The World Almanac and Book of Facts 2009

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Product Description

New for 2009—The World Almanac and Book of Facts includes the most comprehensive 2008 U.S. election results, tallied through November 7th, and World Series statistics. Every family needs this New York Times best-selling reference book.

The World Almanac is the #1 best-selling American reference book of all time. It is the source for essential and authoritative facts for entertainment, reference and learning. The book contains thousands of facts and statistics that aren’t publicly available which are sourced and double-checked by the staff of World Almanac experts.

The 2008 Edition spent 12 weeks on the NYT Bestseller list reaching #2; 10 weeks on the USA Today Bestseller List reaching #51; and 9 weeks on the Book Sense List reaching a high of #11.

Features in The World Almanac and Book of Facts 2009:

The World at a Glance: The most fascinating facts of the past year in science, economics, sports, arts and media, and more

Election 2008 Coverage and Results: Twenty-four pages dedicated to the complete coverage of key issues, pivotal primaries, memorable moments, and election results from the presidential campaign.

Beijing Olympics Recap: faces, Places and records from the Summer 2008 games.

World Series: For the first time in 5 years, the World Almanac will contain facts covering the World Series.

Year in Pictures: 16 page color photo section of the top stories of 2008, as well as 16 pages of world maps and flags and easy-to-use side abs.

, Plus thousands of facts and statistics that aren’t publicly available; sourced and double-checked by our full-time editorial staff who are reference experts by category

Downloadable World Almanac Trivia Quiz Night Kit: All that you need to host a quiz night in your local pub, bookstore, or classroom. Our editors provide over 150 questions and answers - all derived from The World Almanac 2009. Have fun, fundraise, or draw a crowd with this turn-key party kit!

World Almanac Online:

2009 will feature the third year of Bonus Content Online, extended reading to the printed edition for the same combined price of $12.99. This year will feature the Election Results from 2008, plus lots more free information available year-round at historical presidential information, health news and features, and early access to WA09 info.

Once online, look for The World Almanac Blog, launched in 2006 and every weekday featuring

, New original entries, including provocative postings such as Unbreakable Sports Records; fascinating scientific and historical trivia; and new links to online tools and archives for almanac fans , This Day in History, Notable Birthdays and unusual anniversaries such as when Nixon met Elvis Presley in the Oval Office (1970)

, More useful links and tags to essential reads

Customer Reviews:

  • What fun! What a source of information!
    Each year, I look forward to this volume. I love the masses of trivia and minutiae contained within the pages of this book. I literally find it fun to rifle through the pages and see what tidbits are there. For those unfamiliar with this publication, it provides facts and figures on all manner of things--from the state of the economy to election results to sports to flags and maps to historical facts (e.g., the roster of American presidents) to science and technology (e.g., disasters) and so on. A cornucopia of facts and factoids.

    One things I do when I first receive this is to literally randomly select pages and see what is there. For this review, I'll do something similar. The first page that I came up with was the results of Congressional elections in 2008 (Pages 13 and following). Another page that popped up? Pages 95 and following, speaking of portraits on treasury bills and other products from the government (Did you know that George Washington shows up on $50 savings bonds? I did not.). Or that Abraham Lincoln is on $1,000 treasury notes? Imagine how popular one might be at a cocktail party with such trivia!

    Pages 246 and following focuses on "Writers of the past." Of particular interest to me is a family legend. One branch of my family came from Varmland in Sweden and some bore the name Lagerloff. Needless to say, some in my family claimed the Nobel prize winner Selma Lagerloff as a family representative. True? I don't know, but many families enjoy thinking of a luminary in the family tree.

    On pages 295 and the following is the category "Awards, Medals, and Prizes," including--oddly enough--Nobel prizes. I get another chance to luxuriate in the family legend, with Selma Lagerloff having been the 1909 literature winner. Also listed are Pulitzer Prize winners, Miss America winners, Emmy winners, and the like. It's simply fun to go through the winners over time and recall some of one's special favorites. It often triggers wonderful memories!

    An odd subject that showed up in my random walk through the pages of this 1000+ page work--taxes. There is discussion of recent tax legislation, meeting with your tax preparer, income tax rates and brackets, and state tax rates. On pages 524 and following, there are mini-biographies of American Presidents from Franklin Delano Roosevelt onward.

    I cheated when I randomly came upon state and county populations. I checked out my home county, Henry County in Illinois, to see how things stood. Bummer. A decline of about 1,500 souls from 2000 to 2007.

