Synopses & Reviews
New York Times
bestselling author and all-time Jeopardy!
champion Ken Jennings delivers a characteristically engaging and surprisingly useful new book, revealing the truth behind all the terrible things our parents used to warn us about.
Ken Jennings is here to tell us that mother and father didn’t always know best. Yes, all those years you were told not to sit too close to the television (you’ll go blind!), or swallow your gum (it stays in your stomach for seven years!), or crack your knuckles (arthritis!) are called into question by our country’s leading trivia guru. Jennings separates myth from fact to humorously debunk a wide variety of parental edicts: no swimming after meals, sit up straight, don’t talk to strangers, you’ll get worms from cookie dough, and so on.
Combining the Q&A tradition of Why Do Men Have Nipples? and the anti-helicopter parenting philosophy of The Dangerous Book for Boys, Jennings exposes countless examples of parental wisdom run amuck, armed with medical case histories, scientific findings, and even the occasional experiment on himself (or his kids). Whether you’re a parent who wants to know what you can stop worrying about or a kid (of any age) looking to say, “I told you so,” this is the book you've been waiting for.
"Jeopardy! champion Jennings (Maphead) tackles the not-so-trivial matters of parenting advice in his latest eye-opening book. With his trademark wit and genius, he dissects common phrases most adults say to their children at one time or another. Using solid research, he judges whether long-held beliefs are true or false. For example, are poinsettias really poisonous? Definitely not, he writes, citing a hilarious study to prove his point. Part entertainment and part informative, in a style that's reminiscent of a quiz show, he assures parents that most of the things we worry about won't hurt us at all. Talking to strangers isn't so dangerous and those silica gel packets in pill bottles won't kill anyone. Some of the topics don't sneeze or your eyeballs will fall out are obviously false, but he skillfully generates interest by telling the reader how these myths originated. And, of course, a few bits, like 'don't stare at the sun,' are true. Jennings imparts wisdom and good sense in this highly entertaining and oddly educational book." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Because I Said So! is the MythBusters of old wives' tales. But beware: it could be a dangerous book if it falls into the wrong hands; namely your kids'. All of us can look back on the cautionary admonitions our parents and grandparents used to shout at us when we were in the middle of fun, and now our suspicions that they were hokum are verified! But we have to keep this to ourselves. If our kids get a hold of this book, we'll have nothing left to kill their joy with. So buy this book, read it, and then hide it away!" Ken Denmead, New York Times bestselling author of Geek Dad
“A fun, lighthearted compendium of conventional wisdom, mostly parental, which debunks plenty of old wives’ tales and urban myths while offering a few surprising truths....‘Occasionally Mom knew what she was talking about,’ as this clever book confirms, but often she did not.” Kirkus Reviews
Don't cross your eyes or they'll stay like that!
Feed a cold, starve a fever!
Don't touch your Halloween candy until we get it checked out!
Never run with scissors!
Don't look in the microwave while it's running!
This will go down on your permanent record!
Is any of it true? If so, how true? Ken Jennings wants to find out if mother and father always know best. Yes, all those years you were told not to sit too close to the television (you'll hurt your eyes!) or swallow your gum (it stays in your stomach for seven years!) or crack your knuckles (arthritis!) are called into question by our country's leading trivia guru. Jennings separates myth from fact to debunk a wide variety of parental edicts: no swimming after meals, sit up straight, don't talk to strangers, and so on.
Armed with medical case histories, scientific findings, and even the occasional experiment on himself (or his kids), Jennings exposes countless examples of parental wisdom run amok. Whether you're a parent who wants to know what you can stop worrying about or a kid (of any age) looking to say, “I told you so,” this is the anti-helicopter parenting book you've been waiting for.
About the Author
Ken Jennings broke game show records in 2004 with his unprecedented seventy-four game, $2.52 million victory streak on Jeopardy!. Jennings’s book Brainiac, about his Jeopardy! adventures, was a critically acclaimed New York Times bestseller, as was his follow-up, Maphead. He is also the author of Ken Jennings’s Trivia Almanac. Jennings lives in Washington with his wife Mindy, his son Dylan and daughter Caitlin, and a deeply unstable Labrador retriever named Banjo.