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The Worst-Case Scenario Almanac: History    by Joshua Piven, David Borgenicht & Piers Marchant order for
Worst-Case Scenario Almanac: History
by Joshua Piven
Order:  USA  Can
Chronicle, 2006 (2006)

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* *   Reviewed by Martina Bexte

What if The Great Ice Age, or the Crusades, or Benedict Arnold's various problems could have been fixed or avoided altogether simply by having the problem studied and addressed by a couple of knowledgeable experts? The authors of this slim, interesting and often amusing book explain that 'the only way to be truly prepared for what you might have to deal with in the future is to be prepared for what people had to deal with in the past ... what can happen to you in the next 24 hours barely registers on the scales of history when weighed against all the truly terrible things that have happened over the last five thousand or millions of years'.

To that end they take you on a quick tour through history's pivotal moments, selecting major events, situations, customs, dress codes, jobs and even medical disasters. They explain in short point form what to do if faced with one or more similar situations - like say, being cornered in an empty parking lot by some sword wielding madman claiming he's Attila the Hun. Also included are many red-bordered pages that provide encapsulated account of the Who's Who of the Worst like Nebuchadnezzar II, Caligula, Genghis Khan, Ivan the Terrible and Joseph Stalin to name just a few. Black bordered pages offer a thumbnail sketch of Highlights of history like The Classical World, The Renaissance, the Early Modern World and the Age of Enlightenment.

Ever wondered how to successfully defend a castle against an all out siege? It's all laid out for you. Learning about the Worst Jobs of the Industrial Revolution could help you in your current job search, just as knowing the worst Medieval Baby Names might help you decide what moniker to scribble onto your new baby daughter's birth certificate. Perhaps you'd like to learn how to lead an army across a river without being noticed? The authors give a crash course. Quotes, diagrams, and oodles of other interesting historical facts make Worst Case Scenario Almanac: History an interesting, educational and all around fun reading experience.

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