This collection of top 10 goodies—including “Songs About the Body” and “Amazing Cars for Hire”—has plenty to entertain, if not educate.
Coming at readers like a cross between Man’s Adventure pulp magazines and Ripley’s Believe It or Not, complete with a rainbow-reflective cover and a hefty 320 pages, Terry’s compilation has a pleasing tongue-in-cheek tone—a good number of the lists are “unofficial.” Many of the entries are refreshingly nonhuman, which keeps the book from becoming a celebrity-filled bore. There are plenty of creepy entries from the animal kingdom, including sea lampreys, a great range of natural forces (biggest cave systems, longest coastlines) and a fine gathering of epic structures: buildings with the most ghost sightings, the biggest private house, and did you know there is a cash bar inside Cristo-Rei, the monumental statue of Jesus in Portugal? On each photo-splashed page are “Xtreme Facts” and “Off the Chart” addenda. The sheer busyness of the design—there is not one spare micron of space for eyes to rest on—will endear the book to readers with short attention spans, who might just find themselves looking up after an hour has passed, astonished at their absorption.
For fans of the form, this compendium has plenty of juice. (index) (Reference. 8-14)