When I bought this book I surely thought it was going to be one of those satires, peppered with unusual factoids like Monty Python, et al. However, sadly it is not. The funniest part, coincidentally, is the beginning, where they explain how the editors would not let them print the original book, as it would be the first book in the world that could be seen from the moon...I laughed hard on that one and settled back for more of that nonsense. Well, perhaps I missed something.
This book talks about history, all right, but it has no continuity. We get Napoleon in the same breath as the Hittites, and the timeline jumps back and forth like a damn yoyo. It needs a major rewrite and a damn good editor, and perhaps someone should explain to the authors what makes people laugh.
I checked some of the other reviews of this book, and some thought it was pretty entertaining. What I want to know is, "What were THEY on when they listened to it?" Straight up, it's kind of lame. Occasionally during the rather bland narrative, there will be a little aside, like "The Minoans probably never guessed that would happen..." But that kind of stuff was just annoying.
History is a difficult subject to capture one's attention, but it can be done. "Lies My Teacher Told Me, Everything Your American History Book Got Wrong" is one. "All the Trouble in the World, the Lighter Side of Overpopulation, Famine, Plague and Poverty" is another.
This Mental Floss thing is not a joke, it's a disjointed combobulation of sentences are just strung along in no apparent order for no apparent reason. Now if you think THAT's funny, go ahead -- blow your brains out.
It was interesting and offered a humorous view of many historical events.
I would not have changed the story, but it was challenging to listen to. It seems to me this is more of a book that is meant to be read, especially with all the facts and figures.
It was enjoyable and worth the time, but would have been better enjoyed in a print format.
I love history, and I appreciate the little facts compiled in this book. It's good for the car, as it's easy to come in and out of the story without losing track.
The narrator's voice is annoying, and he pronounces a lot of the words incorrectly (parabola, anise, to name a couple). Sometimes his voice bothered me so much that I just had to take a break.
I suspect this book would have been much better in a regular book format, rather than on audio. The boring and repetitive lists of events at each chapter (?) start are probably laid out visually in such a way as to allow you to refer back during the meat of each section. Aside from that, it was still a light and entertaining overview of historical events, presented in a way that I wish my dusty old history teachers could have taught it. I was even mightily impressed with the narrator's ability to make coherent sounding sentences using the tongue-twisting names of ancient civilizations and foreign languages. Until the book hit the 1940's and I had to endure hearing "nucular" spoken over and over again. I subtracted a star for that alone, and I'm afraid I had to abandon the audiobook while it was in the home stretch.
This is my tenth Audible book and the worst by far. It's basically a list of historical events with a few anecdotes thrown in. It seems to jump from one geographical area to another with the emphasis on incidental events, and the chronology is confusing too. The narrator is awful -- an unattractive tone without expression and the attempt at humor is pathetic.
Just listen to the sample -- there's a word repeated twice which they left in and that sloppiness is typical of the whole project. The authors don't appear to have made any effort to make the book a quality product -- must have been paid to churn it out as quickly as possible.
I read a lot of science and history. This book is an insult. I think I've made my point. To be honest, I only listened to the first 4 chapters but couldn't continue for obvious reasons.