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Badass: A Relentless Onslaught of the Toughest Warlords, Vikings, Samurai, Pirates, Gunfighters, and Military Commanders to Ever Live Paperback – October 27, 2009


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Frequently Bought Together

Badass: A Relentless Onslaught of the Toughest Warlords, Vikings, Samurai, Pirates, Gunfighters, and Military Commanders to Ever Live + Badass: The Birth of a Legend: Spine-Crushing Tales of the Most Merciless Gods, Monsters, Heroes, Villains, and Mythical Creatures Ever Envisioned + Badass: Ultimate Deathmatch: Skull-Crushing True Stories of the Most Hardcore Duels, Showdowns, Fistfights, Last Stands, Suicide Charges, and Military Engagements of All Time
Price for all three: $40.35

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks; Original edition (October 27, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061749443
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061749445
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.3 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (120 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #268,121 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

An unstoppable collection of the most hardcore figures who ever strapped on chain mail and ran screaming into battle

Throughout history—from the bone-crushing age of antiquity to the sack-tearing modern era—there have been larger-than-life ass-kickers with a natural talent for unleashing their epic bloodlust on anyone who crossed them. They built empires, smashed armies, and ravaged civilizations for wealth, glory, and ultimate supremacy. Sometimes villains, sometimes heroes, sometimes criminally insane, they had one thing in common: They were all . . . Badass!

Chandragupta Maurya
An Indian warlord who commanded an army of drunken war elephants and employed an elite detachment of highly trained female bodyguards

Peter Francisco
An unsung hero of the American Revolution, this powerful giant battled the British with a massive five-foot-long broadsword

Wolf the Quarrelsome
A mysterious barbarian leader who only appears in history twice—and both times he's kicking someone's ass

Bhanbhagta Gurung
A fearless Gurkha who won the Victoria Cross by clearing out six Japanese foxholes with nothing more than grenades, a bayonet, and a knife

From Alexander the Great to George S. Patton, from Genghis Khan to Bruce Lee, this pantheon of ass-kicking awesomeness should inspire you to quit your stupid job and dive headfirst into a new career as a professional badass.

About the Author

Ben Thompson has run the warhammer of a website badassoftheweek.com since 2004, and has written humorous history-related columns for outlets such as Cracked, Fangoria, Penthouse, and the American Mustache Institute. Even though he's never flown a jetpack over the Atlantic Ocean or punched someone so hard that his head exploded, he is considered by many to be the world's foremost expert on badassitude. He is the author of Badass and Badass: The Birth of a Legend.


More About the Author

Ben Thompson is the writer and creator of badassoftheweek.com and author of the books Badass Badass: Birth of a Legend, and Badass: Ultimate Deathmatch. He has written articles for Cracked, Fangoria, Penthouse, and The American Mustache Institute, was once selected "Seattle's Sexiest Dungeon Master" by a local newspaper, and can occasionally beat the Star Wars: The Original Trilogy arcade game with one quarter.

Customer Reviews

The writing style makes otherwise tedious subject matter very interesting.
M. Lang
And it's great reading about great historical figures that have faded into obscurity until this book brought them to light.
Amazon Customer
Allowing people to laugh at such things makes it easier to read and also makes you want to keep reading it!
Chris McGinnis

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

59 of 69 people found the following review helpful By Richard D. Holschen on November 19, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Warning: this book will suck the estrogen right out of you. I would say it was the chronicles of manliness but some of the people covered are women who are apparently more manly than I can ever hope to be. My pregnant wife read this book and the baby spontaneously turned from a girl to a boy. Just sayin'.

The writing style is humorous and light, but admittedly it sometimes borders on juvenile. There are obvious embellishments (I've never actually seen someone crushed under the weight of testicles, but there are things on earth I haven't seen). However, I give the writing style a thumbs up because the author presented a lot of good history in a form that would even keep the attention of a 13 year old boy.

The author does have an odd fetish with faces. He mentioned "face" 105 times in the book, mainly accompanying words like "crush", "stab", or "burn." Oorah!
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85 of 103 people found the following review helpful By J. Hoch on October 29, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Attention Universe: BADASS: A relentless onlaught of the toughest warlords, vikings, samurai, pirates, gunfighters and military commanders to ever live is the greatest work of literature in the history of the written word.

