Remembering Puns #35

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Remembering Puns

A lot of brave men fought and died in San Antonio, Texas, which is Alamo reason to remember

Way back when, I used to remember things by tying a string around my finger. Even then I had digital memory.

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I went to Cairo, but I don’t remember if I saw the river or not. I wonder if I am senile

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I can’t remember ever getting nits as a kid, although I do have a lousy memory.

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My friend had amnesia and couldn’t remember how to walk up the stairs, so I had to go back and teach him step by step.

When entering a funeral home, remember to stay alert and always look alive!

I couldn’t quite remember how to throw a boomerang, but eventually it came back to me.

He couldn’t remember the pill’s name but it was on the tip of his tongue.

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‘Did you remember to buy me the coffee with ice cream inside it?’. ‘Oh I’m sorry, affogato!’

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Remembering Puns

#35

Ray Bradbury – Forward Thinker, Mind Tinkerer

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Ray Bradbury Quotes

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“I don’t talk things, sir. I talk the meaning of things.”
― Ray Bradbury

“You don’t have to burn books to destroy a culture. Just get people to stop reading them.”
― Ray Bradbury

“Without libraries what have we? We have no past and no future.”
― Ray Bradbury

“Anything you dream is fiction, and anything you accomplish is science, the whole history of mankind is nothing but science fiction.”
― Ray Bradbury

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“I have never listened to anyone who criticized my taste in space travel, sideshows or gorillas. When this occurs, I pack up my dinosaurs and leave the room.”
― Ray Bradbury

“The minute you get a religion you stop thinking. Believe in one thing too much and you have no room for new ideas.”
― Ray Bradbury

“You must stay drunk on writing so reality cannot destroy you.”
― Ray Bradbury

“Why is it,” he said, one time, at the subway entrance, “I feel I’ve known you so many years?”
“Because I like you,” she said, “and I don’t want anything from you.”
― Ray Bradbury

“Stuff your eyes with wonder, he said, live as if you’d drop dead in ten seconds. See the world. It’s more fantastic than any dream made or paid for in factories.”
― Ray Bradbury

“Some people turn sad awfully young. No special reason, it seems, but they seem almost to be born that way. They bruise easier, tire faster, cry quicker, remember longer and, as I say, get sadder younger than anyone else in the world. I know, for I’m one of them.”
Ray Bradbury

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“Learning to let go should be learned before learning to get. Life should be touched, not strangled. You’ve got to relax, let it happen at times, and at others move forward with it.”
― Ray Bradbury

“I’m seventeen and I’m crazy. My uncle says the two always go together. When people ask your age, he said, always say seventeen and insane.”
― Ray Bradbury

“Bees do have a smell, you know, and if they don’t they should, for their feet are dusted with spices from a million flowers.”
― Ray Bradbury

“There is more than one way to burn a book. And the world is full of people running about with lit matches.”
― Ray Bradbury

“We need not to be let alone. We need to be really bothered once in a while. How long is it since you were really bothered? About something important, about something real?”
― Ray Bradbury

“We are cups, constantly and quietly being filled. The trick is, knowing how to tip ourselves over and let the beautiful stuff out.”
― Ray Bradbury

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“You must write every single day of your life… You must lurk in libraries and climb the stacks like ladders to sniff books like perfumes and wear books like hats upon your crazy heads… may you be in love every day for the next 20,000 days. And out of that love, remake a world.”
― Ray Bradbury

“A good night sleep, or a ten minute bawl, or a pint of chocolate ice cream, or all three together, is good medicine.”
― Ray Bradbury

“If you hide your ignorance, no one will hit you and you’ll never learn.”
― Ray Bradbury

“So few want to be rebels anymore. And out of those few, most, like myself, scare easily.”
― Ray Bradbury

“If we listened to our intellect we’d never have a love affair. We’d never have a friendship. We’d never go in business because we’d be cynical: “It’s gonna go wrong.” Or “She’s going to hurt me.” Or,”I’ve had a couple of bad love affairs, so therefore . . .” Well, that’s nonsense. You’re going to miss life. You’ve got to jump off the cliff all the time and build your wings on the way down.”
― Ray Bradbury

