Monday, October 4, 2010

10 Books A Day: #157

The World Guide to Gnomes, Fairies, Elves and Other Little People...Thomas Keightly...Avenal

Mythological Creatures...Paulita Sedgwick...Holt Rinehart & Winston

Living Wonders...John Michell and Robert J. M. Rickard...Thames and Hudson

Alien Dawn...Colin Wilson...Fromm International

The Body Snatchers...Daniel Cohen...Lippencott

The Hollow Earth...Dr. Raymond Bernard...University Books, Inc.

Strange Stories, Amazing Facts...Reader's Digest Association, Inc.

More Of The Straight Dope...Cecil Adams...Ballantine Books

Return Of The Straight Dope...Cecil Adams...Ballantine Books

Triumph Of The Straight Dope...Cecil Adams...Ballantine Books

Today's list could be subtitled "Odd Beliefs and Bizarre Facts." The Keightly book is a reprint of an 1880 volume, and from internal evidence I believe it to be a source book for several legends that James Branch Cabell employed in Figures of Earth. Sedgwick's book is a profusely illustrated (I assume by herself) dictionary of mythological creatures, for younger people. Living Wonders is subtitled "Mysteries & Curiosities of the Animal World," and deals with such things as monkey bridges, eagle abductions, rat kings, and cats with wings. Cohen's book deals with errant bodies all over the world, including mummies and screaming skulls, and Wilson's looks at the alien abduction phenomenon. The Hollow Earth is a classic volume of crackpot theory, and the Reader's Digest browser deals with things that sound fantastic but have been asserted as fact. This kind of shades into The Straight Dope books, where Cecil Adams considers weird beliefs, old wives' tales, and urban legends and tells what can be rationally determined about them.

Book Count: 1884.

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