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Book review: Baboon Metaphysics and Other Implausibly Titled Books

Baboon Metaphysics and other implausibly titled books - coverThe sequel to How to Avoid Huge Ships, Baboon Metaphysics and other implausibly titled books is another collection of amusing, unusual and just plain weird book titles found as part of the annual Diagram award. Run these days by the Bookseller magazine, the award goes each year to the most bizarre book title.

As with its predecessor, the book is a slim volume, with full colour reproduction of the covers of the 50 books it mentions. Some of the titles cover highly niche specialisms (such as Thermal movements in the upper floor of a multi-storey car park), some are rather eccentric title choices (such as Children are wet cement) and some leave you suspecting that they were deliberately given a weird title just to catch your eye (such as Eat your house).

Both this book and its predecessor are at the popular end of the odd book titles market as it were: short, colourful coffee table type books that if purchased at original cover prices are rather pricey. The more serious end of this little publishing market is Bizarre Books, which has no colour and few illustrations but is crammed with hundreds of titles. It also has a much heavier concentration on older titles, so side-stepping those which you suspect were deliberately given odd titles and instead containing many books whose titles at the time would have seemed normal but the passage of time has turned them into amusing choices of words.

All three of the titles are available very cheaply second-hand, however, so there is no need to worry too much about which you will find the most amusing.

Baboon Metaphysics includes Did Lewis Carrol visit Llandudno? which I reviewed earlier this year and also one of the many titles from Philip M Parker, the man whose automated systems have produced over 200,000 books.

You can buy Baboon Metaphysics and other implausibly titled books from Amazon.

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