    Enough. The point is well made by the preceding. If you are interested in data and information, to get a better handle on the world around you, this is a fine work. Each year, I await the arrival of the latest volume and am seldom disappointed. This year was not a disappointment!
    ...more info
  • A must have for crossword puzzle nut
    Being a trivia and crossword puzzle nut, I look forward to getting a new almanac every year. It's absolutely loaded with information you never even knew you needed or wanted. ...more info
  • I buy this every year
    for my daughter, but I think I may look at it more often than she does. Even with the internet it's handy to have. Can look up things while reading in bed!...more info
  • Quicker than searching online
    The World Almanac and Book of Facts 2009

    I buy a new World Almanac every year and keep it within arm's reach of my favorite seat on the couch. That way, it's at hand during conversations or while watching TV whenever we want to look something up. The detailed index gets you to the answer you need within seconds, as opposed to going to the computer and searching online and then trying to select the best answer from the results. I've been known, when visiting friends and when a question comes up, to ask, "Where's your World Almanac??"...more info
  • A must have for every family
    This book is a must for every household. Information found here and no where else. Great book for immigrants to read and learn about any subject, also students of any grade level. Highly recomend it....more info
  • Almanac
    This is the best almanac by far. I having been buying it for the last 40 years and always find it useful when I want to do research....more info
  • Knowledge Source
    This Almanac offers a "world" of information. It has historical information, current facts and is a very interesting read....more info
  • I buy this book every year
    For the 25th consecutive year I have purchased the World Almanac. In my opinion it is the ultimate reference book for a wide variety of subjects. However I am disappointed with the comparison of Jeremiah Wright with John Hagee in the year in pictures section. Wright a close associate of Barak Obama hates America, in contrast John Hagee who merely endorsed John McCain was called Anti-Semetic. This is completely false, it is well documented he is one Israel's strongest supporters. Do your homework book of facts!...more info
  • Very Disappointed
    As a purchaser and frequent user of THE WORLD ALMANAC for over thirty years, this is the first time I can recall being so disappointed and annoyed with this wonderful compendium of facts. Following is why.

    The 2009 WORLD ALMANAC has made some major changes in the U.S. population, zip codes, area codes and metropolitan area rankings data which are included. This is all information I use frequently and among the first I checked.

    1. Previous issues included U.S. population statistics by state for Places 5,000 Population or More (i.e. by town). Last year, data by town included 1990 population, 2006 population estimate, area code and zip code. Instead of updating with 2000 census data compared to the 2007 estimate, the entire section was eliminated.

    2. Re zip codes, the only ones included are for Outlying Areas only such as the Northern Marianas and Guam. Useful to be sure, by some, but much more useful to most would be zip codes for the 50 states. Not an unreasonable expectation since most of those purchasing this book live in one of those 50 states.

    3. Re area codes, the only ones provided are sorted by the area code itself followed by the state to which it is assigned. Not very useful if one wants to find the area code for a specific city or how many area codes exist for a particular state. One must conduct a time-consuming search through all columns and to find them all, making notes along the way. Area codes were included this was way last year, however it was not such a big deal because they were also available categorized by state and town. It is a big deal now because this is the only area code information provided.

    4. U.S. Metropolitan Area population rankings were also eliminated. This was very useful since it provided populations for 1990, 2000 and the 2006 estimate. Importantly, it also ranked the Metros by population. A great tool and metro growth indicator. These rankings were replaced by an alphabetical listing of Metropolitan & Micropolitan Statistical Areas. This replacement section does provide updated population statistics but limits data to two years and would be more appreciated if it were available in tandem with a metro ranking.

    For my ALMANAC uses, I must now keep both the 2009 and 2008 issues readily available. Last year's slightly dated information is still better than 2009 with its omissions.

    No longer will the WORLD ALMANAC be my default almanac purchase. I will now check the others to see which ones best suit my needs. This is one very annoyed formerly loyal user.

    ...more info
  • Summing up
    If an alien landed in Idaho and wanted to learn about the strange place it had dropped in on, this is the book it should start with. After picking up a pair of reading glasses.

    The typeface is definitely on the small side, but don't let that stop you. This book is amazing. It has more information stuffed into it than you'll believe, it fits easily into your hand and it's not too heavy. It's way smaller than a Harry Potter book, and has about a million words.

    My favorite sections are at the beginning of the book, with the top news stories of the year, and good coverage of the election. A page called The World at a Glance is fascinating. For example, did you know the world's most popular tourist destination? France, with 91.9 million annual arrivals. Did you know that in 2008 U.S. farmers grew less than half the quantity of tobacco they grew in 1990? Did you know that Game 5 of the World Series was the first World Series game ever suspended due to rain?

    Everything is in plain old black and white, except for three color sections: The Year in Pictures (divided into two parts) and a collection of world maps and flags. Even the pages with just black ink have lots of photos, and tables and lists galore.

    You can even download a "quiz night kit" at the book's website so you can use this book to prove that you are the smartest person in the room. It has dozens of questions in seven different categories, game instructions, even signs and invitations to advertise your party. What a blast!

