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33 Reviews
5 star:
 (24)
4 star:
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3 star:
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2 star:
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Worth it
I found this book just by chance and really believe that it's a treasure.

I got it for a student of mine who hates math. He's 12 years old, just like Robert in the story, really active, more interested in any computer game than anything having to have to do with school, generally doesn't understand a lot of mathematical concepts nor the need to study math...
Published on 22 Oct 2009 by Caspian Can Read

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars So-so
Interesting at first but ultimately a little disappointing. The interaction between the child and the number devil gets stale and repetitive and the mathematics while beautiful is handled in an ordinary way despite the superficial bells and whistles.
Published on 22 May 1999


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4.0 out of 5 stars The Number Devil, 13 Oct 2009
By 
Mr. T. Saber "TS" (Amsterdam, Netherlands) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Number Devil: A Mathematical Adventure (Paperback)
Brilliant book for those who have problems getting their heads around maths 9 - 13 year olds.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Number Devil, 7 Sep 2009
By 
Mrs. S. F. Faulkner (Oakville, Canada) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Number Devil: A Mathematical Adventure (Paperback)
This is a great book for getting into some tricky maths problems. Pictures excellent and explainations clear, story very well done. I am reading it with my 11 year old (who hates maths!)and we are having a lot of fun. Would recommend for adults and children.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Rekindled my interest in maths, 15 Aug 2008
I was just browsing in my local library when I saw this book, and decided to read it. I was top of my schools at maths, studied it at A-level and did Physics at uni, but hadn't really used any advanced maths since. After reading this book my interest in maths has been rekindled - I even wish I'd read this book when I'd been studying!

It's clear, interesting, easy to follow, and the ideas are presented in a way that anyone with basic mathematical skills could follow. The chapter on permutations and combinations was the best explanation I've read anywhere, and made me realise that the dry textbooks I used to use were missing a trick. (i.e. boring and difficult due to the academic presentation)

I recommend this very highly.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb!, 10 July 2001
By A Customer
This is an excellent book full of ideas and interesting ways to think about maths that children, teachers and parents will all enjoy and learn from. I did! In fact it rewakened an old interest in number theories, and pure maths. Superb!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Amazing book full of matematical tricks!, 24 Sep 2000
By A Customer
At a glance this book might look like a book of maths puzzles thats wandered over to the childrens story section.But looking again you notice the words 'A Mathematical Adventure'. An adventure story, that involves maths?
This book is about a boy called Robert who absolutly HATES maths! He is taught by a fat teacher called Mr. Blockel who's questions always seems to involve Pretzels. But then in his dreams Robert meets the Dumber Devil. The Number Devil shows Robert all the tricks of maths including 'Rutabaga','Prima-Dona'and the number '0' with the help of purple chewing gum, a walking stick that can write on anything, including the sky, and a calculator the size of a couch Robert learns the fun side of Maths.
I would recommend this book to anyone, even people who don't like maths because it is just 'so' interesting. The author, Hans Enzensberger has written a brilliant book!
By Ross Cubbon.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, 4 May 2001
I read the book and gave it to a few kids in a school, where I am helping out at the moment. It is just ideal for kids !
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars OK - good for children who need math inspiration, 9 April 1999
By A Customer
I read this to my 4th grade daughter, and hoped my 5th grade would like it also. He was bored, but she enjoyed it, and has written her own review. For her enjoyment, and her improved attitude about mathematics, I am thankful for this book. It helped me remember some fun facts about math that make it real for children.
However, I struggled reading it, becuase of its repetitiveness in dialog between robert and the devil, and because of its sameness of tone throughout. for this, I was hopelessly bored also. Read this to your children for what it is, and don't expect very creative situations. there are few.
it is appealing by description, but for adult reading it is a snoozer. Perhaps it is better read by children themselves (mine are good readers, but love being read to).
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great read, 14 May 1999
By A Customer
The Number Devil is one of the best books I have ever read. I am only 11 years old and even though it explored mathematical theories, I thought it was an amazing novel which was unputdownable. Robert is the main character in the story, and each night he dreams of the number devil. The number devil teaches Robert different mathematical aspects in a way which is simple to understand. Most of my maths class at school has read it and they also agree that it's a great book. I highly reccomend this for anyone from 10 plus.
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9 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good for discussion, 12 May 2003
By 
I've been reading this, one chapter a night, to my younger 2 (9 and 8 years old) and we've really enjoyed it. It has had the unexpected bonus of leading to further discussion, revealing gaps in their knowledge, and giving me the chance to fill the gaps (and as any maths teacher knows, those small gaps, unplugged, develop into horrible chasms through which fall all hope of enjoying maths in later life).
Not sure what I feel about not using the correct terminology. Although prima-donnas created a wonderful picture, what's wrong with the word prime? Enzensberger tells us one doesn't dream in real words, but does use mathematical terminology most of the time. Also, having said 1 isn't a prima-donnas, the devil then says any prima-donna larger than five is the sum of three prima-donnas. But you can't make 7 out of three pd's unless you do allow 1. So I am left with the quandary, is 1 a prime or not?
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Number Patterns, 2 Sep 2009
This review is from: The Number Devil: A Mathematical Adventure (Paperback)
In a quick light format different areas of number theory & patterns are illustrated in a child (and parent reader) friendly way. It is a good stop, wonder & think read.
The lightly suggested hands-on suggestions are excellent and really do help understanding.
When you have finished you will be amazed at the number of different maths topics that have been lightly covered without boredom setting in.
For me it only merits 4 stars as too many areas are noted and generate children/parent questions without providing enough of a surface level answer to satisfy.
For those wanting to raise an interest in maths & either have the knowledge or time to explore from the multiple starting points it is a 5 star book.
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The Number Devil: A Mathematical Adventure
The Number Devil: A Mathematical Adventure by Hans Magnus Enzensberger (Paperback - 1 Sep 2008)
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