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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
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on 16 April 2012
The most consise, informative and wide ranging book on the sciences you can buy. Each page contains around 3 paragraphs on either fundemental mathematics, Physic's/Chemestry/Biology and Astromony. Covering the very basics through to the most difficult to grasp ideas and theorys, all explained on a single page. Every description is illustrated with beautifully detailed whimsical images.

Above all else to tone of the book is perfect, Kids would love it as it's easy enough to understand, but adults will find the level of depth presise definitions a joy as well. I own a couple of other mini guides from the publisher and the standard of production is excellent throughout, even the inlay pagea are beautifully designed. I'm really quite passionate about this book because it really deserves to be recognised as a true benchmark in scientiffic understanding made accessible. it's the best book of it's type around, one to treasure for a long time.
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on 7 February 2012
I'm no boffin. The ideas and theories expressed in this book are not easily understood by me. From a young age I veered towards the arts. This is not to blame the quality of instruction at my school (although nobody in the history of education can hold a candle to the beautiful Miss Redhouse - she drank red wine, had long, lustrous coils of jet black hair, alluded to cool things like sex and hangovers and made listening to Chaucer a near transcendental experience). No, it had more to do with content. Science was not taught in context. I don't recall any mention of the philosophy which makes it so exciting (and contentious) nor any talk of the sense of wonder it can inspire. Perhaps I was dreaming too much of those "rockkes blake". I don't think so. It was all rather boring and this totally misses the point of science. It may be hard to comprehend, it may require serious brain stretching. It may drive you nuts as you try to get your head round quantum reality or the anthropic principle but it should never be boring. And here is a book written by people who understand this point precisely. The text is distilled and jargon-free. The illustrations, integral to each facing page of words, range from playful to exquisite. This is serious science with seductive style. Get it for anyone who loves learning. Get it for yourself. Better still, give a copy to your local secondary school.
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on 1 July 2012
I hope to get my daughter to read a few pages of this wonderfuly produced book when they are relevant to her homework.

But: They have the equation for graivty WRONG! On page 88 some clueless typesetter has placed the squared symbol at the bottom of "distance", so it looks like d2 rather than d-squared!

I hope I don't find other errors, or accept them in subjects I don't know about...
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on 23 January 2012
I've just been going through this book and I am blown away with excitement about the nature of the world, cosmos, matter again! It's so inspiring to find a book that can go into such depth on the science side of things and match it all, almost page for page, with stunning prints and illustrations.

You can get a wonderful understanding of the science just from going through the pictures!

I'm sure there are some insights that I haven't seen written in print before anywhere outside the Wooden Books Series. Particularly in the astronomy section.

From my point of view, as a teacher who wanted broad general understanding of science, this has been great.
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This compact but chunky 400 page book packs in six different titles covering an eclectic if not entirely logical combination of topics. We have Burkard Polster on mathematical proofs, Matthew Watkins packing in useful mathematical and physical formulae (sounds a laugh a minute), Matt Tweed on both the periodic table and the cosmos, Gerard Cheshire on evolution and Moff Betts on the human body.

Each of the mini-books inside consists of a series of two pages spreads, which given the relatively small size of the book and the fact that the right hand page is all illustration, means that there is relatively little space for text. This is an adult equivalent of the Basher books, but thankfully without the irritating tendency to allow the topics to address the reader in the first person.

I think it is fair to say the approach works better for some topics than others. Of the two maths sections, the first on proofs is a lot more readable than the second on formulae, which ends up classically dry and unapproachable. The highlights for me were Matt Tweed's two entries, which were both approachable and enjoyable. Of the two, I think because the topic was better suited to the format, my favourite was the periodic table. That leaves the two biology based mini-books, which were fine but a little worthy, particularly the one on evolution.

Overall, then, not a bad little book, but as always with these highly illustrated two-page spread tomes I wonder what it is for. It would be very dull to read through from cover to cover - it has to be for dipping in. As a loo book, perhaps? It would probably be best seen as a gift for someone who has a slight interest in science, but doesn't know much yet (otherwise the science sections might be a bit simplistic).

The book is nicely made, though the old-fashioned looking illustrations left me cold. I really don't understand the quotes on the back like `Mesmerising' from the Guardian (unless the original review said `The pattern on the cover is mesmerising'). It is a passable book indeed, but any tendency to be put in a trance would come from the repetitive format not the wondrous content.
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on 7 October 2012
I got this for my son and myself to learn.
After using the Quadrivium book by the same publisher, I thought it would be a good companion and ready-reconer to that book. It almost is.

It lost a star purely because it has childish pictures inside. That is just my thing I guess, but the pics are a bit flimsy compaired to the Quadrivium book. My 12yr old son thinks them childish too.

Thats all. Its as good as the other reviewers said, and I am happy to use it...but those pictures!!!
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on 7 May 2014
This is a one-stop shop for everything scientific. If you're anything like me (complete beginner) then this is the one for you. Entertainingly told and beautifully bound, it's the book I've always wanted on this subject. Highly recommended!
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on 13 April 2013
These books are great, nostalgic, readable and intrinsically interesting. Reading these gave me a bit of a glow, like the encyclopaedias I got from an auntie each Christmas
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on 9 November 2013
Basics of the sciences easily understood. Very interesting, teachers should read books like this and make the subject interesting for students.
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on 16 December 2014
Book was cheaper on here then in the shops. Excellent buy. Very pleased with it.
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