and Other Curious Expressions by Charles Earle Funk
A book that tells the origins and meanings of many many sayings- over four hundred of them. It's a nice read if you are interested in etymology, and an easy book to dip in and out of. The forward describes in detail how the author sought out the original meaning of the phrase "as independent as a hog on ice"; the rest of the entries simply outline what the final findings were. Most of the expressions I had heard before, a few were entirely unfamiliar to me. Some I had an idea where they came from, others it was the opposite of what I would have assumed. Lots are from political moments in history, old arcane practices, or mispronunciations of former word forms (many of the expressions are centuries old). In some cases the author found no evidence at all, so he surmised a best guess.