I remember watching Jack Palance on the old syndicated show "Ripley's Believe it or Not" back in the 80's. I was fascinated by the stories and the photos of the strange collection of Robert Ripley. I always cringed at the gory photos but loved the interesting facts.
When I was a book buyer every year Scholastic would come in with a new special edition version of Ripley's Believe it or Not! We would all look at it and wonder how they could top the gross cover of the year before. The editors at Scholastic seem to go out of their way to find the goriest or most disgusting photo. Of course they know what they are doing, they have their fingers on the pulse of every child imaginable. These books are popular with kids because every story and photo is picked with them in mind. Now not every child likes all things weird or disgusting but there are enough out in the world to make books like these big sellers. So for every kid who loves the macabre or the weird this new edition is for them. I know some adults who still love these kinds of things too!