How They Croaked

How They Croaked

By Georgia Bragg; Kevin O'Malley; Bragg

Walker & Company, Hardcover, 9780802798176, 192pp.

Publication Date: March 15, 2011


Over the course of history men and women have lived and died. In fact, getting sick and dying can be a big, ugly mess-especially before the modern medical care that we all enjoy today. "How They Croaked" relays all the gory details of how nineteen world figures gave up the ghost. For example:
It is believed that Henry VIII's remains exploded within his coffin while lying in state. Doctors "treated" George Washington by draining almost 80 ounces of blood before he finally kicked the bucket. Right before Beethoven wrote his last notes, doctors drilled a hole in his stomach without any pain medication.
Readers will be interested well past the final curtain, and feel lucky to live in a world with painkillers, X-rays, soap, and 911.

About the Author
Georgia Bragg is the author of Matisse on the Loose, a middle-grade novel. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, two children, and two cats.

KEVIN O'MALLEY is the co-author and illustrator of the popular Miss Malarkey series as well as the award-winning Once Upon a Cool Motorcycle Dude and the national bestseller Gimme Cracked Corn and I Will Share. He lives in Maryland.

Praise For How They Croaked

"O’Malley’s cartoon portraits and spot art add just the right notes of humor to keep the contents from becoming too gross. This all-too-informative study deserves the wild popularity it will without doubt acquire." – Booklist, starred review
"The most reluctant of readers will find it difficult to resist this consistently disgusting chronicle of the gruesome deaths of 19 will famous people. Bragg's informal, conversational style and O'Malley's cartoon illustrations complement the flippant approach to the subject; the energetically icky design includes little skulls and crossbones to contain page numbers. Engaging, informative and downright disgusting." - Kirkus "Bragg holds forth on nineteen Big Names whose demises have raised eyebrows, questions, and probably a few lunches... Carried away on a swift-flowing stream of body fluids, medical ineptitude, and O’Malley’s deliciously snarky artwork, kids will agree they got exactly what they came for." – BCCB

Saturday, Mar 12, 2011

In her illustrated book for middle-grade readers, How They Croaked, Georgia Bragg chronicles the disgusting and bloody deaths of 19 famous figures, from Beethoven (who exploded with pus) to George Washington, who bled to death. More at

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