“Oh God, the terrible tyranny of the majority. We all have our harps to play. And it’s up to you to know with which ear you’ll listen.”
― Ray Bradbury

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“With school turning out more runners, jumpers, racers, tinkerers, grabbers, snatchers, fliers, and swimmers instead of examiners, critics, knowers, and imaginative creators, the word ‘intellectual,’ of course, became the swear word it deserved to be.”
― Ray Bradbury

“I don’t believe in colleges and universities. I believe in libraries because most students don’t have any money. When I graduated from high school, it was during the Depression and we had no money. I couldn’t go to college, so I went to the library three days a week for 10 years.”
― Ray Bradbury

“Love. Fall in love and stay in love. Write only what you love, and love what you write. The word is love. You have to get up in the morning and write something you love, something to live for.”
― Ray Bradbury

“You have to know how to accept rejection and reject acceptance.”
― Ray Bradbury

“Insanity is relative. It depends on who has who locked in what cage.”
― Ray Bradbury

“There must be something in books, something we can’t imagine, to make a woman stay in a burning house; there must be something there. You don’t stay for nothing.”
― Ray Bradbury

“Don’t think. Thinking is the enemy of creativity. It’s self-conscious and anything self-conscious is lousy. You can’t “try” to do things. You simply “must” do things.”
― Ray Bradbury

“We are an impossibility in an impossible universe.”
― Ray Bradbury

“Don’t ask for guarantees. And don’t look to be saved in any one thing, person, machine, or library. Do your own bit of saving, and if you drown, at least die knowing you were heading for shore.”
― Ray Bradbury

Image result for ray bradbury art“The good writers touch life often. The mediocre ones run a quick hand over her. The bad ones rape her and leave her for the flies.”
― Ray Bradbury

“It was a pleasure to burn.”
― Ray Bradbury

“Insanity is relative. It depends on who has who locked in what cage.”
― Ray Bradbury

“We cannot tell the precise moment when friendship is formed. As in filling a vessel drop by drop, there is at last a drop which makes it run over; so in a series of kindnesses there is at last one which makes the heart run over.”
― Ray Bradbury

“The magic is only in what books say, how they stitched the patches of the universe together into one garment for us.”
― Ray Bradbury

“First you jump off the cliff and build your wings on the way down.”
― Ray Bradbury

“There’s no use going to school unless your final destination is the library.”
― Ray Bradbury

“I still love books. Nothing a computer can do can compare to a book. You can’t really put a book on the Internet. Three companies have offered to put books by me on the Net, and I said, ‘If you can make something that has a nice jacket, nice paper with that nice smell, then we’ll talk.’ All the computer can give you is a manuscript. People don’t want to read manuscripts. They want to read books. Books smell good. They look good. You can press it to your bosom. You can carry it in your pocket.”
― Ray Bradbury

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“I have two rules in life – to hell with it, whatever it is, and get your work done.”
― Ray Bradbury

“A book is a loaded gun in the house next door…Who knows who might be the target of the well-read man?”
― Ray Bradbury

“Your intuition knows what to write, so get out of the way.”
― Ray Bradbury

“It doesn’t matter what you do…so long as you change something from the way it was before you touched it into something that’s like you after you take your hands away.”
― Ray Bradbury


Ray Bradbury

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– Forward Thinker, Mind Tinkerer

Getting to Know You – Without Permission

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Seemingly Innocent Things

That Reveal Shocking

Amounts of Information

About You

We live in the digital age, and it has never been easier for… well, anyone to find out all your dirty little secrets. While we expect agencies like the NSA, the FBI, and Google to know a terrifying amount about us, there are a bunch more innocuous things that a person with the right know-how can use to learn things about you or the people around you that you’d never expect. For example…

 10. Your Netflix Ratings Can Reveal if You’re Gay

Netflix is a great service. For a few bucks a month you get unlimited access to a constantly changing library of content, most of which is tailored towards you. Netflix does this with a number of algorithms that take into account what you watch, for how long, and what overall rating you gave it, and then compares it with similar data from other customers.

