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The Book of the Bizarre: Freaky Facts and Strange Stories Paperback – October 1, 2008


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Frequently Bought Together

The Book of the Bizarre: Freaky Facts and Strange Stories + Beyond Bizarre: Frightening Facts and Blood-Curdling True Tales + Banshees, Werewolves, Vampires, and Other Creatures of the Night: Facts, Fictions, and First-Hand Accounts
Price for all three: $36.66

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Weiser Books (October 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1578634377
  • ISBN-13: 978-1578634378
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 5 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #379,065 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Varla Ventura is the author of Sheroes, and a scholar and lover of all things odd, unusual, and truly freaky. Her favorite holiday is Halloween, which she celebrates every day. She lives in San Francisco

More About the Author

Varla Ventura, author of Sheroes, The Book of the Bizarre, and Wild Women Talk About Love is a scholar, poet, provocateur and lover of all things odd, unusual, and truly freaky. Her favorite holiday is Halloween, and loves to talk about love. She lives in San Francisco, CA.

Customer Reviews

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Anyone who loves weird facts would love this book.
S. Alter
I too found many errors and incorrect information with this book.
J. Velasquez
And the London Underground is not a political movement.
Author Bill Peschel

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

55 of 61 people found the following review helpful By Author Bill Peschel on April 6, 2009
Format: Paperback
"The Book of the Bizarre" is a collection of facts, half-facts, speculations, fiction and outright falsehoods that was not so much written or compiled but excreted.

It reminded me of Jamie Lee Curtis' rant to her dumb boyfriend in "A Fish Called Wanda": "Now, let me correct you on a couple of things, OK? Aristotle was not Belgian. The central message of Buddhism is not `Every man for himself.' And the London Underground is not a political movement. Those are all mistakes, Otto. I looked them up."

In the case of "Bizarre," I want to tell Varla Ventura that Led Zepplin did not sell their souls to the devil for a recording contract; that cannibal Alfred Packer's first name is not "Alferd"; that Mary Shelley did not snatch her husband's heart from his funeral pyre -- she wasn't even there; that the Locusta who may have poisoned the Emperor Claudius was not Nero's mother, that was Agrippina; and that Michelangelo most emphatically did not carve David "while waiting for his editor to approve his novel, a thriller called `Chislers in Florence.'"

A glance at the bibliography indicates that Ventura harvested other trivia books for her material, including Michael Largo's excellent "Genius and Heroin: The Illustrated Catalogue of Creativity, Obsession, and Reckless Abandon Through the Ages," which is like using Kobe beef to make White Castle burgers. She also listed one book twice, one book incorrectly, and despite an extensive list of websites, forgot Gullible.info, from which I found the suspect "duck dander" law, verbatim.

She also has a deaf ear for prose.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By J. Velasquez on March 2, 2011
Format: Paperback
I love reading books about trivia and weird facts but i HATE when authors don't do their homework and produce half-truths because of lazyness. I too found many errors and incorrect information with this book. Thank goodness I borrowed it from a friend as I do not like to support authors financially like Varla Ventura who should be ashamed as an author when so many out there can't find a publisher who's work deserves more merit than hers. She should really be banned from writing books indefinitely. I should have known when she appeared on an airing of "Coast to Coast AM w/ George Noory" she practically begged listeners to contact her with bizarre stories so she could take them and turn them into a book. She couldn't even speak intelligently and from what I could tell has a less than stellar IQ score. Geez the nerve of some people!!!!!
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By Michael McCarver on January 2, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
If you are a trivia fan then you will love this book! An excellent book to read and impress your friends with your wealth of knowledge afterwards.
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By Opeth32 on October 2, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Love this book and its companion! Awesome job to the author! Was and is a facinating read! Great Christmas idea as well.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book keeps you wanting to read more and more. It never disappoints with crazy, scary and insane stories; all short and to the point.
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