Category Archives: Trivia

1,227 QI Facts to Blow Your Socks Off- John Lloyd and John Mitchinson

Synopsis (from amazon)

QI is the smartest comedy show on British television, but few people know that we’re also a major legal hit in Australia, New Zealand, Israel and Africa and an illegal one on BitTorrent. We also write books and newspaper columns; run a thriving website, a Facebook page, a Twitter feed; and produce an iPhone App and a sister Radio 4 programme. At the core of what we do is the astonishing fact – painstakingly researched and distilled to a brilliant and shocking clarity. In Einstein’s words: ‘Everything should be as simple as possible, but not simpler.’

Did you know that: cows moo in regional accents; the entire internet weighs less than a grain of sand; the dialling code from Britain to Russia is 007; potatoes have more chromosomes than human beings; the London Underground has made more money from its famous map than it has from running trains; Tintin is called Tantan in Japanese because TinTin is pronounced ‘Chin chin’ and means penis; the water in the mouth of a blue whale weighs more than its body; Scotland has twice as many pandas as Conservative MPs; Saddam’s bunker was designed by the grandson of the woman who built Hitler’s bunker; Under the Wildlife and Countryside Act of 1981, it is explicitly illegal in Britain to use a machinegun to kill a hedgehog.

1,227 QI Facts To Blow Your Socks Off will make you look at the universe (and your socks) in an alarming new way.


This is going to be quite a quick review because I don’t really have much to say.

As with the other QI books I have read (have a look at the QI tag) this book is full of interesting facts. It’s immensely quotable and I did tweet quite a few facts whilst I was reading it. Unfortunately some of the facts repeated what had been on the TV show, and I think the majority of QI readers are probably also QI watchers.

I read this on kindle but I think it’s probably better as a paper book, simply because it’s easier to dip in and out of a paper book. On a kindle you really have to read cover to cover which didn’t work well for a book which is basically a long list of facts.


Buy it:

Kindle (£0.20)

Paperback- pre-order (£7.99)

Hardback (£5.99)

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The QI Book of General Ignorance

The Book of General Ignorance

Image via Wikipedia

Synopsis (from Amazon)

The indispensable compendium of popular misconceptions, misunderstandings and common mistakes culled from the hit BBC show, QI. The noticeably stouter QI Book of General Ignorance sets out to show you that a lot of what you think you know is wrong. If, like Alan Davies, you still think the Henry VIII had six wives, the earth has only one moon, that George Washington was the first president of the USA, that Bangkok is the capital of Thailand, that the largest living thing is a blue whale, that Alexander Graeme Bell invented the telephone, that whisky and bagpipes come from Scotland or that Mount Everest is the world’s tallest mountain, then there are at least 200 reasons why this is the book for you.


Seeing as I love the TV show QI I was hopeful for this book, but actually loving the show probably made the book not so good for me. Most of the facts were copied from the show so I already knew them- especially as I watch the repeats on Dave. The book was a little dry too. Although the facts were interesting, and it’s kind of amazing to think that all these things that you think you know aren’t actually true. The way it’s presented is just not as good as the TV show which I find funny, and of course quite interesting! If you haven’t seen the show you probably wouldn’t think to read the book, but if you have seen the show you’ll get little from the book. If you haven’t seen the show then the book is worth the read- but I’d say go for the TV show if you can.


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