Herman Boel - the factoid guru - is a well-known writer of books containing insignificant but interesting facts.
He has published no less than three thousand factoids in five books at Lannoo.
This interest for factoids has been continued in a Dutch language blog where you can learn about interesting language factoids.
All books below are in Dutch.
New in 2020
Block-calendar - 365 Facts That Serve No Purpose
This block-calender will be published on 25 August 2020 by Lannoo. You can buy it online.
Did you know that...
...Icelandic children are visited by thirteen Santa Clauses?
...we celebrate both PI day and Einstein's birthday on March 14?
...canaries sing more complex songs in spring than in fall?
Herman Boel tells you a surprising factoid every day, linked to that day's current event!
999 Facts that 'mostly' serve no purpose
The ultimate factoid book!
This book was published in Flanders and The Netherlands on 8 October 2019 by Lannoo. You can buy it online. It is also available as an ebook.
Did you know...
...Dutch has no words that rhyme with "twaalf" (twelve) or "herfst" (autumn)?
...armadillos only give birth to quadruplets?
...warm chocolate milk tastes better in an orange cup?
Herman Boel has selected some one thousand surprising factoids on a wide variety of subjects: mooing cows, the scent of rain, novels without verbs ... Never be without a nice factoid again!
666 myths everyone believes
This book was published in Flanders and The Netherlands on 30 April 2013 by Lannoo. You can buy it online. It is also available as an ebook.
ISBN: 9789401406918 – 11th print - 16,000 copies sold
Funny gift book with great factoids for all ages!
Mice are not fond of cheese, sex before the match is always possible, Eskimos do not have a thousand words for 'snow', and the earth is not round. Some myths are so persistent that one might almost believe that they were true. 666 myths everyone believes puts an end to this for once and for all!
555 facts that serve no purpose
After the myths in "666 myths everyone believes" Herman decided to switch things around in a new book, published in April 2014.
ISBN: 9789401415149 – Fifth print - 10,000 copies sold
Did you know that you can throw an object further to the west than to the east?
Other facts explained in this book include why a cat's urine is fluorescent, why the shortest war ever only lasted about half an hour and why the number of dimples in a golfball is so important.
After the success of "666 myths everyone believes", Herman Boel is back with a new book filled with funny – but otherwise completely useless – factoids!
444 blunders that (almost) changed history
April 2015 saw the publication of Herman's third factoid book by Lannoo.
ISBN: 978 94 014 2405 9 -
6,000 copies sold
After "666 myths everyone believes" and "555 facts that serve no purpose" Herman Boel is back with a new book.
A medicine that became the world's most popular drink, a missed exit that caused a world war, a translation error causing Mozes to be depicted with horns for centuries…
How different would the world be if we all would blunder less? We'll never know.
It's a fact, however, that you don't need to worry too much if you make a (serious) blunder. The 444 witty blunders in this book prove you are definitely not alone!
Also published as a Daisy audio book at the Luisterpuntbibliotheek. More info.
333 tips that (might) save your life
Since the previous factoid books were such a success, a fourth book had to follow.
ISBN: 978 94 014 3273 3 -
3,000 copies sold
Did you know that some medicines are better taken with coke? That a thick, warm coat in the car can be life-threatening? And that each year more people are killed by selfies than by sharks?
Danger sometimes comes unexpectedly. Fortunately, factoid guru Herman Boel is there to help you. In his new, extremely amusing book he gives 333 pieces of advice that may lengthen your life by a few years!
Chinese version of 666 myths - 601个人们深信不疑的谎言
This is the Chinese translation of "666 myths everyone believes". It was translated by Yiyao Wang and was published in March 2015.
Publisher: China Youth Press
‘601’ and no ‘666’ because the typically Flemish and Dutch articles that are not relevant to a Chinese person were removed. Also, the number 666 does not have the same meaning (read: no meaning) for the Chinese as for Europeans.
The Skeptic's Dictionary
An overview of weird convictions, funny deceptions and dangerous delusions.
ISBN: 978-90-209-9238-0 – 512 pages
What happens when you experience déjà vu? Do the lines on your hand tell anything about your life? How do auras and chakras work? Can acupuncture, bach flowers, chiropractic, osteopathy and homeopathy heal? And what's the deal with the Bermuda Triangle, crop circles, Roswell, UFOs and other alien beings? Etc.
The Skeptic's Dictionary is filled with definitions and critical articles on supernatural, paranormal, occult and pseudoscientific subjects. An indispensable reference book for readers who want to hear a critical voice on a world that never accepts criticism.
‘This book strengthens your natural resistance… against nonsense and swindle.’ –Prof. Em. Willem Betz, former president of Skepp.
‘There is a tsunami of nonsense, but fortunately we are not alone.’
–Dr. Jan Willem Nienhuys, Foundation Skepsis
Will the world perish in 2012?
Written in collaboration with the late Patrick De Witte (pdw). With beautiful cartoons by Kim Duchateau.
ISBN: 978-90-209-9988-4 – 192 pages
A clear position against all spiritual doom-mongering.
The world will perish on 21 December 2012. At least, that's what the Mayans supposedly predicted. Sceptics Herman Boel and Patrick De Witte present arguments against this and other dubious theories.
Does your handwriting reveal something about your personality? Do the lines on your hand tell you how long you will live? How do you become a baby whisperer? And what are your chances of a miracle in Lourdes?
A severe but just and sometimes hilarious analysis of all the nonsense available at the spiritual supermarket.
The history of Flanders
The History of Flanders consists of 36 chapters and covers the Roman era until the end of the 14th century, when Flanders loses its independence.
This history of Flanders reads like a novel. But it's not fiction. All events happened exactly as told.
A must for anyone who wants to know the real history of Flanders.
The History of Flanders can be bought as a paper book or PDF file via Lulu.