Listified: Britannica’s 300 Lists That Will Blow Your Mind by Andrew Pettie, illustrated by Andrés Lozano. Britannica, 2021. 9781912920754
Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 5
What did you like about the book? Remember how much we all loved The Book of Lists when it first came out in 1977? Perhaps you thought the Internet would have made such a book obsolete in 2021, but you’d be wrong. In this delightful, droll, and very heavy book, Andrew Pettie has made the kind of lists that are sure to fascinate young readers ages 6 to 12. Chapters include Space, Nature, Dinosaur Times, Animals, The Body, Being Human, Inventions, and Game Changers and are rounded out with a glossary, index, list of sources, and picture credits. Puns abound: “World Wide Web” tells us about huge, communal spider webs, “Get A Move On” tells us how many muscles your body uses to do things, and “Fear Factor” lists thirty phobias. The book is filled with cartoon illustrations, maps, charts and diagrams, in a bright color palette, featuring men, women, and people of various races, ages, and abilities. Really, there’s no boring pages! I learned about the 5 things scientists would need to clone a T-Rex, the percentage of DNA I share with other animals (and fruit), 12 wise sayings of Laozi, and 8 of the smelliest things on the planet. Charming, busy endpapers show everything in the world in miniature, from sharks to Slinkies to jetpacks.
Anything you didn’t like about it? No
To whom would you recommend this book? Obviously, a great book for browsing and thus it could live happily in a classroom. As an item to borrow, I predict it would be out continually in any elementary school library and maybe even in a middle school! If a class wanted to design a school trivia contest as an activity, this would be a great and authoritative resource.
Who should buy this book? Elementary, middle and public libraries
Where would you shelve it? I know most of us are in the process of eliminating reference, so I’d suggest circulating it and having it live at 032.02.
Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? No
Reviewer: Susan Harari, Keefe Library, Boston Latin School, Boston, MA
Date of review: August 18, 2021