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Wieso fließt der Nil bergauf? (Don't Know Much About)

3.51  ·  Rating Details ·  695 Ratings  ·  74 Reviews
Kenneth C. Davis, author of this popular series, tackles geography with wit, curiosity and knowledge. In doing so, he proves once and for all that there is a lot more to the subject than labeling countries on a map. Davis explains earthquakes, rain forests, Atlantis and whether there are canaries on the Canary Islands. From often amusing perceptions people have had through ...more
381 pages
Published (first published 1992)
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W. Derek Atkins
I read this book, and found much of the information interesting and fascinating. However, I found numerous factual errors, including the following:

1. Davis writes that Texas was annexed into the United States in 1836 - This actually occurred in December, 1845. (p. 116)
2. Davis writes that the Bikini Atoll in the Pacific was the site of the detonation of the first nuclear bomb in 1946 - The first nuclear bomb was actually detonated on July 16, 1945 in Almagordo, New Mexico. (p. 184)
3. In his list
Sep 17, 2014 Barry rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction-misc
Written by a historian, this book is chock full of facts, trivia, and tidbits about history, geography, and science. It's an interesting read, especially if you enjoy learning about a wide range of social studies. While it's interesting, there is one major flaw: a lack of maps. Sure, there are a few maps thrown in, but they are historical maps (like, the first maps that were made) and not useful to a modern reader. This book is indexed comprehensively like it is designed to be a reference book, ...more
Nathan Albright
Jan 24, 2016 Nathan Albright rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: challenge
Don't know much about geography? You're not alone. Neither does the author. Or, to be more precise, sometimes the author confuses writing about geography in such a way as to educate, inform, and amuse audiences who often consider geography to be boring with writing thinly veiled propaganda that engages in double-standards in terms of what the author seeks to promote and what he seeks to attack. This is the sort of book that is written for the people who know little about biblical historical geog ...more
Jul 13, 2009 Jvtv rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people brushing up on Geography
Puts me to sleep sometimes but I'm learning things. Some of those things are interesting.

The book sprinkles excerpts from people in history. My favorite is by Neil Amrstrong the man on the moon:

"We were still thousands of miles away, but close enough, so that the Moon almost filled our circular window. It was eclipsing the Sun, from our position, and the corona of the Sun was visible around the limb of the Moon as a gigantic lens-shaped or saucer-shaped light, stretching out to several lunar d
Kelly ...
May 20, 2016 Kelly ... rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction
I love history and geography and was hopeful that this book would add to my knowledge and encourage my passion. Unfortunately I found the book too simplistic. If you do not have a basic knowledge of the world it might be for you, but I found myself distracted by its errors and longing for more depth.
read with my son for our geography course, it was a thorough trek thru history seen through the eyes of a real estate broker (location, location, location). where it was history we had already covered, it was great. but when it was more recent, and we didn't have the base knowledge, it was hard to grasp because - let's face it - geography without a framework is a boring list of never-heard-of places.

the book was published in the early 90's and it's a product of it's time - pushing an environment
Mar 24, 2014 melydia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was just the book I was looking for. Geography is a science not just of place names and boundaries, but of politics and culture and environment and history. I learned tons about exploration and wars and colonization and weather and climate and more, all in bite-sized chunks that somehow managed to be very accessible without talking down to the reader. I never felt embarrassed by my lack of knowledge, and it opened my eyes to a number of subjects I never knew could be interesting. Definitely ...more
Carianne Carleo-Evangelist
Well that start date is kind of untrue. When I got this from the library I realized it was at 20% already and via LT I realized I'd started and abandoned this in 2015. I nearly did the same in 2016.

While either the e-book format and/or his update have addressed the factual errors mentioned in previous reviews, his updating of this book is random. In one breath he's talking about the fall of Yugoslavia as if it was yesterday and the Euro is a thing of the future. In another, he's talking about th
Scott Worden
I enjoyed learning certain aspects of the book (weather patterns, deserts, planets, cyclones, etc.) That was also its downfall: not enough geography and more about other history and astronomy. I also found that the author didn't go into enough detail (e.g. the difference between an ocean and a sea) and just randomly put things together without much thought behind it.
Gordon Gravley
Oct 16, 2014 Gordon Gravley rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I know a lot more, now. Davis' books are perfect for all of us who were daydreaming or fell asleep in class.
Steven Yenzer
Not a fan. Who was this book written for? Some of the material is very "mature" and the vocabulary would be very challenging for most kids. Yet Davis spends an inordinate amount of time on basic concepts like time zones -- not just their purpose or history, but actually saying "So if it's 6 P.M. in Seattle, it's 10 P.M. in New York," etc.

The tone was gratingly wry, like a Dave Barry book about geography (i.e. "Who ate the Sandwich Islands"). Har dee har.

Also, despite explaining in the introducti
Michael Tarpinian
Put me off right from the start. The editors preface contained a screen against his Intelligent Design opponents. We are anti-intellectual, anti-scientific, myth based, narrow minded, and unintelligent. Jerk.

The rest of the book is pretty good. He eschews explorers biographies and birthrates and sticks with big picture stuff. Great. This is the stuff of conversation and connection. The other crap is what we have Google for.

Annoying: the chapter teasers are repeated twice and sometimes three time
Nostalgia Reader
Not quite what I was expecting... I was hoping it would be a good review of geographical facts that I already knew, combined with ones that I didn't know and some more in-depth descriptions of what I did know. I'd read a couple of Davis's books before and liked them, however these ones were geared more towards kids and not the general masses.

