“Quackery: A Brief History of the Worst Ways to Cure Everything”: by Lydia Kang & Nate Pedersen

The information in this one is mind-blowing. It took quite a long time (for me) to finish this one, but it is probably the most quoted book I have read so far, maybe ever. I shared many of the facts and stories with many different friends in casual conversations because I found this entire tome completely fascinating (and the best way to know you truly have a concept/idea down is to teach it to others).

The contents page at the beginning let you know what the categories are and they are divided into five main sections. Elements, Plants & Soil, Tools, Animals, and finally Mysterious Powers.

The depth of research that went into this is impressive, but so is the light heartedness of the authors commentary scattered throughout.

Now to the glaring thing that did not work in this. Normally I don’t comment much on the inside style of a book. I will write about truly stunning and artistic cover art and in children’s illustrated books will reference the art sometimes, but rarely do I comment on the style itself.

I read this one on my phone app (pocketbook) since the format was not set for kindle. This happens occasionally, especially with books that feature a lot of illustrations like this did.

The problem is the coloring on the pages. The sides have this distracting lime green and the main sections have print on blue, green, and red(!) background pages that are hard on the eyes. This was the only drawback of the entire work, but it was a huge one in my opinion. I understand the trying to be an eye catcher element for people who may be browsing this in a bookstore and pick it up. Bright colors draw people in. It may not keep them there…

The facts presented show as a species how we have grown over the years and where the origins of many “quack” ideas stemmed from. I was hooked on this.

Quackery is information heavy and I think books of this nature tend to be better served for the reader in small chunks. Learning new ideas and letting them sink in takes time, and that time I feel was well spent. I have all sorts of new information/knowledge that I didn’t have prior to reading this (and things I did know were further reinforced).

I would highly recommend this for anyone that enjoys learning, that wants to know more about strange historical beginnings of modern medicine today, and who wants to be able to bring up random facts in conversation. It’s a winner. Just maybe hold your hands over the sides to block that lime green color and you should be fine.

Quick Facts:

Page Count: 352

Format: Hardcover

Genre: Health, Mind, Body

Publisher: Workman Publishing Company

Expected Publication Date: October 17th, 2017

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