It would seem that the only real thing you’d be able to tell about someone from their Netflix habits would be what kind of movies they like, and which celebrity they have a crush on. However, by simply cross-referencing the data Netflix has with other sources (for example movie reviews on IMDb), it is shockingly easy to discern someone’s actual identity from a list of movies they liked. It is then possible to extrapolate from this data and determine someone’s sexuality, political affiliations, and where they live.

As unlikely as this sounds, a team of researchers in 2009, taking part in a competition with Netflix to improve their algorithms, were able to learn all this and more about a bunch of customers. One of these customers later sued Netflix because the data (which was completely anonymous) revealed that she was gay, something she hadn’t even told her family, and she was worried it could be used to out her before she personally felt comfortable doing so. Then again, the lady in question had children, so we’re guessing she could have denied being gay fairly easily if she wasn’t ready to tell someone. It’s for this reason that we highly advise rating every film you see on Netflix arbitrarily to throw them off in the future. Hey, speaking of politics!

9. Owning a Cat is an Indicator of Your Political Views

ike choosing a video game console, or how you like your steak cooked (well-done all the way for this author, come at him in the comments), whether you prefer cats or dogs is a weirdly polarizing topic. While we’re sure there a number of educated guesses you could make about a person based solely on the fact they own a cat, such as their living situation or how often they use that Snapchat filter that makes you look like a dog, you wouldn’t think cat ownership would be an indicator of political affiliation. Weirdly, though, there’s data to support the fact that it kind of is.

As discussed in a 2014 Time magazine article, a number of seemingly unrelated things are actually a fairly useful and accurate indicators of a person’s place on the political spectrum. While some of these things are a little more obvious than others – for example, highly conservative people are less likely to agree that watching pornography while in a relationship is acceptable and liberals are more likely to disagree with the statement “I am proud of my country’s history” – some are a little more… odd.

For example, for reasons that aren’t quite clear, people who agree with the statement that they prefer cats to dogs, by and large, appear to be more liberal than those who disagree, whereas people who use Internet Explorer are more likely to hold conservative views. Though we could chalk this up to being an interesting quirk of statistics, we feel it would be unwise to fully rule out that the possibility that cats want us to live a socialist utopia, free of Internet Explorer. That’s a future we’d actually be kind of curious about, which we’re assuming would be punishable by death in a cat-ruled society.

8. Facebook Has Better Face Detection Software Than the FBI

Due to the secretive and presumably super boring nature of most of their work, the inner workings of the FBI aren’t made privy to the public and, as such, we have no idea what awesome gadgets and technology they have access to that we don’t know about. One thing we can be sure of, though, is that they’re worse at analyzing faces than Facebook.

According to statistics released by both the FBI and Facebook, Facebook’s proprietary facial analysis software is able to accurately identify a person in a photo 98% of the time. A figure that dunks just all over the Feds, who admit that their own software has an accuracy rating of just 85%. Their main reason for this discrepancy is that the FBI very often only have a single photo to go on to identify a person. Facebook, meanwhile, often has hundreds of every person using the site, from multiple angles, allowing them to build a comprehensive image on an individual’s features. In other words, Facebook probably has a better idea of what you look like than the people who see you every day.

7. Stores Like Target Can Predict When You’re Pregnant

You probably remember a few years ago, a story breaking about the store Target correctly predicting that a young girl was pregnant. It got her in trouble when the store sent vouchers for baby stuff to her house, which were noticed by her father, who didn’t know she had a bun in the oven. What you probably didn’t hear about, or see discussed, though, is how Target was able to  do this. Now you’re probably thinking that the girl bought a pregnancy test in a Target, or something a few months earlier, or something. Which is a good assumption, but it’s not how it went down. The store was actually able to make the prediction based purely on the fact the girl had bought cotton balls and some unscented lotion a few weeks earlier. On their own these items don’t seem all that unusual, but the girl’s loyalty card also showed that she’d recently also purchased mineral substances for the first time.

