07 September, 2013

"Lists" usually = "Goodness"

Matt Richardson

Just the sort of book i would write, and therefore find interesting ~ nay, fascinating ~ full of facts, trivial and otherwise, in this case about the British royal family, arranged in easy to consume lists. A couple of small annoyances to the thing: The adjective in the title is surely in the wrong place ~ they must have intended it to modify lists not book in order to make real sense ~ that i can put down to the publisher, though; the responsibility for error of fact, on the other hand, belongs squarely on the shoulders of the author, and leads me to question just how reliable he is in other facts, ones i didn't previously know, when he can give Richard II Edward II's dates. Such a simple error is really unforgivable, if for no other reason than that it is so basic, so easily verifiable. I have to admit, however, that this was the only real horror i found ~ though i wasn't looking for them ~ for which i was grateful. There is something about a list which is satisfying, to me at least, as it consists of almost nothing but information; the selection of that information does lend a certain amount of authorial interpretation to it, but a good list or series of lists is relatively complete, the selection is not biased, and the unmediated facts are pleasurable. This series meets these criteria.

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