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Futility Closet: An Idler's Miscellany of Compendious Amusements Paperback – November 18, 2013


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Futility Closet: An Idler's Miscellany of Compendious Amusements + Futility Closet 2: A Second Trove of Intriguing Tidbits + What If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Futility Closet delivers concentrated doses of weird, wonderful, brain-stimulating ideas and anecdotes, curated mainly from forgotten old books. I'm hooked -- there's nothing quite like it!" -- Mark Frauenfelder, founder, Boing Boing

About the Author

Greg Ross edits the popular website Futility Closet, a collection of entertaining curiosities in history, literature, language, art, philosophy, and mathematics. Previously he spent 20 years editing science, engineering, and education publications for publishers such as IEEE, UNext.com, and American Scientist magazine. He lives in Raleigh, North Carolina.
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Product Details

  • Series: Futility Closet
  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Futility Closet; 1 edition (November 18, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0989887103
  • ISBN-13: 978-0989887106
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #359,348 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Greg Ross edits the popular website Futility Closet, a collection of entertaining curiosities in history, literature, language, art, philosophy, and mathematics. Previously he spent 20 years editing science, engineering, and education publications for publishers such as IEEE, UNext.com, and American Scientist magazine. He lives in Raleigh, North Carolina.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
5 star
88%
4 star
4%
3 star
0%
2 star
0%
1 star
8%
See all 24 customer reviews
P.S. Probably a good bathroom book.
Shoshanah
There is something in this book for everybody.
James E. Lyerly
A condensed version of the blog's best.
Paul bleich

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By James Easter on November 25, 2013
Format: Paperback
I have been reading the blog for years, and it is one of the wonders of the electronic world. I'll confess that I haven't yet bought the book -- but that is because Greg Ross made the mistake of letting on that there will be an e-book out in a few days. Or perhaps not a mistake. On reflection, I probably need to have an electronic copy for me AND a material one as a gift.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Eyegor VINE VOICE on November 22, 2013
Format: Paperback
I've been reading Greg's blog for quite some time and his posts are not only interesting, but well-researched and amusing.

I highly recommend getting this book for yourself, your internet deprived friends or anyone who needs something to keep their brain engaged.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Paul bleich on November 27, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A condensed version of the blog's best. Very well done and sure to have some interesting tidbits even for longtime readers.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By LB on November 26, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Another long-time follower of FutilityCloset.com here. Have to say, the book does not disappoint. It's a great collection of little tidbits of information and provides numerous fodder to bring up at cocktail parties. A very interesting read, presented with enough character and subtle dry wit that will have you smiling from page to page.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Paul Buda on December 16, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Reading the entries in "Futility Closet" is like eating a bag of sweets. You keep telling yourself, "Okay, one more and I'll stop." Before you know it, that "one more" has turned into a couple dozen more.

The real charm to the book isn't just in how clever and fascinating each entry is, it's the fact that you never know what the next entry will be about. A historical oddity will be followed by strange scientific fact, which will then be followed by a mind-bending riddle, which will be followed by a bizarre excerpt from a 19th Century newspaper article.

It's a great, fun read that will never leave you bored. I highly recommend it!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Robert C. Ross on January 11, 2015
Format: Paperback
Count me with the majority of reviewers here; this book is filled with oddities, some more interesting than others to me, but with a delightful sense of humor, and a delight in searching out and publishing the extraordinary range of human playfulness. Chess puzzle, logic and math puzzles, a wide range as evidenced by the categories on offer on the website:

Art
Crime
Death
Entertainment
History
Hoaxes
Humor
Language
Literature
Oddities
Podcast
Poems
Puzzles
Quotations
Religion
Science & Math
Society
Technology
Trivia
Uncategorized

The second edition is equally fascinating: Futility Closet 2: A Second Trove of Intriguing Tidbits or http://www.amazon.com/review/R39TWLCDFQPBWV

Robert C. Ross
January 2015
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By James E. Lyerly on January 13, 2014
Format: Paperback
A great little book full of very interesting oddities, facts and interesting short stories. There is something in this book for everybody. Greg Ross has presented information that will keep you glued to the stories and tidbits until you reach the final page. The book is a also filled with written puzzles and, thank goodness, the answers are included in the back of the book.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
These bite sized chunks of curiosity are perfect for moments on the train, doctor's waiting room, or perhaps those more private moments that require just the right length of distraction. I've read a lot of these books, and this one is fresh, entertaining, and a worthy purchase.
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