Badass: A Relentless Onslaught of the Toughest Warlords, Vikings, Samurai, Pirates, Gunfighters, and Military Commanders to Ever Live
An unstoppable collection of the most hardcore figures who ever strapped on chain mail and ran screaming into battle
Throughout history—from the bone-crushing age of antiquity to the sack-tearing modern era—there have been larger-than-life ass-kickers with a natural talent for unleashing their epic bloodlust on anyone who crossed them. They built empires, smashed armies,...more
This is less a history book and more like a drunk conversation during a football game with your college roommate who’s majoring in history and pulling straight A’s despite living almost exclusively on Big Macs and bong resin. This is world history taught by the triumvirate of Sylvester Stallone, Samuel Jackson and John Madden.
....and I thought it was sooooooooooooooooo much fun.
The problem is that the writer is too busy using modern hyperbole to describe each person that it just becomes silly. For instance in one description the viking Harald Hardrada is described as doing a top rope elbow drop, while in another Miyamoto Musashi is described as rocking out to 80s metal. Seriously, it ends up feeling like a 14 year old boy wrote the book. And because o...more
To come close you'd have to conquer a nation...or TWO...and then do a fricken backflip for no fucking reason other than to kick GOD himself in his bearded chin. (You know...to prove that you could.)After that, you'd have to survive some insurmountable odds...like WAY worse than that 300 shit you saw. Only...more
Now, I'm no longer a teenage boy myself, but I do appreciate obnoxious sarcasm from time to time, and I certainly enjoy a good hyper-masculine, testosterone-fueled look back at historical figures.
Combine that with a proclivity for words one rarely hears in polite conversation and a...more
And I laughed until it hurt.
What I imagined was some marginally literate surfer dude who was given an encyclopedia of military history, and who keeps rushing into your dorm room screaming, "You gotta get a load of THIS!" and then paraphrases what he read about some skull-crushing, throat-tearing Conan the Barbarian type. The exuberance and enthusiasm of the author jumps...more
Though I should have known from the title, the rhetorical style of the author is something akin to a fourteen-year-old comic book nerd who has learned a few words of how “real men” talk and parrots them ad nauseam in attempt at Spike TV-type “manliness”. A few pages in, it becomes extremely tiresome, and it is sustained throughout...more
I've read a lot of books by stand-up comics and most of them aren't funny. The stand-up act just doesn't translate to the written word (Denis Leary is an example, Jim Norton is an exception). On his webpage Ben Thompson describes himself as "a full-time corporate wage slave who spends his spare time writing about things he thinks are badass" and he runs an hilarious website called "badassoftheweek.com" that should be required reading for every...more
It's history meets shock disc jockey. That might work if there was something clever in the shock but it's pedestrian and repetitive. It also uses references to US culture and society that I'm not familiar with and hence I'm lost by it.
Here's some irony. He writes about how the Spartans would banish "pussies" to Athens, those who wanted to study and read books instead of being a Spartan who focused on being a warrior. It seems the author agrees with the Spartans and yet...more
And, as Bill Cosby used to say about the "Fat Albert" show, if you're not careful, you might learn something before it's done.
The authors writes his overviews in a very over-the-top manner. Some examples:
- …so Duke William raised an army and started beating the crap out of everyone just to prove to his peo...more
Lo que nos cuenta. Ligera aproximación a diferentes figuras de la historia (que no siempre de la Historia) de muy distinto calibre, que para el autor encarnan distintas versiones de lo que debería ser un “tipo duro”, con una revisión previa de lo que él entiende por ese concepto y un viaje posterior por diferentes periodos de nuestra historia.
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This is a POOR, ie, BAD, WRITER This is a STUPIDLY written book. This book seems to be written for ignorant, low IQ teenaged boys.
I actually listened to this book while at the gym, and it was perfect for t...more
If you're not familiar with the site, and just like the idea, I have to warn you: Thompson's writing style is an acquired taste.
Perhaps the title of the book should have clued me in,...more
The premise of this book is quite simple: compile 40 historical figures that are recorded in history because of their bravery. Or, as this book calls it: badassitude.
And that last remark is what makes this book stand out from its peers: it's serious history, brought very lightly. It's tailored to those people who ask "explain it to me like I'm five".
So it's a very accessible book, but still worth reading for people that are intere...more