Again, these don’t seem like solid indicators of pregnancy, but Target’s vast reams of data showed that in cases where women bought these items unexpectedly, several months later they’d buy diapers and other baby-related items, too, suggesting that the former items were bought during pregnancy. This allowed the store to accurately predict that the girl was pregnant. Of course they don’t get it right every time, but the fact they’re even able to get it right once is evidence enough that humans are depressingly predictable when it comes to shopping. Speaking of which…

6. Credit Card Companies Know if You’ll Skip Out on a Debt Based on if You Like Birds

Credit cards are like handguns, in that you probably shouldn’t let a person with poor impulse control hold one lest they wave it around in a store and walk out wearing a floor-length chinchilla coat. As evil as they all are, credit card companies, like any of us, just want to get paid. To this end, they hire people to pore through the reams of data they collect to better allow them to predict whether a person is good for the money they borrow.

 One of the more unusual predictors of whether a person will pay back a given debt is, rather oddly, buying fancy bird seed. As stupid as it sounds, analysis shows people willing to drop 20 bucks on premium, bald eagle-friendly bird seed seldom ever default on a payment. As innocuous as such a purchase seems, it’s one of those things that is indicative of a person’s overall personality. Think of it like littering, or being rude to waiters: it’s a small, almost trivial thing, but the kind of person who does it likely acts like an entitled douche in other areas of their life. As summed up by author Charles Duhigg:

“If you buy premium wild bird seed, you’re spending a lot of money on something that you’re going to give away to birds you don’t own. They [Credit card companies] basically figured out that the types of people who do that, pay off their credit card on time, because they feel this sense of moral obligation.”

Because of this, bird seed and other such purchases are often taken into consideration by credit card companies when it comes to deciding how much credit to give a person.

5. Buying Underwear can Indicate the State of the Economy

The economy is a weird, nebulous entity that few people are capable of fully understanding. That’s why we’re going to give you all a crash course in something known as the ‘underwear index’. Basically, there’s an observable and studied correlation between sales of men’s underwear and the current state of the economy. In a nutshell, during times of economic hardship, men buy fewer pairs. Which seems… well, obvious. We all make sacrifices when times are tough, but underwear is unique in that while it’s an essential purchase, it is one that can be put off.

Economists liken it to “driving your car for another 10,000 miles instead of having it serviced.” It’s a minor choice that says a lot about the person making it. Unlike other items of men’s clothing that are purchased sporadically, underwear is a predictable purchase, so when sales of it drop, it is a fairly reasonable indicator of the current state of the economy. If 10 million dudes aren’t willing to drop 10 bucks on a new dong pouch, there’s a good chance that the economy they work in isn’t all that strong.

4. Whether or Not You Kiss Your Partner Before Work Can Influence if You’ll Die in a Car Crash

Few things are more intimate than kissing, and we’re just going to go right ahead and say that if there’s a person out there who lets you kiss their face, all available research says that you should be doing as much as possible. Research has shown that men who kiss their wives before work every morning live longer, earn more money, and are 50% less likely to be killed in a car crash.

You may scoff at this, but numbers never lie and they all point to kissing your partner or spouse being awesome. Now, we don’t live in the Harry Potter universe, so the act of expressing your love doesn’t cast a magical bubble around you or anything. It’s more an act that’s indicative of how you live the rest of your life. Like a lot of other things on this list, kissing is a minor thing that says a lot about your overall personality, with people who do it the most being more likely to be hold a positive outlook on life (sad people are notoriously bad kissers).

Psychologists believe that kissing your partner each morning is a strong indicator that you’re, overall, a positive person, which in turn suggests you live a healthier lifestyle, which in turn suggests you’ll live longer, earn more, and be less likely to drive into a ditch. Again, it’s not that kissing magically fixes all your problems, but if you have someone in your life you care about romantically, it’s probably not a bad idea to do it more. The worst that can happen is you get to grab a handful of butt, which is always great.

