Prisoner of Trebekistan

A Decade in Jeopardy!

Harris, Bob

Book - 2006
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Prisoner of Trebekistan
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A.: This is the story of a working-class guy from Ohio with little real knowledge of Ambidextrous Presidents, Things Made from Rubber, and hundreds of other categories, but who nonetheless plunges so far into cramming for Jeopardy! that it changes his relationships, bends his worldview, and literally leads him to the ends of the earth, trying to understand it all. Q.: What is Prisoner of Trebekistan? Welcome to a world where obscure information is crucial to survival, vast sums of cash are at stake, and milliseconds can change not just a game but the course of your entire life. (Plus, you could win two Camaros and enough Bon Ami cleanser to scrub a small nation.) Prisoner of Trebekistanis Bob Harris's hilarious, insightful account of one man's unlikely epic journey throughJeopardy!, gleefully exploring triumph and failure, the nature of memory, and how knowledge itself can transform you in unpredictable ways--all against the backdrop of the most popular quiz show in history. InPrisoner of Trebekistan, Bob chronicles his transformation from a struggling stand-up comic who repeatedly fails theJeopardy!audition test into an elite player competing against the show's most powerful brains. To get there, he embarks on a series of intense study sessions, using his sense of humor to transform conventional memory skills into a refreshingly playful approach to learning that's as amusing as it is powerful. What follows is not only a captivating series of high-stakes wins and losses onJeopardy!, but also a growing appreciation of a borderless world that Bob calls Trebekistan, where a love of learning reigns and the smarter you get the more you realize how much you don't yet know. Filled with secrets that only a veteran contestant could share--from counterintuitive game strategies to Jedi-like tactics with theJeopardy!signaling device--Prisoner of Trebekistanalso gives you the chance to play along with the actual clues that led to victory or defeat in high-level tournaments, plus candid, moving reflections on how the games affected Bob's offstage life--and vice versa. Not only an irresistible treat forJeopardy!fans,Prisoner of Trebekistanis a delight for anyone who loves a rollicking tale that celebrates the unpredictability of life and the sneaky way it has of teaching us the things that really matter.

Publisher: New York : Crown Publishers, c2006
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780307339560
0307339564
Branch Call Number: 791.4572 J54h 2006
Characteristics: xi, 339 p. ;,25 cm

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The hilarious, insightful account of one man's unlikely epic journey through Jeopardy! , exploring triumph and failure, the nature of memory, and how knowledge can transform us in unpredictable ways--all against the backdrop of the most popular quiz show in history. Harris chronicles his evolut... Read More »


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Feb 01, 2015
  • WVMLStaffPicks rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Are you a trivia buff or game show fan? These two recent yet quite different, books relate to the television show Jeopardy! Jennings gives a bit of a peek into his record-setting Jeopardy! appearances, alternating with chapters on the history of trivia. It's a nice and polite book, just like its author. Harris managed to appear on Jeopardy! for almost a decade between his original games and various tournaments. He describes his Jeopardy! study plan as a “Jedi-like path to life”, all told with a sly sense of humour reflecting his past as a stand-up comic. Both books will add a few trivial facts to your cocktail party banter, as well as teach you a bit about the game show of life.

(See also, Brainiac: Adventures in the Curious, Competitive, Compulsive World of Trivia Buffs)

Dec 21, 2009
  • puih123 rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

Great book, interesting to see what the show is like from a contestant's point of view. Great memory tricks which I am sure will help anyone in the future!

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