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The 101 Most Influential People Who Never…
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The 101 Most Influential People Who Never Lived (2006)

by Dan Karlan, Allan Lazar, Jeremy Salter

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3932241,782 (3.03)18
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» See also 18 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 22 (next | show all)
wish more time was spent on actual analysis - but with few exceptions the authors relied more on tongue-in-cheek delivery of recapping the stories of the 101 characters. ( )
  eyelit | Mar 21, 2018 |
I have been looking forward to reading this one for quite some time. I expected to like it but thought that it might be a little dry in places. It exceeded my expectations. Each entry was of a fictional character, and the characters were grouped together into such topics as Folktales, Monsters, Literature, Movies, Commerce, Propaganda, etc. The background of the fictional character was discussed and why it was important. Lots of humor as well. I was familiar with 98% of the characters; here are a few: the Marlboro Man, Rosie the Riveter, Big Brother, Scrooge, HAL 9000, Godzilla. The book included a list of those that didn't make the list, and there were amusing interludes as to how the authors came up with the list, how they wrote the individual entries, etc. ( )
  LisaMorr | Jul 8, 2016 |
I was very disappointed in this book. I loved the premise and the list itself, but found the description of each character to be more of a commentary on the author's opinion than less on the history of the character and almost none of how society has been shaped/impacted by the existence of the fictional person. I don't care that the myth of Cinderella should not be taught to our daughters and certainly find it horribly subjective to call Adam the "first male chauvinist pig."

There was much potential here, only to be squandered by a group of authors more interested in writing of an OpEd and less of an informative, non-emotional book.

Not recommended. ( )
  CarmenMilligan | Jan 18, 2016 |
Subtitle: How Characters of Fiction, Myth, Legends, Television, and Movies Have Shaped Our Society, Changed Our Behavior, and Set the Course of History

I read this only because it was a book-club selection. The authors decided to put together a list of the most influential fictional characters/ icons from books, movies, television, and advertising. I don’t necessarily agree with their choices (No. 1 is The Marlboro Man), but more importantly, I really didn’t like how the book was organized and written. They spent far too many words trying to be cute and far too little time explaining how these characters influence America and Americans. There were a few interesting tidbits, for which I give it 1 star. Mostly, however, I was just bored. ( )
  BookConcierge | Jan 13, 2016 |
Interesting concept. Pick 101 "people" and write up a page or two on their backstory. Very US Centric, some of the research a bit uneven, but overall a neat concept. I had no idea about the back story for several, some I wouldn't have included at all (Buffy the Vampire Slayer??), and some I remember as being a definite buzz word at the time (Who Shot J.R.?) ( )
  nancynova | Aug 10, 2015 |
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» Add other authors (1 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Dan Karlanprimary authorall editionscalculated
Lazar, Allanmain authorall editionsconfirmed
Salter, Jeremymain authorall editionsconfirmed
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Dedicated to the artists who entertain, inform, and inspire. And to the memory of a nineteen-year-old cairn terrier.
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We believe so strongly in the characters of television, literature, and movies that we treat them as important people in our lives. (Preface)
It all started on a summer's night. (Beginnings: How We Got Into Writing This Book)
The following is our list of most influential characters, arranged in order of influence, most influential to least. (The 101 in Rank Order)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0061132217, Paperback)

From Santa Claus to Buffy the Vampire Slayer, from Uncle Sam to Uncle Tom, here is a compelling, eye-opening, and endlessly entertaining compendium of fictional trendsetters and world-shakers who have helped shape our culture and our lives. The 101 Most Influential People Who Never Lived offers fascinating histories of our most beloved, hated, feared, and revered invented icons and the indelible marks they made on civilization, including:

# 28: Rosie the Riveter, the buff, blue-collar factory worker who helped jump-start the Women's Liberation movement

# 7: Siegfried, the legendary warrior-hero of Teutonic nationalism responsible for propelling Germany into two world wars

# 80: Icarus, the headstrong high-flyer who inspired the Wright brothers and humankind's dreams of defying gravity . . . while demonstrating the pressing need for flight insurance

# 58: Saint Valentine, the hapless, de-canonized loser who lost his heart and head at about the same time

# 43: Barbie, the bodacious plastic babe who became a role model for millions of little girls, setting an impossible standard for beauty and style

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:22:35 -0400)

"From Santa Claus to Buffy the Vampire Slayer, from Uncle Sam to Uncle Tom, here is a compelling, eye-opening, and endlessly entertaining compendium of fictional trendsetters and world-shakers who have helped shape our culture and our lives. The 101 Most Influential People Who Never Lived offers fascinating histories of our most beloved, hated, feared, and revered invented icons and the indelible marks they made on civilization, including: # 28: Rosie the Riveter, the buff, blue-collar factory worker who helped jump-start the Women's Liberation movement # 7: Siegfried, the legendary warrior-hero of Teutonic nationalism responsible for propelling Germany into two world wars # 80: Icarus, the headstrong high-flyer who inspired the Wright brothers and humankind's dreams of defying gravity ... while demonstrating the pressing need for flight insurance # 58: Saint Valentine, the hapless, de-canonized loser who lost his heart and head at about the same time # 43: Barbie, the bodacious plastic babe who became a role model for millions of little girls, setting an impossible standard for beauty and style."--Publisher's website.Profiles many fictional figures from literature, myth, film, and other sources that have shaped society, culture, and the course of history, such as Rosie the Riveter, Lady Chatterly, Ebenezer Scrooge, and Hamlet.… (more)

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