The book addresses many aspects of geography, grouping the "question-and-answers" into semi-thematic chapters. However I really don't think that it lent its
Sep 17, 2013 Thomas rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Nobody
The actual geography information in this book is pretty good. My objections lie in the author's zealous anti-religious and pro-"global warming" propaganda. He speaks about people who have religious convictions as though they are poor morons who just don't know any better. Concerning so-called "global warming", he talks about it as though there was no real evidence to refute the unproven thesis that "global warming" is caused by "greenhouse gases" and that people are at fault. Throughout the book ...more
Sep 18, 2013 Jill rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The author has issued a 2013 revised and expanded edition of this 1992 book for several reasons. One is of course that the geographical arrangement of the world has changed quite a bit in that time. A second is the dismal state of knowledge among Americans about geography generally. (For example, a study in 2006 of Americans aged 18 to 24 found that two-thirds cannot find Louisiana on a U.S. map and two in ten cannot even point to the Pacific Ocean on a world map.) Another is that he sees a need ...more
Mar 19, 2014 Blake rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Audiobook. The author takes a very broad view to geography: it's basically a mix of what we typically think geography is (maps), along with geology, history, and politics. I learned a lot of random facts that I had no clue about, so it was worth listening to. The reader in the audiobook reads through some pretty big lists that I assume were inserts or appendices, but even those were kind of interesting, if a bit tedious.
Jan 18, 2010 Kathy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
See, the problem with buying lots of non-fiction books is that sometimes by the time you get around to reading them, some info is out of date. What could be out of date about geography, you ask? Well, recent anthropological discoveries, political changes which shape nations, scientific proof for theories which have been around forever, etc. My edition of this book was published (and purchased) in the mid-90s, so a few times I found myself saying, "That's not right anymore." But it's my own fault ...more
Aug 11, 2011 Jeff rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good book, similar to "America's Hidden History". The author claims he's going to make Geography less dry for readers, but I don't think he really accomplishes that by discussing such things as ancient Mesopotamia, Egypt, Greek, Persian, etc. societies. Certainly his tidbits are informational if you are already interested in Geography, but not enough to make the layman suddenly become a fan. I also thought his chapter on climate was too preachy. And I don't know if there's an updated edition, bu ...more
Dec 05, 2014 Compugraphd rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

As someone else said, there are no modern maps in this book. Sort of strange, don't you think, in a book that purports to teach Geography. I myself am fascinated with maps and with all the things he was saying, I wanted to look on a map to see where the places he was talking about were, but since we hadn't unpacked any book with world maps (we had just moved), I wasn't able to do that. I would like to read the book again with an almanac next to me so I can check the maps.

It's also interesting
Dennis Hanks
Jan 16, 2015 Dennis Hanks rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Full of interesting tidbits. Liked the story of the obelisk, the well, and the circumference of the earth determined two thousand years ago (thereabouts). Recommend to all who have an interest in earth sciences, and beyond.
Christina Wiseman
Interesting info

The author gives much information I either never knew, or was too young to care about. A great read for plane trips!
Lauren-Blair Donovan
Overall this a great book! I reviewed it thoroughly on my blog:
Michelle Chan
Jun 25, 2014 Michelle Chan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A great mix of history and geography. This book has an interesting presentation that includes many interesting facts I have never known.
Dec 02, 2015 Nic rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I liked this and will probably read more "Don't know much" books. I learned a lot and enjoyed myself.
Andy Goodman
Jun 04, 2014 Andy Goodman rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a great book for those like me who are looking to increase their geography knowledge for Jeopardy!
Cindy Dyson Eitelman
Don't Know Much About Geography was a book assignment for one of my high-school kids. I obediently bought a copy for him. I read the cover and decided I wanted to read it after he was done. I don't think he ever opened the book, but I just did.
Good points: the famous people quotes. The state name appendix. The comparative measures appendix (wish it had been longer.)
Bad points: face it--it's boring.
Full review:
Jun 04, 2014 LeeAnn rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: geography
Intriguing. A very truncated review of history as it is affected by geography and vice versa.
Excellent, very easy to read.All of his books are awesome.
May 19, 2014 Marcia rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I tried listening on books on tape, normally different voices help but it made it too hard for me to follow..
Mar 04, 2015 Ruth rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nonfiction, audio
Educational listen.
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Kenneth C. Davis is the New York Times bestselling author of the Don't Know Much About series of books and audios for adults and children. The first title in the series, Don't Know Much About History became a New York Times bestseller in 1991 and remained on the paperback list for 35 consecutive weeks. It has since been revised several times and now has more than 1.6 million copies in print.

He is
More about Kenneth C. Davis...

Other Books in the Series

Don't Know Much About (8 books)
  • Don't Know Much About the Bible: Everything You Need to Know About the Good Book but Never Learned
  • Don't Know Much About the Civil War: Everything You Need to Know About America's Greatest Conflict but Never Learned
  • Don't Know Much about History: Everything You Need to Know about American History But Never Learned
  • Don't Know Much About the Universe: Everything You Need to Know About Outer Space but Never Learned
  • Don't Know Much About Mythology: Everything You Need to Know About the Greatest Stories in Human History but Never Learned
  • Don't Know Much About Anything: Everything You Need to Know but Never Learned About People, Places, Events, and More!
  • Don't Know Much About Anything Else: Even More Things You Need to Know but Never Learned About People, Places, Events, and More!

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“Memorizing information is valuable but only if you're able to make some sense of the information and put it into a useful context. Isn't it much better if we can attach something tangible to that information?” 5 likes
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