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You Did What?: Mad Plans and Great Historical Disasters
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You Did What?: Mad Plans and Great Historical Disasters

3.11 of 5 stars 3.11  ·  rating details  ·  106 ratings  ·  14 reviews
History has never been more fun than it is in this fact-filled compendium of historical fiascoes and embarrassingly bad ideas.

Throughout history, the rich and powerful, and even just the dim-witted, have made horrifically bad decisions that have had resounding effects on our world. From kings to corporate leaders, from captains to presidents, no one is immune to bad decisi
ebook, 304 pages
Published October 13th 2009 by HarperCollins Publishers (first published 2004)
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So this is one of those books you'd probably never read on an airplane, but it makes for great toilet perusal. It's more or less a series of 3 to 5 page overviews of some of history's great foul-ups, missteps, and general bunglings, from the Trojan War to new Coke.
Ahhh... a nice palate-cleanser.

This is a fun book, even though it's not really new. It plots some of the great errors in history, from the Trojan Horse to New Coke, occasionally meditating on the effects of those errors. For example, was the Russian Revolution given an assist by a young Winston Churchill? Was No, No, Nannette really worth 86 years to the Red Sox? And why on Earth didn't Nixon burn the tapes?

The chapters are short, and most of the stories are familiar, from William Harrison's rej
As with many books of this type, the spice is in the title, not the content. There really wasn't anything that was shocking, surprising, or really interesting for that matter, in this book. Each piece was rather short, just a couple of pages, and was jammed with so many details and names that the main point was lost. Many of the stories probably could have been a book of their own (at least a hefty chapter). If there had been more focus in each piece, the book might have been better, but as it i ...more
David Sarkies
Jul 09, 2015 David Sarkies rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who like these books
Shelves: history
Sometimes laughter is the best medicine
5 July 2013

I used to really like these type of books but you end up getting to a point where accounts of people's stupidity simply cease to be a laughing matter. Mind you, one review of this book almost read like it was an advertisement – who would have thought history could be so funny? I guess the reason is that since the world can be such a harsh mistress at times that you have to take it in one of two ways: deadly serious and become overwhelmed by the
This was a collection of really bad decisions. They ranged from the Trojan War, to Napoleon's invasion of Russia to New Coke. Some were more fun to read than others. There were a couple in there that were too long and didn't seem to fit the rest of the stories. And it was fun to get to a few things that I actually remembered.

Nothing deep and meaningful, but a mostly fun collection.
A good book in this line of things, some tales I already knew but a lot unknow to me. I would recommend this book.
Bit boring to be honest, most of the stories are already common knowledge to most with a modicum of education about them.... A few "oh really?" moments, but the rest, nah.
Fun book. A couple essays that were really well written. Some facts I wasn't aware of. Details I hadn't known before. Worth reading, but not going into my library.
It's okay. A little more casual with the historical supporting evidence than some of my other reads, but still enjoyable.
Very funny take on stupid things people in history have done
got very boring very quickly
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Bill Fawcett has been a professor, teacher, corporate executive, and college dean. His entire life has been spent in the creative fields and managing other creative individuals. He is one of the founders of Mayfair Games, a board and role-play gaming company. As an author, Fawcett has written or coauthored over a dozen books and dozens of articles and short stories. As a book packager, a person wh ...more
More about Bill Fawcett...
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