The Essential Desk Reference

ISBN 10: 0195128737 / ISBN 13: 9780195128734
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Synopsis: What immunizations do you need when travelling to Burkina Faso? Which movie won the Academy Award for Best Film in 1977? What is the mailing address in the U.S. for the Danish embassy? Who is the patron saint of booksellers? The Essential Desk Reference can help you find the answers to these questions--and thousands of others--in a matter of seconds.
Everything is covered--Roman emperors, the books of the Bible, the text of The Gettysburg Address, height and weight standards, mathematical terms and symbols, human anatomy, the rules of the sea, 50 major manned flights into space, and hundreds of other topics. The book provides extensive sections covering science and medicine, arts and leisure, prizes, work, and home. Numerous illustrations are riddled throughout the volume and each section ends with sources of information, making the Desk Reference an excellent starting point for further research.
Whether applying for a patent or simply browsing a list of famous inventors, The Essential Desk Reference is a resource that should always be within arm's reach. In an easy-to-use and affordable format, it offers a wealth of information on essential topics.

From Booklist: Filled with factoids covering every conceivable subject area, The Essential Desk Reference combines the attributes of an almanac, directory, specialized dictionary, encyclopedia, and more. A table of contents facilitates browsing; the book is separated into the broad categories of "World," "United States," "The Sciences," "Arts and Leisure," "Prizes and Awards," and "Work and Home." An alphabetical index allows a user to conduct more precise searches.

The scope of the content in this single volume is overwhelming. Within the "World" category one can locate lists of the world's largest islands, highest mountains, and longest rivers. There are chronologies of dynasties and monarchies; overviews of 172 nations' geography, people, governments, and economy; a good deal of data on the United Nations; and several pages of information regarding religion (who knew that grocers had a patron saint?). The book dedicates a fairly substantial section to the U.S., and it is here that one can locate lists of lobbyist groups, presidential election results from 1789 to 2000, the texts of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, brief descriptions of landmark Supreme Court cases, and more. The "Arts and Leisure" category takes up about a quarter of the book and provides the user with unending trivia in the form of lists: major authors, artists, orchestras, musicians, ballets, actors, and museums, among others. "Work and Home" includes helpful tips on personal finance and home safety, lists of area and international dialing codes, postal rates, measurement and temperature conversions, and English-language usage and style. There is even a page on Morse code, closely followed by the Braille alphabet!

The sources used to compile the various lists and tables are provided. If the information used was taken from a Web site, the page's address is given. It is important to note that much of the data can be gleaned from other print and Internet sources and that other one-volume compendia are available--notably the New York Public Library Desk Reference (3d ed., Macmillan, 1998) and the Cambridge Factfinder (4th ed., Cambridge, 2000), not to mention the perennial favorite, World Almanac and Book of Facts. The Essential Desk Reference is appropriately priced and is recommended for libraries that need another current, one-stop resource. RBB
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Title: The Essential Desk Reference
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