"Freakonomics" by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner was such a hit that it inspired a blog, a podcast, and a sequel, which they chose to name "SuperFreakonomics."

Like the original book, "SuperFreakonomics" explores unusual questions and odd correlations and applies the logic of an economist to suggest possible answers.

Some of the topics have little to do with economics.

They discuss the infamous 1964 New York Times story that reported a woman murdered in front of thirty-eight witnesses, none of whom called the police. They show that the passive bystander report was inaccurate and suggest reasons why the police might spread this story.

The authors describe a company in Washington state and its unique approaches to tackling the problems of global warming and devastating hurricanes. One solution involves spraying sulfur particles into the upper atmosphere would deflect sunlight enough to cool the Earth, as it did after some large volcanic eruptions.

They argue that it is safer to drive drunk than to walk drunk (at least for the drunk person), as walking drunk results in fewer deaths per mile.

They interview prostitutes and explore the financial numbers and the risks of the profession. According to the book's data, a Chicago police officer is more likely to have sex with a prostitute than arrest her.

They devote a chapter to the study of altruism, trying to determine if humans are altruistic by nature. Each study presented seems to contradict the one before suggesting alternately that people act in  their own best interest and that they want to help others when they are able. Because economics is mostly about how people respond to incentives (monetary and otherwise), this chapter sought the incentive that motivated people in each study.

Mostly, the book has fun with data and stories about people attacking problems by looking at them in unique ways.

It is not a scholarly treatise, and its conclusions are not dogmatic. But it is an entertaining book that will challenge conventional wisdom and spark thinking and conversation.