How They Choked: Failures, Flops, and Flaws of the Awfully Famous

How They Choked: Failures, Flops, and Flaws of the Awfully Famous


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The team behind the bestselling How They Croaked shines a light on the darker sides of history’s most famous failures, perfect for reluctant readers!

Everyone makes mistakes. Sometimes, epic failures even lead to super successes . . . sometimes they become deep dark secrets. But remember--to fail is human, to laugh about our shortcomings divine. From Montezuma II’s mistaking a conqueror for a god to Isaac Newton turning from science to alchemy to J. Bruce Ismay’s jumping the lifeboat line on the Titanic, How They Choked knocks fourteen famous achievers off their pedestals to reveal the human side of history.

Successful "failures" include: Marco Polo, Queen Isabella of Spain, Montezuma II, Ferdinand Magellan, Anne Boleyn, Isaac Newton, Benedict Arnold, Susan B. Anthony, George Armstrong Custer, Thomas Alva Edison, Vincent van Gogh, J. Bruce Ismay, "Shoeless Joe" Jackson, Amelia M. Earhart

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781681192161
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA
Publication date: 06/07/2016
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 208
Sales rank: 220,508
Product dimensions: 7.00(w) x 10.00(h) x 0.80(d)
Age Range: 10 - 14 Years

About the Author

GEORGIA BRAGG is the author of How They Croaked as well as Matisse on the Loose, a middle-grade novel. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, two children, and two cats.

KEVIN O'MALLEY is the illustrator of How They Croaked and the co-author and illustrator of the popular Miss Malarkey series, the New York Times bestseller Gimme Cracked Corn and I Will Share, and many other books for children. He lives in Maryland.

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How They Choked: Failures, Flops, and Flaws of the Awfully Famous 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
YoungMensanBookParade More than 1 year ago
Did you know that one of the most famous pilots in history never even bothered to actually learn how to fly a plane? Or that Queen Isabella of Spain, who funded Christopher Columbus' expedition to the New World, was a ruthless person who murdered thousands in the Spanish Inquisition (that she started in the first place!) just because of their faith? I sure didn't. The author just kept on surprising me, because even if I did know the facts, she phrased it in such a way, that I felt like I was discovering them all over again. At first, I was thinking, "Wait, there's no way this is true...these people are heroes, they can't mess up like this!" But, as unlikely as it may seem, it truly is nonfiction. The author, Georgia Bragg, mainly geared it towards the 8-12 age group, but it doesn't really matter, because even my mom was absorbed in it at the same level as I was. Both boys & girls will enjoy it just the same. Because, as the book says, “There’s nothing better than reading about how someone messed up!” A lot of the people featured in the stories are people we consider idols. Some of them are Thomas Alva Edison, Amelia Earhart, and Isaac Newton. But, there are also some “bad guys” in it, such as Benedict Arnold, and George Armstrong Custer. The illustrator, Kevin O’Malley, created drawings and sketches that are humorous, and unique. They help the reader understand some of the terms used in the book. I thought that it was really amazing, but it could have had a glossary to help younger readers understand what Mrs. Bragg is saying. She provides several sources for further research at the end of the book, which is helpful if you want to learn more about the people featured in it. However, it is a sequel to the book How They Croaked: The Awful Ends of the Awfully Famous. Some people might feel that the first one was much better than this one. But, I think that the writing styles are the same, and they both make history equally enjoyable. I give it five stars, because it was definitely something I would read over and over again, without ever getting tired of it. Overall, this book is a terrific wake-up call to people who think that history is free of failures, mistakes and complete flops. Think again! Salonee V, age 10, Metropolitan Washington Mensa
Mikes_Dad More than 1 year ago
Start with How the Croaked.  It's much better.  Both are worth owning, but How they Croaked had me laughing out load.  This one didn't hold up in the same way.