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The Second World War Began in New Zealand

and 200 Other Dubious Facts

by Robert Anwood, with contributions by Richard Wolfe

The Second World War being started in New Zealand

“Composed of amusing little info-bites and anecdotes… It’s a good piece of fun.”

Philip Gibbs, the Nelson Mail

The Second World War Began in New Zealand is a unique New Zealand edition of Bears Can’t Run Downhill, containing all-new contributions about New Zealand from Richard Wolfe. Did I mention New Zealand?

It’s a fun collection of wildly inaccurate claims, half-baked theories and fascinating tidbits which may or may not contain a kernel of truth. The ideal book for the bloke down the pub, the quiz fanatic or the trivia buff, it’s about “facts” both true and apocryphal, with reliable information presented on their origins and accuracy. Grouped into categories such as Nature, Sports and Geography, the material covers life’s most important questions, including:

  • Do butterflies taste with their feet?
  • Is rice a fruit?
  • Is it true that you can’t fold a piece of paper in half more than seven times?
  • Did Coca-Cola once contain cocaine?
  • Are there more guns than voters in Texas?
  • Did Marilyn Monroe have six toes on each foot?
  • Were the first shots of the Second World War really fired in Wellington?

Richard Wolfe is the author of Auckland: A Pictorial History, Kiwiana and Hell-hole of the Pacific, among other novels, children’s books and works of social history.

  • Publication date: Friday 6 October 2006
  • Published by: Random House New Zealand
  • Format: Paperback, with excellent illustrations by Sarah Nayler throughout (and a cover illustration by Nick Fedaeff, from which the images on this page are taken)
  • EAN/ISBN-13: 9781869418519 (old ISBN format: 1869418514)

A boat helping the Second World War to begin in New Zealand

Here’s a December 2006 review of The Second World War Began in New Zealand from The Press. Not the greatest review, though not the worst, either!

Copyright © Robert Anwood 2021