Quirkology: The Curious Science of Everyday Lives by Richard Wiseman

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Stars: *****

I read this book for the Science Book Challenge and Well-Rounded Challenge.

Quirkology is EXACTLY what I’m interested in. I love studying and reading about the details of our lives. I like to find out why we do the things we do and what influences us. It’s all VERY interesting and eye opening.

For example, in this book I learned:

1. That many studies have been done to see if your birthdate affects who you are (astrology) and so far, results have been to the negative. There is no proof that when you were born matters. (Not saying I completely dismiss the idea though)

2. It’s easier to tell if a person is lying if you aren’t looking at them. Although people who lie, often exhibit facial changes, you can detect the lie in the voice better by just listening to the person.

3. Many of the people who can walk on beds of hot coals claim that they can do so because they have control over the mind and that they could walk any distance if they want to. However a study performed showed that when given a 60ft bed of coals to walk, all of the participants jumped off around the 25ft mark with second degree burns. So it looks like the explanation is that because you are walking fast and it’s a small area it doesn’t hurt as much.

4. If you’re thinking of writing a personal ad, you should make it 70% ‘this is me’ and 30% ‘this is what I want.’ This combination resulted in the most ads being answered. Plus if you are a woman, have a man right your ad for you, it will do a lot better.

That’s not all I learned but it’s a teaser.

The book also has a website with many different features. When they are doing a new study, you can take part. There are a whole bunch of videos on YouTube. You can Analyze Yourself here. Want to suggest an experiment?

I thoroughly enjoyed this book and recommend it to EVERYONE even if you don’t normally read Non-fiction. You will learn a lot about yourself!

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About Kathleen

I've been a nonfiction lover for as long as I can remember. I love children's nonfiction as well and love to share my knowledge and the books I gained them from, with the world. I wish more people would give nonfiction a chance.