#1: BADASS is very, very good. So good, it is as though Odin himself reached into Valhalla, chose the 40 best heros of history and penned their history into this wonderfully illustrated tome.

#2: After I purchased BADASS, I opened the book to the Library of Congress page. I was immediately slapped in the face by the sheer awesomeness of it. I was transported through history and witnessed, FIRST HAND, the amazing exploits of the legendary historic characters. Once I regained consciousness I actually read it.

#3: This book is so funny that I laughed until my nose bled. I got blood on the pages of the book (it seemed appropriate), but the blood was absorbed by the pages. I think the book was feeding on it.

#4: The information in this book is all historically accurate. And I should know. I work at a university.

[...]
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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful By TaeKwonDodo on November 15, 2009
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I love this book and the website! It is a great mix of real life and screen/literary badasses, told in a very entertaining, lively fashion. The style is such that you actually feel like the author is sitting in the room with you, telling the story and acting it out at the same time. Some of the real life historical people he mentions are seriously badass, performing such incredible acts of crazy courage that it seems foolhardy, and only sheer luck allowed them to be remembered as heroes and not fools. The website is a must - lots more stories and some are expanded over the book (one personal fave - Voytek the soldier bear). Can't wait for a volume 2!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By T. M. W. Hickman on April 6, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I love reading history books, as long as they were not approved by the Texas Board of Education(because then they aren't worth a damn, apparently). However, I understand that not everyone shares my love of historical events. A lot of history books are pretty dry, at best. At worst, they are downright boring. This is not that kind of a book. This is one of the coolest history books I've ever read. I had originally bought it for my nephew, but once I actually started perusing the pages I realized that his mother would have a massive coronary if she saw the language. Even if said language adds to the ambience.

The author, Ben Thompson, runs a site called [...]. He searches the history books for badasses. Not all of the badasses are men, nor are they all from the 20th century, which is refreshing. Thompson relates the stories with gusto, like a teenaged/college aged boy would describe a videogame boss fight to his friends--and this generates interest. The stories of these people maintain that interest. The humor seals the deal. There may be a bit of 'embellishment' in relating the stories, but this doesn't detract in the least. And each chapter is only at most five pages long--perfect for a short attention span or when you only have a minute here or there to read. So of course, I read the whole thing in a couple of hours, with a pause here and there.

This might be a good book for a person who doesn't read a lot to improve their reading skills with a high interest book. It would be perfect for a reader who has trouble with maintaining attention when reading. In short, this is a perfect book to encourage reading in older teenaged boys. The language is really the only thing I think that a parent might take issue with, but since the profanity is a part of the schtick and not specifically gratuitous, I wouldn't have a problem if my 15 year old decided to read it.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Bart King on April 1, 2010
Format: Paperback
While this book's considerable merits have been praised by a variety of reviewers, I want to point out something about it that is easily ignored yet most exemplary:

Its bibliography.

Author Ben Thompson has clearly done his research. His list of sources stretches for a glorious ten pages, thus granting his work a credibility that most nonfiction books for younger readers lack.

This, combined with the fact that reading this book will make even the most thin-blooded milquetoast reach for his short sword, means that this book rocks like Wolf the Quarrelsome.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By M. Perry on January 4, 2010
Format: Paperback
I am a history teacher and usually am pretty picky about what I read. I saw this book at my local bookstore and thought it looked really interesting. While the writing is juvenile I find that is what gives the book its greatest appeal. Granted I am a young guy that gets most of the jokes and the words used but I think that this would be an awesome book for some high school kids to read. I would not most likely let my kids read it because of the language but it speaks to them. It teaches the content greatly and I learned about a lot of different badasses that I have never bothered with learning in the past. I really don't see much of a problem with the book at all other than he loves to use face bashing analogies which get a little old but it didn't detract from the book. Overall I would say anyone willing to take a little humor with their history would love this book. If you are looking for what us history lovers are accustomed to reading then you should run away fast!
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