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Review: 100 Things Vikings Fans Should Know and Do Before They Die

Mark Craig, the long-time Star-Tribune writer, has a new book out. I read it! How was it?

With the holiday season fast approaching, it’s never too early to start looking for things for the Minnesota Vikings fans in your life. If you’re not sure what you’d like to do for the fans on the purple you’re buying gifts for, I have a look at one such item that you might be interested in.

The book 100 Things Vikings Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die is a work by Mark Craig. If you’ve been a fan of the Vikings for any length of time, you’re probably already familiar with Mr. Craig’s work, as he’s been with the Minneapolis Star-Tribune for quite some time.

This book is a pretty interesting read, but it’s a bit of a different format than what a lot of people might be used to, at least in book form. See, there are 100 different topics in the book. . .hence the title. . .but the length, not counting acknowledgements and sources and that sort of thing, is only 245 pages. That means you’re looking at right around two and a half pages for each topic.

As someone that’s spent the better part of 11 seasons of Minnesota Vikings football writing a lot of things that would probably clock in at a similar length, that’s a big part of the reason that I really enjoyed this book. If you need a quick Vikings fix at any time for any reason, you can pick up 100 Things, flip to just about any page, and there’s a good chance that you’ll have learned something new about the Vikings in about five minutes or so.

For the younger fans, there are plenty of “chapters” about players and moments from early in team history, such as the trade of Fran Tarkenton to the New York Giants or profiles of players like Wally Hilgenberg. Of course, there are plenty of looks at recent Vikings’ history from Mr. Craig’s perspective as a beat writer, such as the 2009 NFC Championship Game or a quick profile of Adrian Peterson’s incredible 2012 season. On top of that, I can almost guarantee that you’ll find something you didn’t know. For example. . .did you know that the Vikings have “Community Tuesdays,” where they go out to hospitals or schools or other charity events in the Twin Cities area? I didn’t. . .but thanks to Chapter 67 of 100 Things, I know about it now.

I know that calling something a blog in book form might not sound like a compliment on the surface, but coming from someone with my perspective on this particular line of work, I absolutely mean it in a positive way. That’s essentially what this is, I think, as it gives you the ability to get yourself a quick purple hit whenever you feel you need one. It’s probably something you could read through fairly quickly if you did it in one sitting, but for someone like myself, it appears to be on its way to becoming a decent reference piece that could come in very handy in the future.

100 Things Vikings Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die is published by Triumph Books, and has a cover price of $14.95, or $11.99 if you prefer the Kindle version. If you’re a Vikings fan, or are hunting for a gift for someone who is, this would be an outstanding addition to their library.