Year of the Bookwormz: 2011

52 weeks. 2 friends. 1 challenge.

Book #30: Fabookulous September 4, 2010

The Intellectual Devotional: American History by David S. Kidder & Noah D. Oppenheim

Book description: Modeled after those bedside books of prayer and contemplation that millions turn to for daily spiritual guidance and growth, the national bestseller, The Intellectual Devotional-offering secular wisdom and cerebral nourishment- drew a year’s worth of readings from seven different fields of knowledge. In this follow-up volume, authors David S. Kidder and Noah D. Oppenheim have turned to the rich legacy of American history for their selections. From Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin to Martin Luther King Jr., from the Federalist Papers to Watergate, the giant figures, cultural touchstones, and pivotal events in our national heritage provide a bountiful source of reflection and education that will refresh knowledge, revitalize the mind, and open new horizons of intellectual discovery.

A fun (and random) selection for me, I checked this book out at the library to learn some trivia about American history. Many of the topics were familiar to me, but there were fun facts and interesting tidbits compiled in this book. This is designed like a daily devotional, with 365 entries so you have one to read every day of the year. The book even comes with that glossy ribbon place holder (a.k.a. bookmark) that you’ll also find in Bibles.

The Intellectual Devotionals are available in different topics to (as the cover says), “Revive Your Mind, Complete Your Education, and Converse Confidently…” Entries from seven fields of knowledge are available on: Health, Modern Culture, Biographies, and the original Intellectual Devotional. On the New York Times Bestseller list, these books are informative, interesting, educational, and well-written.

Here, a few nuggets of information you may (or may not) already have known:

  • Thomas Jefferson grew 31 kinds of fruit in his orchards at Monticello, including figs, peaches, cherries, and grapes.
  • More than 40 universities operate in the greater Boston area, making it the center of American higher education.
  • Benjamin Franklin is the only American who signed all three of the key founding documents of the United States: the Declaration of Independence, the Treaty of Paris that ended the Revolution, and the Constitution.
  • When he agreed to lead the Continental army in 1775, George Washington declined a salary, asking only that Congress reimburse his expenses.
  • Although Central Park is probably the most famous park in the United States, it was not the first; that distinction belongs to Boston Common, which opened in roughly 1634.
  • A 700-pound monument to barbed wire in McLean, Texas, is composed of two balls of barbed wire.
  • During wartime, men who could prove a religious or moral objection to all war, not just the war being fought, could avoid military service by earning classification as a “conscientious objector.”
  • When Cornelius Vanderbilt died, his estate, worth more than $100 million, exceeded the holdings of the United States Treasury.

If you are an American history buff, if you need to brush up on your American history, if you enjoy learning facts and trivia, then I’d recommend this book for you. Read one, read them all, the Intellectual Devotional books are valuable resources!

4/5 stars

Happy Reading,