    Here's the chapter list:

    Special Features
    * Top Ten News Topics of 2008
    * The World at a Glance

    Election 2008

    2008: Year in Review
    * Chronology of the Year's Events
    * Obituaries
    * Offbeat News Stories
    * 2008 Time Capsule
    * Historical Anniversaries
    * Notable Supreme Court Decisions
    * The Economic Crisis of 2008
    * The Year in Pictures

    Economy, Business & Energy
    Military Affairs
    Health & Vital Statistics
    Personalities, Arts & Media
    Science & Technology
    Consumer Information
    U.S. Government
    U.S. Facts, History & Elections
    U.S. Cities, States & Population
    World History & Culture
    General Index...more info
  • Better than the Translation of the Bible.
    Mankind took a great step by getting an honest translation of the Bible. Before that time the Pope ruled everything to the distress of all mankind. This Almanac frees mankind of all the lies. People who value the truth will value this book. Thanks to you GOD almighty!

    We have now found the end of times. There is nothing left for us except Armageddon. The end is coming with thermal nuclear weaponry. All living creatures will be destroyed unless the end is cut short. ...more info
  • The Best Almanac
    The World Almanac has been published since the nineteenth century, and for good reason--it is a great reference book. My favorite parts of the almanac are the sports section, the meteorological data, and the county-by-county presidential election returns. There is also statistical data for major U.S. cities, for each state in the Union, and for each nation in the world. Also included are factoids and data for all kinds of categories such as the economy, entertainment personalities, vital statistics, education, religion, astronomy, and much, much more. One could spend a long time browsing the material in the almanac....more info
  • Still the Standard But
    Still the best -- the standard by which all almanac style reference books are judged but not as good as it was in the past. Ease of finding material and the content both have declined in quality....more info
  • The standard in almanacs
    There are many imitators on the market, some of them quite good, but this almanac has set the standard for more than a century. The New York World newspaper began publishing an almanac in 1868, "a 120-page volume with 12 pages of advertising." The newspaper suspended the almanac's publication in 1876, but publisher Joseph Pulitzer revived it in 1886 as a "compendium of universal knowledge." The almanac has been published annually since, outliving the newspaper whose name it still bears. (The World Almanac is not the oldest almanac in publication, though: that distinction belongs to The Old Farmer's Almanac, which is "North America's oldest continuously published periodical," founded in 1792.)

    The World Almanac contains much useful information that belongs in any serious basic-reference set. For the world, the almanac presents basic statistics about each nation, and about the world's major religions; and summarizes the world's history, with more detailed histories of the United States and of the preceding year. For the United States, the almanac reprints the nation's organic documents, the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution; lists every county (or parish or division) and county seat, and detailed population statistics; contains a directory of the entire Federal government; presents basic statistics about each state and major city, and a short biography of each president; and much more. The almanac also contains bountiful information about education, science, sports, and many other topics.

    The 2009 edition does differ in a few important respects from other recent editions -- sometimes for the better, sometimes not. For the better, the 2009 edition did not go to print until early November, and so contains complete results from the U.S. Presidential election and the World Series. (The preceding year's news had been ending earlier and earlier in recent editions: in the 1999 edition the last entry was 3 November 1998, in the 2004 edition it was 16 October 2003, and in the 2008 edition it was 12 October 2007.) On the down side, the 2009 almanac dispenses with the longtime feature listing every community with a population over 5000, with its ZIP code and area code.

    Overall, though, the 2009 World Almanac continues to set the standard, and is well worth the price. No other single volume offers such a wealth of information on such a variety of subjects....more info
  • World Almanac
    The World Almanac is an essential part of my library. I get an updated version every year. It's a resource whose convenience is even better than Wikipedia....more info
  • Always excellent
    The almanac is excellent every year. I use it constantly, year-round - never know when I might have to check for a useful fact....more info
  • This is still THE best book of it's kind.
    I have bought copies of some of the other yearly almanacs out there and The World Almanac is consistantly the best. I have bought this book for many years now and it is amazing how much I learn from it's contents. If you do not own an almanac, buy this one and enjoy!!...more info
  • The World Almanac
    I bought it for a present but caught myself looking through it. It has so many fun and trivial facts, I may have to buy one for myself. ...more info
  • book
    this was a very good book, and i recived really fast. it was a gift i got my son each year and i forgot it. i do not drive so i could not get to a store. very good...more info
  • Buy one every year
    Always good to have on hand. Don't know how many times we have picked this up to solve a trivia question. ...more info
  • puzzle help
    Wonderful for solving crossword puzzles. It is also
    better for this than other almanacs I have tried. I recommend to my friends who are fellow puzzle addicts....more info


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