Book review of "The Guiness World Records 2008'

2008-12-17 00:00

I remember my first (and only) Guinness World Records book. The cover was green and my dad brought it home when I was 10. It was one of those gifts that get handed out in the business world that bear no relation to anything the recipient does (he worked in shipbuilding) and he didn’t want it, but he handed it to me with a cheerful “don’t look a gift horse in the mouth”.

The Guinness World Records book, which is updated annually with a fresh crop of records verified by the GWR panel, is probably one of the best presents you can give a curious ten-year-old. At that age you’re a newly competent reader and you’ve begun to realise how large and strange the world really is.

Crammed with nuggets of obscure information (“tallest mountain in the solar system”, “smelliest bird”) and crazy deeds (“most underpants worn”) it’s an eye-opener and the perfect companion for the long summer break stretching ahead. And if you’re an adult tottering off on your annual holiday feeling burnt out you could do worse than pack a copy in your suitcase for some very light reading.

Shelagh McLoughlin

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