I think I have mentioned once before that I have a bit of an obsession with facts and trivia. I would probably do well in a pub quiz situation, but my generally intense approach to most things would likely make my team membership a short one. This doesn’t stop me devouring useless information whenever it pops up and today I will indulge my obsession a little more. Because books are weird and wonderful things – this Just For Fun Friday celebrates the fact.
The Weird and Wonderful World of Books and Authors
- The world’s largest book is the Klencke Atlas, measuring 1.75 metres long and 1.90 metres wide (for non-metric friends, this is pretty big). The book was a gift for King Charles II and contains 37 printed maps.
- Over 20,000 books have been written about the game of Chess.
- There is a book in which the writer calculates pi to 2 million places, taking 800 pages to do so.
- New York Public Library bookshelves, if spread out end-to-end, would cover 80 miles.
- If you think that’s impressive, the Library of Congress bookshelves would cover 327 miles.
- Noah Webster took 36 years to complete his first dictionary.
- The world’s most expensive book, at $150 million, has just 13 pages. It is The Task by Tomas Alexander Hartmann.
- The original publication run for JK Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone was just 500 books, as Bloomsbury were worried that it wouldn’t sell.
- In the US, an average of 57 books per second are bought (although recent surveys suggest a yearly reading average of just 4 books for each American).
- Some scholars seriously believe that Lewis Carroll, author of Alice in Wonderland, was the notorious murderer Jack the Ripper.