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Synopsis

From Santa Claus to Buffy the Vampire Slayer, from Uncle Sam to Uncle Tom, here is a compelling, eye-opening, and endlessly entertaining compendium of fictional trendsetters and world-shakers who have helped shape our culture and our lives. The 101 Most Influential People Who Never Lived offers fascinating histories of our most beloved, hated, feared, and revered invented icons and the indelible marks they made on civilization, including:

# 28: Rosie the Riveter, the buff, blue-collar factory worker who helped jump-start the Women's Liberation movement

# 7: Siegfried, the legendary warrior-hero of Teutonic nationalism responsible for propelling Germany into two world wars

# 80: Icarus, the headstrong high-flyer who inspired the Wright brothers and humankind's dreams of defying gravity . . . while demonstrating the pressing need for flight insurance

# 58: Saint Valentine, the hapless, de-canonized loser who lost his heart and head at about the same time

# 43: Barbie, the bodacious plastic babe who became a role model for millions of little girls, setting an impossible standard for beauty and style

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