3. Owning an iPhone Makes You a Terrible Person (According to Android Users)

The internet has a collective throb on for anything that involves making fun of iPhone owners, which is why studies like the ones we’re about the quote often go viral when they’re released. For example, in late 2016 a study was conducted that found that iPhone owners, in general, seem to display lower levels of “honesty and integrity”, a finding that was gleefully touted across the web by avid Android users.

While the study did indeed find a seemingly concrete correlation between personality and the brand of phone a person had in their pocket, to the point the lead researcher said they could predict what type of phone a person used based on a simple, unrelated questionnaire with about 70% accuracy, it’s not the whole story. One thing that was mysteriously left out of all the articles slamming iPhone users is that the study also showed that iPhone owners were more likely to be female, have a degree, and earn significantly more than their Android using peers. Which goes hand-in-hand with data showing rich people tend to be douchebags anyway, due to a sense of perceived entitlement.

2. Using Twitter Means You Have Shorter Relationships

Most everyone these days uses social media. The internet has resulted in a noticeable increase in the amount of people being joined at the hip, with anywhere between 5 and 10% of long term relationships today beginning online, depending on your source. With the advent and subsequent removal of the stigma surrounding online dating, the sites that offer the service have an unbelievable amount of information related to the world of getting our freak on with the opposite sex. One of the more unusual things people parsing through the endless reams of data sites like OKCupid have is that there’s a link between relationship length and the use of Twitter.

Though nobody at OKCupid is exactly sure why this is the case, the site’s co-founder has explained that the data shows a “measurable and consistent” difference between the overall length of Twitter users’ relationships compared to those who don’t tweet that much, or at all. The key thing here is that this only seems to apply to people who use Twitter all the time. You know, like those people who always Tweet pictures of their food and stuff. Numerous theories have arisen about why exactly this seems to be the case, ranging from shorter attention spans of Twitter users to an increasingly narcissistic society. Or, you know, it could just be that people who use Twitter all the time are kind of boring to be around? Anyway, erm, why not follow us on Twitter?

1. Simply Liking the Taste of Beer Means You’re More Likely to Put Out on a First Date

Sex on the first date is a weirdly antiquated taboo that, nonetheless, has a huge social stigma surrounding it. But lets say that, like 99% of people in the world you, our viral young (or young at heart) reader, like sex and want to be matched with someone who similarly likes doing the horizontal hug. All you have to do is ask if they like the taste of beer.

Again gleaned from data released by OKCupid, the site found that among users of all ages, genders, and sexualities, the single biggest signifier of whether they would consider having sex on a first date is if they responded positively to the question “Do you like the taste of beer?” There’s no data about why exactly this is the case, but we’re guessing that it has something to do with those people spending their first date getting hammered. Oh, uh, totally unrelated… happy St. Patrick’s Day, everyone! Wink, wink.

 Interestingly, while the beer question was the only accurate signifier OKCupid could find that indicated a woman would enjoy some intercourse a few hours after meeting someone, for men there were a few more… interesting results. For example, the site also found that men who’d find the prospect of nuclear annihilation exciting, can imagine themselves taking a life, and would feel comfortable launching a nuke were also more likely to have sex on a first date. Then again, if you’re comfortable ending the world in a nuclear holocaust, we’re guessing the taboo about touching genitals moments after meeting isn’t something you’d be all that concerned about.

Getting to Know You

– Without Permission

Foolish Puns #34

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Foolish Puns

If I think I’ve seen an idiot before, is that a case of deja fool.

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I believe I will be able to run my car on politicians promises but I’m having trouble with the fool injection system.

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When the King asked the fool for a joke the fool just shrugged. He was the court gesture.

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Of course you know about the self-taught comedian who made a fool of himself.

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Some foolish people gain by experience many perils of wisdom.

 

Foolish potters make wisecracks.

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My elderly aunt loves telling jokes while she knits. She is a real knitwit.

