”Here is a representative selection of the subjects covered in this volume: “Ten-Cent Beer Night” (in 1974 the Cleveland Indians baseball team drew a crowd of 25,000 on a night in which they sold twelve ounce cups of draft beer for a dime. A riot ensued.), “The Rainbow Man” (a proselytizing nutjob named Rollen Stewart in a rainbow-colored afro wig holding a sign which read “John 3:16”showed up in the end zone of seemingly every televised sporting event from 1977 - 1993), and “Elvis and Nixon” (drug – addled Elvis Presley visited Nixon in the White House and was appointed a special agent in the war on drugs and hippies).There is not much substance to this book, but what there is may elicit a giggle. My rating: 7/10, finished 01/18/20 (3414).

  21. 4 out of 5

    Ron

    If you do not listen to The Dollop which purports to be a American History podcast, this book will give you an adequate sample of Anthony and Reynold's quirky sense of history. What they seek out are the bits of American history most people do not learn about in school. Now, most folks do learn that George Washington was bled to death by his doctors, but how many know about Elvis and Nixon, or the Kentucky Meat Shower (not to mention that Kentucky has a University of Transylvania)? Then there is If you do not listen to The Dollop which purports to be a American History podcast, this book will give you an adequate sample of Anthony and Reynold's quirky sense of history. What they seek out are the bits of American history most people do not learn about in school. Now, most folks do learn that George Washington was bled to death by his doctors, but how many know about Elvis and Nixon, or the Kentucky Meat Shower (not to mention that Kentucky has a University of Transylvania)? Then there is the tale of Michael Malloy and his death which I had heard about on Wait, Wait, Don't Tell me, well they told me anyway! Besides characters, there are medical "breakthroughs", sports stories, and bad ideas that were tried. There are likely to be something to offend and something to tickle your funny bone in this volume. Plus, it is a fast read.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Rachel Hyland

    Written by the makers of the podcast The Dollop, which investigates some of the seedier and weirder personalities and episodes out of American history, this compilation of some of the show’s more outlandish tales is full of “wow” moments, as you shake your head and widen your eyes at the fact that things like this actually happened, and, moreover, that these incidents have been somehow largely forgotten. From hundreds of kilos of famous cheese to brawls over the wearing of straw hats to the eviln Written by the makers of the podcast The Dollop, which investigates some of the seedier and weirder personalities and episodes out of American history, this compilation of some of the show’s more outlandish tales is full of “wow” moments, as you shake your head and widen your eyes at the fact that things like this actually happened, and, moreover, that these incidents have been somehow largely forgotten. From hundreds of kilos of famous cheese to brawls over the wearing of straw hats to the evilness of Dr. Heimlich (DO NOT DO THE HEIMLICH MANOEUVRE, PEOPLE!), there are episodes in here that you might have heard about — especially if you, too, are a devotee of Drunk History — but they are all told in such an amusing manner, the occasional bad pun aside, that the stories bear repeating. Truth is indeed stranger than fiction.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Trin

    Not as funny as the podcast -- it's hard to convey riffing in a straight prose narrative, and Dave and Gareth egging each other on is a great deal of the show's charm. I also think the weirder chapters in this book were the more successful ones: I don't need these guys to tell me about Elvis and Nixon, or the Radium Girls, or Lobotomies -- anything I already know and that a normal history book might teach me. I need them to tell me about The Straw Hat Riot and Ten-Cent Beer Night and the fact th Not as funny as the podcast -- it's hard to convey riffing in a straight prose narrative, and Dave and Gareth egging each other on is a great deal of the show's charm. I also think the weirder chapters in this book were the more successful ones: I don't need these guys to tell me about Elvis and Nixon, or the Radium Girls, or Lobotomies -- anything I already know and that a normal history book might teach me. I need them to tell me about The Straw Hat Riot and Ten-Cent Beer Night and the fact that Henry Heimlich was actually a whack job and his maneuver has been disproven. (The more you know!) Luckily, this book does do those things. I just wish it had done more of them.

  24. 5 out of 5

    minhhai

    Hilarious and entertaining stories from America's past, retold in an informal and humorous tone. You will surely have a good laugh, with some mental pain, when reading about all those crazy things people ever did in the past. Many unbelievably absurd incidents in the book make us wonder how much truth in them. Well, generally they are taken from true stories (as far as my research can tell), but retouched into a comedy-like tone to keep the fun. And that's also the reason why I give this book 3 st Hilarious and entertaining stories from America's past, retold in an informal and humorous tone. You will surely have a good laugh, with some mental pain, when reading about all those crazy things people ever did in the past. Many unbelievably absurd incidents in the book make us wonder how much truth in them. Well, generally they are taken from true stories (as far as my research can tell), but retouched into a comedy-like tone to keep the fun. And that's also the reason why I give this book 3 stars: It's mainly entertaining. We need to deep dive into the details from other sources to actually learn something useful.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Russell Grant

