Michael Bywater

I Told You So…

Too Good to Be True: The Colossal Book of Urban Legends


W W Norton 539pp £12.99 order from our bookshop

I know a chap who knew a girl whose mother told her that one day a vicious ogre who, ever since drinking a bottle of Coke with a dead mouse in it, had been living in the sewers of New York as a crocodile and one day he slithered in through the bedroom window and ate the little girl’s head right off. Meanwhile, this escaped lunatic with a hook for a hand was lurking on the edge of town and one day this girl’s older sister was necking in the car and heard…

Anyway, you know the kind of thing. But I had no real idea how numerous, how universal and how interesting these anecdotes were. Nor did I realise how gullible I was until Too Good to be True revealed that not only did many of us believe the stories, but we also believed that they had happened to us.

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