If towels could tell jokes they would probably have a dry sense of humor.

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I’m a sap for tree jokes.

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If jokes could be owned like land, then no good pun would go undeeded.

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Byte-ing humor can be found reading jokes online.

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Foolish Puns #34

Pun Central

Top 10 Best Sellers – WIF Bookshelf

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Best Selling Novels

of All-Time

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Since these are the bestselling novels of all time, you will not find any non-fiction, religious, or political books, like The Holy Quran, The King James Bible, and Quotations from Chairman Mao Tse-Tung. If we were to include them, they would be the top three in the order that they are listed.

 We chose to exclude those books because people had a spiritual or political reason to buy them. Would these books have become mega bestsellers without religious or political pressure? Who knows, but it is a major influential factor, so they have been left off the list.

nstead, these are all fictional stories that were written by a single person who sprung the idea from their head.

10. The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown: 80+ Million

On this list, you will find some of the greatest books that showcase some of the most esteemed authors to ever live. And then there’s The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown. This book that has its own Wikipedia page dedicated solely to people’s criticism of it, ranging from its historical and religious inaccuracies to its poor literary quality. Despite this, some people must have liked it because 80 million copies have been sold since it was published in 2003, and the series it’s a part of has inspired not one, but three disappointing movies from Tom Hanks and Ron Howard.

The book starts off with a murder in the Louvre in Paris, and Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon is called to the scene because the victim, the curator of the museum, wrote a coded message in blood. Soon, Langdon and cryptologist Sophie Neveu Abraham are following clues to uncover a secret that has been protected for over 2,000 years. Since there are 80 million copies out there, then there is probably a good chance you know that the secret is Jesus Christ had children with Mary Magdalene. If you didn’t, well, at least now you don’t have to read The Da Vinci Code and you can pick a better book to spend your time reading.

9. The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis: 85+ Million

Irish-born Clive Staples Lewis went to Oxford University and specialized in literature and philosophy. After school, he was given a teaching position with Magdalen College, which is a part of Oxford. While there, he joined the literary discussion group, the Inklings, which included another author on this list, who wrote the book in our #6 spot.

Lewis was a prolific writer, but he is best known today for his seven-book series The Chronicles of Narnia. The most famous book and introduction to the series, and the bestselling book of the series, is The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe, which was published in 1950.

The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe takes place in 1940 and tells the tale of four English siblings who are sent to the English countryside because of the Blitz. While there, they discover a magical wardrobe that is a gateway to another world, Narnia, which is full of talking animals and magical creatures. When the children arrive, the world is in perpetual winter because the White Witch has cast a spell to keep Narnia frozen. To help their friends in Narnia, the children must work together to defeat the White Witch and break her spell.

At first, the critics didn’t love The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe, but readers did. It’s estimated that over 100 million copies of it have been sold. The other books in the series were also bestsellers, but none of them reached the levels of the first book.

8. Dream of the Red Chamber by Cao Xueqin: 100+ Million

One of China’s greatest novels is Dream of the Red Chamber, or The Story of the Stone, which was written by Cao Xueqin, a writer and painter who was homeless and drank too much. He wrote the book in chapters during the 1750s and he exchanged the chapters with friends and family, often for food or some wine. He died in his 40s in 1763.

A collection of the chapters formed into a novel wasn’t published until 1791. However, even today, it is debated what the true version of the story is. There have been alternate endings that have survived and even completely different manuscripts have popped up. Today, there is an academic field solely dedicated to studying the variations of Dream of the Red Chamber called “Redology.”

Often compared to Gone With the Wind, Dream of the Red Chamber is a sprawling saga about the decline of a wealthy family and it is full of astute observations about life in 18th century China. It’s a massive book, the English edition is over 2,500 pages long, and there are over 400 characters and several different story lines. One of the most famous storylines involves a man named Jia Baoyu, who is in love with one of his cousins, but he is forced to marry a different cousin and this leads to a terrible tragedy.

