Tag Archives: Guinness World Records

Jew of the Week: R.L. Stine

Giving You Goosebumps Since 1986

R.L. Stine

R.L. Stine

Robert Lawrence Stine (b. 1943) began writing when he was nine years old, having discovered a typewriter in the attic of his Ohio home. His writing career took off with a series of humourous children’s books by “Jovial Bob Stine”. At the same time, he created the popular humour magazine Bananas, which ran for 72 issues between 1975 and 1984. But it was in another genre that Stine really lit up the literary world. In 1986 he began writing horror novels and soon after launched the most famous series of horror books of all time: Goosebumps. Between 1992 and 1997, R.L. Stine published an incredible 62 Goosebumps novels (with over 100 additional spin-off volumes in subsequent years), selling over 400 million copies and making him among the wealthiest authors in the world. He was named America’s number one best-selling author by USA Today. Among many other awards, Guinness gave him the world record for best-selling children’s book series of all time. Goosebumps was translated into 32 languages, and became a hit TV show that ran for four seasons. It also spawned three video games. Along with his humour and horror books, R.L. Stine has written adult fiction and science fiction. An equally famous series of books are R.L. Stine’s Fear Street, with over 100 titles published. A prolific writer, few know exactly how many books Stine has written, with estimates ranging from 300 to 500 books, or even more – perhaps another reason why Stine was on People‘s list of the world’s “Most Intriguing People”.

Words of the Week

Nothing is life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more, so that we may fear less.
– Marie Curie

Jew of the Week: David Copperfield

Most Successful Entertainer in History

David Copperfield

‘Magician of the Century’ David Copperfield

David Seth Kotkin was born in New Jersey to a Ukrainian-Jewish father and Israeli mother. At age 10 David started putting on magic shows in his neighbourhood. He was so amazing that by age 12 he was already admitted into the Society of American Magicians, the youngest person ever to do so. At 16, he taught magic at New York University. At 18, he was cast in the musical The Magic Man and there adopted his stage name ‘David Copperfield’ – taken from the Charles Dickens novel. At 21 he starred in his first TV special for ABC. Copperfield went on to make 19 more incredible TV specials, as well as several movies and Broadway performances, winning a total of 21 Emmy Awards during that time (with 38 nominations), and setting 11 Guinness World Records. He has sold over 40 million tickets to his shows, grossing more than $3 billion – making him the most successful solo entertainer of all time. This wealth allowed him to purchase a chain of islands in the Bahamas, known as the Islands of Copperfield Bay, where people can vacation with magical thrills (and where Google founder Sergey Brin got married). He has also built the International Museum and Library of the Conjuring Arts. Though not open to the public, it contains the world’s largest collection of magical texts and artifacts. Since 1982, Copperfield has been running ‘Project Magic’, a charitable organization that helps disabled people regain dexterity through practicing fun magic techniques. The program quickly became popular and now runs in over 1100 hospitals in 30 countries around the world. Copperfield has been knighted by the French government, and the Library of Congress has titled him a ‘Living Legend’. His shows continue to amaze people worldwide.

Words of the Week

The frog said to King David: “I have a mitzvah greater than any of yours, for there is a bird that lives by the swamp and hungers, and I sacrifice my life to feed it.”
– Perek Shira