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The WWE Encyclopedia is a reference book featuring in-depth knowledge surrounding the leading organization in professional wrestling, World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE). The book covers the 45-year history of WWE and features a comprehensive A-Z listing of nearly 1,000 former and current wrestlers from as early as the 1960s to the present day. The book also contains official listings for title histories, television and pay-per-view events, most notably, a detailed history of WrestleMania. Also included are highlights of memorable merchandise, video games and fan signs as well as former WWE superstars who have gone on to have successful film careers.
The WWE Encyclopedia contains profiles for past and present WWE personalities, as well as event and title histories. While providing information primarily about the personalities career in WWE, information is also present about their careers in other companies. People who portrayed separate characters are often given separate profiles for each character.
Even people who left the company on bad terms were given favorable profiles, including Alundra Blayze and The Ultimate Warrior. Even Chris Benoit has a profile in the encyclopedia, even though WWE has tried to distance itself from him since his double murder and suicide. The killings, however, are not mentioned.
Brian Shields and Kevin Sullivan created the book together. WWE was given final say over who would be included in the book. Overall, the book took over one year to create. Sullivan and Shields divided some of the work load, dividing the research for championship title histories in half.
Reception and criticism
The book debuted at No. 10 on the New York Times Hardcover Books Bestsellers List, and climbed as high as No. 8.
It received mostly favorable review. Bob Kapur of SLAM! Wrestling was favorable toward the book, saying that it "is just the ticket for fans looking for a trip down memory lane." He praised the book for including lesser known personalities, but also criticized the absence of notable tag teams such as Doug Furnas and Phil LaFon. Simon Rothstein of The Sun stated, "I cannot stress how much fun this book is to read."