The Second Book of General Ignorance

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The Second Book of General Ignorance
QI Second Book.jpg
The original UK cover.
AuthorJohn Lloyd
John Mitchinson
IllustratorThe UK cover.
CountryUnited Kingdom
PublisherFaber and Faber
Publication date
7 October 2010
Media typeHardback
Preceded byThe QI Book of the Dead 
Followed by1,227 QI Facts To Blow Your Socks Off 

The Second Book of General Ignorance is the fifth in a series of books based on the final round in the intellectual British panel game QI, written by series-creator John Lloyd and head-researcher John Mitchinson. It is the second book to be based on the show's final round "General Ignorance", the first being The Book of General Ignorance first published in 2006. Like the original book, it is a trivia book aiming to address and correct the comprehensive and humiliating catalogue of all the misconceptions, mistakes and misunderstandings in 'common knowledge' — it is therefore known not as a 'General Knowledge' book, but as 'General Ignorance'.[1] A second, expanded edition called The Discreetly Plumper Second QI Book of General Ignorance was released on 4 October 2012.[2]

Publication history[edit]

The original Book of General Ignorance was first published in the UK on 4 October 2006.[3] The book became a hit, becoming an bestseller in Christmas 2006, selling more copies in the last quarter of the year than any other book.[4] The Book of General Ignorance became the fourth bestselling book in the history of Amazon.[5]

Following the success of the original book, a new, larger paperback edition of the book was published, entitled The Noticeably Stouter Edition in Christmas Day 2008 to celebrate the TV series moving from BBC Two to BBC One,[5] and an audiobook edition entitle The Sound of General Ignorance read by Lloyd and Mitchinson was released on 1 October 2008.[3] The Book of General Ignorance has been translated into 26 languages and has sold over 1.2 million copies. The Second Book of General Ignorance, a sequel to the original was first published on 7 October 2010. A hardback version of The Noticeably Stouter Edition was published on the same day.[3]


Like the first Book of General Ignorance, The Second Book of General Ignorance contains a list of questions, most of which previously appeared in episodes of QI. Each question explains the correct answer, and usually attempts to show why people tend to make the wrong assumptions, or believe certain urban myths. The book also features an introduction entitled "Forethought" written by the host of the TV series Stephen Fry.[6]


  1. ^ "The Second Book of General Ignorance". QI. Retrieved 7 October 2010.
  2. ^ "The Discreetly Plumper Second QI Book of General Ignorance (Book)". British Comedy Guide. Retrieved 29 October 2012.
  3. ^ a b c Wolf, Ian. "'QI' Merchandise". British Comedy Guide. Retrieved 7 October 2010.
  4. ^ Wray, Richard (3 February 2007). "Harry Potter set to work magic on Amazon". The Guardian. Retrieved 7 October 2010.
  5. ^ a b "The Book of General Ignorance (The Noticeably Stouter Edition)". QI. Retrieved 7 October 2010.
  6. ^ Fry, Stephen; Lloyd, John; Mitchinson, John (7 October 2010). The Second Book of General Ignorance. Faber and Faber. pp. xiii–xvi. ISBN 978-0-571-26965-5.

External links[edit]