The book was a massive hit in China, especially after a TV version was released in 1987, and it is believed that over 100 million copies of the book have been sold.

7. And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie: 100+ Million

Arguably the most famous crime writer of all time is Agatha Christie, who is also considered the bestselling author to ever live. In total, she wrote 66 novels and 14 short story collections and she supposedly sold 200 billion of them; which is 28 books for every single person on Earth. Her bestselling novel of all time is And Then There Were None, which has a plot line that is so famous that you’ve probably seen dozens of variations of it in movies and television shows.

In the book (which had a really, really unfortunate original title), 10 strangers are lured to an island under false pretenses. The only thing that all of them have in common is that they were all somehow involved in the death of another person, but managed to avoid punishment. Then at dinner, they are accused of their crimes and told that throughout the night, they would be killed one-by-one. Sure enough, the characters start to die in a manner that resembles the lines in the nursery rhyme “Ten Little Indians,” which is where the novel gets its name, because the last line of the rhyme is “And then there were none.” The killer and how they performed the murders is then revealed in a post script.

The book, which is considered to be Christie’s masterpiece, has sold over 100 million copies to date.

6. The Hobbit by J.R. Tolkien: 100+ Million

While he was a professor of linguistics at Oxford University, John Ronald Reuel Tolkien was grading some papers when he suddenly wrote a line about a creature called “a hobbit.” From that line grew the book The Hobbit, which was published in 1937. At first,The Hobbit was considered a children’s book. However, that view continued to evolve with the publication of the Lord of the Rings trilogy in 1954 and 1955 and this expanded its audience.

The Hobbit has never been out of print and got a resurgence when the Peter JacksonTolkien movies were released. In total, it’s estimated that over 100 million copies of The Hobbit have been sold.

Of course, The Lord of the Rings trilogy is also a mega-bestseller. According to Forbes, over 150 million copies of the trilogy, which includes single books and all three in a single collection, have been sold.

5. Harry Potter and Philosopher’s Stone by J.K. Rowling: 107+ Million

The story of Joanne Rowling, better known as J.K., is almost as Cinderella-esque as the protagonist of her blockbuster franchise, Harry Potter. Rowling was a single mother living on welfare in Edinburgh, Scotland, and she typed the original manuscript on a typewriter; meaning that if she changed one paragraph, she had to change anything that followed it. When she finished the manuscript in 1995, she looked around for a publisher, but was rejected by a dozen of them. One of the big problems with The Philosopher’s Stone (which is called The Sorcerer’s Stone in the United States) is that it was twice as long as the average children’s novel.

The winds of fate changed for Rowling when the chairman of a small publishing house called Bloomsbury let his 8-year-old niece, Alice, read the first chapter of the book. After she did, she demanded that he give her the rest of the book. Bloomsbury agreed to publish the book and gave Rowling a $2,400 advance. They also told her to get a day job because people didn’t make a living from writing children’s books.

Today, Rowling is worth about $910 million (she was a billionaire, but dropped off of Forbes billionaire list in 2012, because of charitable donations and Britain’s high tax rates), and it all stemmed from that book that couldn’t find a publisher and no one thought would be successful. That first book in the series has sold over 107 million copies as of 2010.

The rest of the books in the Harry Potter series were also smash hits and it is considered the biggest book franchise of all time. As of 2013, before the release of The Cursed Child and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, there were 450 million Harry Potter books in print.

4. The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry: 140+ Million

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry was a French aristocrat, writer, and pilot. After the Fall of France, Saint-Exupéry went into exile and ended up in New York City, where he continued to write. In the second half of 1942, he wrote and illustrated his magnum opus, The Little Prince. The novella was published in 1943 in North America, even though it was originally written in French because Saint-Exupéry spoke English poorly. It wouldn’t be published in France until 1946, an event that Saint-Exupéry wouldn’t live to see. In 1943, he joined the Free French Air Force and in 1944, he disappeared while doing a reconnaissance mission over Germany. His ID bracelet was found 50 years later in a fisherman’s net off the coast of Marseilles, but his body has never been found.

