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Urban Legends: 666 Absolutely True Stories…

Urban Legends: 666 Absolutely True Stories That Happened to a Friend...of… (edition 2005)

by Thomas J. Craughwell

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Title:Urban Legends: 666 Absolutely True Stories That Happened to a Friend...of a Friend...of a Friend
Authors:Thomas J. Craughwell
Info:Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers (2005), Paperback, 688 pages
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Urban Legends: 666 Absolutely True Stories That Happened to a Friend...of a Friendof a Friend by Thomas J. Craughwell



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This collection of urban legends contains not just the usual poodle-in-the-microwave, killer's-hook-on-the-car-door and spiders-in-the-hairdo tales, but also ghost stories, UFO sightings, e-mail scams, celebrity rumors, and just about anything else you can think of that could possibly come under the "urban folklore" heading. They're told very simply and without any attempt at analysis or verification/debunking, except for a short introduction and the occasional note about where a story originated or what variations exist. I think the author makes a bit of a mistake by making up lots of dialog for these stories, though, as it's very stilted and puts the style somewhere between the casual "so, then the guy goes" speech that you'd get with actual oral retellings and a genuine attempt at literary dramatization. It's not a very comfortable middle ground.

Still, I found the first hundred pages or so fun to read, even though I'd already heard a lot of these before. Some of them are such great stories, with such perfect little ironic twists, that you can't help almost wishing they were true. After a while, though, I found myself getting rather bored. I don't know if that's because the best stories are to be found towards the front of the book and the editor started scraping further towards the bottom of the barrel after that, or if it's just that there's a limit to how many of these I really want to read, even in bite-sized chunks. ( )
  bragan | Dec 23, 2011 |
This book is really three of Thomas' books smooshed together. I was pretty disappointed when I got it because I had two of them already and was planning on using this as airport reading.It's still a great read though. Fun, entertaining. It also isn't quick to debunk a story, this book gives you an idea where the story may have come from. Personally when I buy Urban Legend books I'm not looking for the author to tell me how stupid and wrong the story is. So this one is a really good read. ( )
  gwentastic | Jan 11, 2009 |
Urban Legends: 666 Absolutely True Stories That Happened to a Friend...of A Friend...Of A Friend - I can't help it. I love urban legends and tales of the weird and macabre. The 001's and 398's are my favorite sections of non-fiction. And this collection of UL's didn't disappoint. Sure, there was the ubiquitous "spiders in the beehive" but also plenty that I'd never heard before, like "The Slasher Under the Car" which involves frat boys with a shoe fetish making pledges hide underneath cars. When a woman wearing a tasty pair of shoes stands next to the car, the pledge slashes her ankles, causing her to fall to the ground in fear and pain, while he slides out from under the car and makes off with the shoes. Lots of light, amusing reading here folks. ( )
  PatriciaUttaro | Oct 5, 2006 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0760762112, Hardcover)

Whether you believe them or not, you'll find yourself compulsively reading every one of these urban legends just to see what could possibly happen next. For, as outlandish as they are, they often ring true. From corpses coming alive a lasting impression and you'll find yourself telling them over and over again.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:24:09 -0400)

Combining Black Dogs three very successful hardcover collections of urban legends (Alligators in the Sewer, The Baby on the Car Roof, and The Cat in the Dryer) into one stupendous volume, Urban Legends is the ultimate collection of those outlandish tales people love to share. With themes that run the gamut from funny to sick, risque to informative, frightening to disgusting, these fantastic yarns are remarkable for their uncanny ability to travel by word of mouth. Weve all heard the one about the alligators that roam New York Citys sewers, or how Mikey of Life Cereal fame died from ingesting Pop Rocks and Coke, or about the flustered parents who left their baby on the car roof. But, did you hear the one about the scuba diver who was found in the middle of a forest after a fire? These and other favorites are here in all of their creepy glory guaranteed to amuse, enlighten, intrigue, and most of all, stick in the mind forever.… (more)

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