Take your brain for a jog around an entertaining collection of wildly clever twisters, illustrated with zany and delightful drawings. Many play with clues that are numbers, letters, or words. Others use tricky visuals to tease the mind. ALL are favorites of a world-renowned puzzle master--and they're tougher than they look, to provide a really enjoyable challenge. Try this one, just to warm up your wits and whet your puzzle-solving appetite:
HIJKLMNO: These letters, when properly understood, stand for a common liquid. Name it.
Or--complete a crossword puzzle by filling blanks with words that mean the opposite of the clues, finish a joke by making up the punch line, and lots more!
1. H to O or H2O, the chemical symbol for water--two atoms of hydrogen combined with one atom of oxygen.
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Martin Gardner was a renowned author who published over 70 books on subjects from science and math to poetry and religion. He also had a lifelong passion for magic tricks and puzzles. Well known for his mathematical games column in Scientific American and his "Trick of the Month" in Physics Teacher magazine, Gardner attracted a loyal following with his intelligence, wit, and imagination.
Martin Gardner: A Remembrance
The worldwide mathematical community was saddened by the death of Martin Gardner on May 22, 2010. Martin was 95 years old when he died, and had written 70 or 80 books during his long lifetime as an author. Martin's first Dover books were published in 1956 and 1957: Mathematics, Magic and Mystery, one of the first popular books on the intellectual excitement of mathematics to reach a wide audience, and Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science, certainly one of the first popular books to cast a devastatingly skeptical eye on the claims of pseudoscience and the many guises in which the modern world has given rise to it. Both of these pioneering books are still in print with Dover today along with more than a dozen other titles of Martin's books. They run the gamut from his elementary Codes, Ciphers and Secret Writing, which has been enjoyed by generations of younger readers since the 1980s, to the more demanding The New Ambidextrous Universe: Symmetry and Asymmetry from Mirror Reflections to Superstrings, which Dover published in its final revised form in 2005.
To those of us who have been associated with Dover for a long time, however, Martin was more than an author, albeit a remarkably popular and successful one. As a member of the small group of long-time advisors and consultants, which included NYU's Morris Kline in mathematics, Harvard's I. Bernard Cohen in the history of science, and MIT's J. P. Den Hartog in engineering, Martin's advice and editorial suggestions in the formative 1950s helped to define the Dover publishing program and give it the point of view which — despite many changes, new directions, and the consequences of evolution — continues to be operative today.
In the Author's Own Words:
"Politicians, real-estate agents, used-car salesmen, and advertising copy-writers are expected to stretch facts in self-serving directions, but scientists who falsify their results are regarded by their peers as committing an inexcusable crime. Yet the sad fact is that the history of science swarms with cases of outright fakery and instances of scientists who unconsciously distorted their work by seeing it through lenses of passionately held beliefs."
"A surprising proportion of mathematicians are accomplished musicians. Is it because music and mathematics share patterns that are beautiful?" — Martin GardnerFrom Booklist:
Gr. 4-8. Best known for the column "Mathematical Games," which ran in Scientific American for 25 years, puzzle-master Gardner here presents 103 short challenges based on wordplay. Readers must have their wits about them, but most of the conundrums are solvable without a peek at the appended answers (and enjoyable even after peeking). Although most of the puzzles stand alone, many are illustrated with lively, cartoon-style ink drawings, and some depend on clues in the pictures for their solutions. Teachers who want to encourage verbal awareness in their students will find the book an appealing source of good-natured puzzlers that challenge children to think more playfully about language. Carolyn Phelan
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Book Description Sterling, 2002. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0806976853