The Little Prince looks like a children’s book, but it actually has a lot of keen observations and insights regarding human nature and relationships. The book is about a pilot who crashes in the Sahara desert and meets a young boy with curly blond hair. The boy tells the pilot that he’s a prince that fell from a small planet called Asteroid 325, however on Earth we call it Asteroid B-612. The Prince left his home after he fell in love with a rose and he caught her in a lie, so he is traveling across the universe to cure his loneliness.

While the story and the pictures are a bit simplistic, the complexity of the emotional impact has resonated with readers for decades. It has been translated into 250 languages and two million copies are sold every year. Altogether, it’s estimated that 140 million copies of The Little Prince has been sold since 1943.

3. The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho: 150+ Million

Famed Brazilian writer Paulo Coelho’s beloved novel The Alchemist was published in 1988, and it is about Santiago, a young Spanish boy who has a dream that urges him to go to Egypt. Before he sets out, he learns about the Personal Legend, which is something that someone always wanted to do with their life. If someone decides to follow their own Personal Legend, then the universe will try to help them. And the universe is a very powerful ally. If the universe will bend to help a person on their Personal Legend, then it’s possible to do the impossible, like alchemy, which is the process of turning lead into gold.

The book and its message of following one’s dreams has made it a favorite of many famous people. Pharrell Williams gets choked up when he talks about the book, whileWill Smith thinks of himself as a metaphorical alchemist. If you know anything about Oprah, you shouldn’t be surprised that Oprah loves it. She suggested it to Madonna, who said that it was life changing.

Of course, non-famous people also love The Alchemist as well, quite a few of them in fact. In under 30-years, 150 million copies of The Alchemist have been sold.

2. A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens: 200+ Million

Charles Dickens was born into a poor family in England in 1812. When he was just 12-years-old, his dad was put into prison over debt and Dickens had to drop out and work in a run-down factory labeling cans. He was able to go back to school when he was 15, but only for a short time before he was forced to drop out again to work as an office boy to help out his family. A year later, Dickens started working as a freelance reporter. He also became a notable cartoonist who published under the name Boz. His work as a writer and cartoonist eventually led to his first novel, The Pickwick Papers, which was published in 1837.

22-years later, Dickens’ published the book that would go on to be his bestselling and arguably his greatest piece of work, A Tale a Two Cities. The book takes place before and during the French Revolution and is set both in England and France. It follows over a dozen characters, both peasants and aristocrats. It’s a rich and complex book that has been a bestseller since it was published in weekly installments from April 30 to November 29, 1859.

While it is impossible to figure out the exact number of copies that have been sold in the 150 years since it was released, most estimates put the sales figure at around 200 million copies.

1. Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra: 500+ million

Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra’s Don Quixote does have a huge advantage over the other books on this list; mainly it’s centuries older than all of them.

Don Quixote is considered the first modern novel and was published in 1605. It follows the adventures of Alonso Quixano, an elderly man who lives in La Mancha, Spain. As he loses his sanity, he reads books about chivalry and decides to become a knight. He declares himself Don Quixote de La Mancha and sets out on his old horse, Rocinante, with his loyal assistant at his side, Sancho Panza, to right wrongs and dish out justice. However, nothing goes right from the start and he gets into a bunch of hilarious adventures.

The book was an instant hit when it was released and it was reprinted six times in its first year, but Cervantes didn’t profit much from it and died poor in 1616. After his death, the popularity of the novel continued to flourish and the book is still popular today. In 2005, which was the 400th anniversary of the original publication, 10 publishing houses released a version of the book. One version from the Royal Spanish Academy sold out their entire stock of 600,000 copies in two months in Spain and Latin America.

To get an estimate of how many copies of Don Quixote have been sold since 1605, the website Lovereading.co.uk, calculated how many editions and how many translations classic novels have gone through. By their estimates, Don Quixote has been translated into 25 languages and there have been 963 editions, which calculates to over 500 million copies.


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