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The New York Times Presents Smarter by Sunday: 52 Weekends of Essential Knowledge for the Curious Mind

3.8  ·  Rating details ·  132 Ratings  ·  19 Reviews
A handy, smaller, and more focused version of our popular New York Times knowledge books—organized by weekends and topic

Fell asleep during history class in high school when World War II was covered? Learned the table of elements at one time but have forgotten it since? Always wondered who really invented the World Wide Web? Here is the book for you, with all the answer
Hardcover, 560 pages
Published October 26th 2010 by St. Martin's Press (first published 2010)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Dec 27, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fun, 2011-reads
Still working on this one! Some weeks are harder than others to read...classical music weekend was a tough one for me, but this week is the computer revolution-hoping that it will be really good. My favorite so far was the weekend of Ancient Egypt.

Officially given up on this one...some chapters were ok, while others were a complete bore.
Mar 11, 2011 is currently reading it
So far, so good. I've only read the first few pages so far, but how nice to have Homer's "Iliad" summed up in three pages! I'll be brilliant by the time I finish this book -- or at least, I'll be rockin' Trivial Pursuit and Jeopardy.
Feb 17, 2017 rated it liked it
Some parts interesting. Some topics I knew well and skipped. Some parts were slow reading if the topic didn't really interest me. Overall glad I read it
Oct 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing

Today’s post is on Smarter by Sunday: 52 Weekends of Essential Knowledge for the Curious Mind by The New York Times. It is 500 pages long including an index. The cover is white with an apple cut into sections on it. The intended reader is someone who is very curious. There is no language, no sex, and no violence in this book. Because of the complex themes teens and adults would get the most out of this book. The chapters are told in third person. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the dust jacket- Fel
Apr 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
This book, composed by The New York Times, consisted of a series of 52 summaries of essential topics that a personal ideally should have some knowledge of. Each summary was between 1,500 and 2,000 words broken down into two applicable sections. As someone coming from an education background, I remember having discussions in my foundations of education class about the best way to both identify and implement a common body of knowledge that all our students should have before they graduate. I was a ...more
Molly Jean
I would give this 2.5 stars...I enjoyed a lot of it and the chapters were a manageable size for what it is attempting to do. But I was disappointed in the errors I found sprinkled throughout the book. I doubt they were errors in research, but were more likely the result of sloppy, careless or non-existent editing which is an all-too-common problem these days. None of the errors were earth shattering (except for maybe the location of Buddy Holly's death) but if someone like me can catch some mist ...more
Elaine B
Oct 18, 2011 rated it did not like it
I read only the first few chapters. I was disturbed and amazed by the number of factual errors. You would think the New York Times would be able to afford a fact checker. You would think the editor would have caught these simple errors. For example, Buddy Holly did not die in Wisconsin, General George Pickett did not lead Pickett's Charge. These and other errors made me wonder how many I missed, so I gave up on the book. Maybe a future edition will include better fact checking/editing.
Feb 06, 2012 added it
Shelves: non-fiction, history

Incredibly American centric but good summaries.
Delene H. Allen
Jul 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
Wow! I actually do feel smarter. The red ribbon book marker was a nice touch for this book that has stayed on my nightstand for 52 weekends.
Doug Reith
Mar 20, 2011 rated it really liked it
Fascinating. Little short reads on topics I learned a long time ago in school, but completely forgot.
Obiora Okwudili
Aug 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: history
Jun 15, 2015 rated it liked it
Some chapters were really good, but most were just too broad to be of any use.
Morgan Bresko
Jun 10, 2013 rated it liked it
Didn't quite finish the whole thing, more of a work in progress. :) Fun to check out though.
Apr 02, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
Loved it. Smartly-chosen topics and all the essential information
Aug 09, 2011 rated it liked it
Didn't finish - what I read was OK but it's not the kind of book I can read quickly - if I owned it instead of checking it out of the library I would have kept reading.
Feb 03, 2011 is currently reading it
Extremely detailed and very interesting. You really can't get through a chapter in one sitting unless you are already more than familiar with the subject.
Matt Gray
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Holli White
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Sep 05, 2011
TJ Bingham
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May 06, 2014
Sumit Dewan
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Oct 25, 2014
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The New York Times is a daily newspaper published in New York City and distributed internationally. Founded in 1851, the newspaper has won 112 Pulitzer Prizes, more than any other news organization. Its website receives 30 million unique visitors per month.
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