    If I had stumbled on this book as a little boy in grade 5 or 6, it would have been my favourite book. As a big boy, it's still really good. I'm a fan of the podcast that inspired it, THE DOLLOP, and in being a fan this almost reads more like a "Coles Notes" for some of the very best episodes. Entertaining, funny, but not the giddy craziness of the podcast in which Dave reads the text and Gareth responds. To people who don't listen to the podcast, I'm sure the book will be fascinating, just with If I had stumbled on this book as a little boy in grade 5 or 6, it would have been my favourite book. As a big boy, it's still really good. I'm a fan of the podcast that inspired it, THE DOLLOP, and in being a fan this almost reads more like a "Coles Notes" for some of the very best episodes. Entertaining, funny, but not the giddy craziness of the podcast in which Dave reads the text and Gareth responds. To people who don't listen to the podcast, I'm sure the book will be fascinating, just with an odd tone. Each story is a pretty shot read too, so this is perfect toilet reading and should be in every bathroom.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    I liked this book, but it could have been better. It basically had rather short summaries that because of their length miss certain nuances. The podcasts are much more in depth and there is a lack of follow up that I am inclined to believe was done to be funny. Such as with body snatchers a comment is made on how bodies were stripped naked and they don't know why, when a little research will show most places have laws for stealing items like jewlery and clothes from a dead person, but no laws ab I liked this book, but it could have been better. It basically had rather short summaries that because of their length miss certain nuances. The podcasts are much more in depth and there is a lack of follow up that I am inclined to believe was done to be funny. Such as with body snatchers a comment is made on how bodies were stripped naked and they don't know why, when a little research will show most places have laws for stealing items like jewlery and clothes from a dead person, but no laws about stealing the body.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Ashleykim

    Overall, I think some people might this book pretty entertaining, although many of the jokes I didn't find very funny. The book is centered around a specific kind of humor that isn't very sophisticated, and it didn't include the kind of stories that I thought it would. Usually, 'Untold Stories' are about heroes that were underestimated, like women and people of color- not like the story of a man who voluntarily got tarred and feathered for a job he wasn't even aware he was getting. Also, there a Overall, I think some people might this book pretty entertaining, although many of the jokes I didn't find very funny. The book is centered around a specific kind of humor that isn't very sophisticated, and it didn't include the kind of stories that I thought it would. Usually, 'Untold Stories' are about heroes that were underestimated, like women and people of color- not like the story of a man who voluntarily got tarred and feathered for a job he wasn't even aware he was getting. Also, there are a lot of curse words so this is not a book for school reading.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Caitlin

    I only got into the Dollop about six months ago and absolutely love it - I've always been a history buff, but didn't necessarily go much into American history because I got enough of it unavoidably through movies and TV. This is a good "greatest hits" selection of stories from the podcast and as someone trying to catch up on nearly 300 episodes being given the heads-up on some of the more popular stories was helpful - but of course I wanted this book to be longer, and I hope there's going to be I only got into the Dollop about six months ago and absolutely love it - I've always been a history buff, but didn't necessarily go much into American history because I got enough of it unavoidably through movies and TV. This is a good "greatest hits" selection of stories from the podcast and as someone trying to catch up on nearly 300 episodes being given the heads-up on some of the more popular stories was helpful - but of course I wanted this book to be longer, and I hope there's going to be more volumes to follow.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Jason

    This book is basically a collection of amusing stories from US history. There's not really anything deep here, just some interesting light reading. I'd rate it higher if it wasn't for the author(s) constantly trying to insist that there was something more meaningful going on, with frequent proclamations that it will "change the way you look at America." No, it won't. It's just some anecdotes about various weird people. You kind of feel like the author is a bit ashamed that his book is just light This book is basically a collection of amusing stories from US history. There's not really anything deep here, just some interesting light reading. I'd rate it higher if it wasn't for the author(s) constantly trying to insist that there was something more meaningful going on, with frequent proclamations that it will "change the way you look at America." No, it won't. It's just some anecdotes about various weird people. You kind of feel like the author is a bit ashamed that his book is just light reading to kill time.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Amber Lea

    I hope you like bad puns. This is one of those books that's kind of hard to rate because it's dumb and entertaining. I actually thought a few things in this book were bullshit, but I googled them and I stand corrected. I think my biggest complaint about this book is the brevity. I think each of these stories could have easily been twice as long. There were times where they would state something ridiculous and then immediately move on leaving me going, "Wait...what? No, what? Go back. Elaborate. Th I hope you like bad puns. This is one of those books that's kind of hard to rate because it's dumb and entertaining. I actually thought a few things in this book were bullshit, but I googled them and I stand corrected. I think my biggest complaint about this book is the brevity. I think each of these stories could have easily been twice as long. There were times where they would state something ridiculous and then immediately move on leaving me going, "Wait...what? No, what? Go back. Elaborate. There is way more story there."

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