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3.6 out of 5 stars
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3.6 out of 5 stars
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As has possibly everyone else, I've seen these books around for years, but I've never picked one up...until now. Those that have will know that the books are certainly the opposite of rocket science, in of course the very nicest possible way, which became very visible, very quickly.

This is only a taster of the For Dummies series, which the amazon blurb covers in pretty full-on detail, and I liked how clear, non-condescending and concise everything was. In fact, on reading the first bit, Windows 7 For Dummies, with its descriptions of What Is A Mouse, Creating/Deleting/Retrieving Files etc., I may well get this For Dummies book for my 70yo mum, who's just learning to use a PC.

The English is clear, all is step-by-step and it has images and diagrams and very clear explanations. Of course, being a French-speaker, I had to check out the French For Dummies extract, which was helpful as well as amusing. And of course, I also had to check out Sex For Dummies: having been happily married now for 21 years, it was interesting to read some of the Dr Ruth suggestions e.g. Connecting Through Meaningful Conversations, Scheduling Time Together, Scheduling Sex Dates, Stopping Destructive Habits, and for me and hubby personally, Staying Close To Avoid Empty-Nest Syndrome.

I also particularly liked the bits on Cognitive Behavioural Therapy For Dummies, which I could have done with due to my Empty-Nest Syndrome, as it had gems like Accepting That Life Can Be Unfair, Thinking Flexibly, Understanding That Approval From Others Isn't Necessary, Tolerating Short-Term Discomfort, Meditation, Relaxing Your Body, Enacting Enlightened Self-Interest (i.e. it's ok to put yourself first sometimes, with 1/2/a close handful of people a very close second. A really BIG thing that us mums don't often do...until we become Empty-Nesters).

Whilst I can't imaging absolutely needing to read one of these right-here, right-now, I will certainly check out any titles that become relevant. On top, they are cheap and many titles are in stock at my local library. A great introduction to For Dummies, by the now-converted.
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on 20 December 2011
I have been a dummies fan for a long time and this is exactly "a little bit of everything". I generally buy the various computing books in paperback, but having recently got interested in Kindle (I'm hoping for one for Christmas) I thought I would download this one on my PC. It covers a plethora of subjects from computers to dating, from recipes to putting together a life plan, in short if there is a subject that dummies hasn't covered at some point I don't know what it is. If you've never read one of these reference books before then this one is a perfect introduction and the Kindle edition is free!!
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VINE VOICEon 23 December 2011
Who hasn't see a "... for Dummies" book? But who has actually picked one up and started reading? Well this is the first one I've ever read and I really quite enjoyed it.

The book is very well-structured, with key chapters from popular books, split into sections where the chapters all more or less have something in common. They did make me think, sometimes, especially the chapter from Sex for Dummies (by Doctor Ruth) and the chapter from Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Dummies, which really hit home.

However, if you do know a bit about the subject in question - for me in this book, DOS and Facebook were two - then it can seem a little, well, patronising. Just skip through, you won't miss out.

As a lead in, however, it works perfectly. I've just downloaded British History for Dummies and Canadian History for Dummies, based on the incredibly accessible and entertaining chapters in this book.
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on 14 November 2012
I'm really surprised at the poor reception of this book, if the low stars are anything to go by.

First to squash a few rumours; DOS is still alive and well! I'm no expert (well maybe I am but my husband's the guru) but I started my programming life using DOS more than thirty years ago and some of our current software is DOS-based. When all around crashes, DOS programs soldier on. In any case, being the first 'For Dummies' book, how could it not be included?

The book is self-defining; it isn't intended to teach each subject in its entirety. How could it when only one chapter from each of twenty books (of the thousands of titles) is included? The description quite clearly explains that it's a celebration of the 'For Dummies' books 20th Anniversary. The choice of subjects is not going to please all of the people... but if, like me, you learn something at every turn of the page and have latent interests revived then that's good isn't it?

I downloaded it to wander down memory lane and also to see how they handled subjects on the fringe of my interests. French, for example, is a language I always intended to 're-learn' and the chapter on this has given me the inspiration to do so. And, I have often been curious about Facebook but never had the courage - nor will I probably - to join that club but at least now I have some idea of what it's all about. Plus, the many more (substantial) tasters on a wide range of subjects I would probably not have ventured into can only broaden my repertoire of knowledge. Another good thing, yes?
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VINE VOICEon 29 January 2012
To be honest Having read many dummies books which have helped me I didn't really find this book very helpful or in many cases interesting. To celebrate 20 years of Dummies books the publishers have taken chapters out of what they consider the most interesting books in order to give a flavour of what the Dummies series provides. Bearing in mind these are random chapters eg. Chapter 3 you start reading with no flavour of what has gone before. The topics are also rather eclectic with French, sex, DOS and self de elopement. Wing the first four offerings. Out of that the only one which interested me was the Self Development. I appreciate the this is my taste and others may find all topics fascinating And want a brief insight into them. Later offerings seemed to be more interesting such as Leadership and marketing both of which could help me in my job. However, the chapters themselves are not enough so you would need to buy the whole book. The one thing about this book is that it is given away free for kindle so can perhaps give you a brief glimpse into topics about which you want to find out more. This leaves me with the feeling that this book is nothing more than a marketing ploy to get you interested in a topic and get you to buy the complete book.
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on 28 January 2012
I have seen the "Dummies" series of books many times, but never used one for anything.

Several of the topics were dated, or just plain old, and some really no use at all (to me). However I treated this free book offer as I believe it was intended..... as an intro into the range & diversity of topics available.

With that in mind I quite enjoyed the book.
The layouts of some pages was not too good, but that may be down to the migration from paper doc to digital.
However some of the topics were quite absorbing and held my interest.

In summary, I may have been missing out on something as I found this freebie a nice little intro into the world of dummies.
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on 16 August 2014
A great idea to offer for free this fun volume introducing the Dummies series. As these are rather expensive this is a good way to see what you might be getting when/if you sink over £15 of your hard-earned cash into the full thing...

The 'Dating' section (especially the do's & don't's) were hilarious, & some of the sex advice (from Dr Ruth, no less !) whilst rather obvious, is nevertheless sensible, while the sections on meditation & C.B.T are actually pretty fascinating & possibly even useful...

All in all, great value at £0.00. Don't know if I'd feel the same if it cost actual money, though !
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on 9 February 2012
Please, all those who gave less than 5 stars...why? It is FREE for heavens sake, a taster, not even worth trying to put anybody off for that price surely.

i despair at those who criticise something that is given away. At least it does what it says on the tin..it is a little bit of everything and a great dipper.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 29 December 2012
This book contains highlights of some of the most popular Dummies books going. It starts with the oldest set of book - computing. Whilst you may think knowing this stuff is no longer relevant, products like the raspberry pi - a £25 computer, show that it definately is still worth knowing.

However it soon moves onto the lifestyle books with section on stuff from avoiding sexual relationship pirfalls to training a new puppy via leadership and rock and roll guitar playing. Finally it moves on to travel, history and social media.

Nothing is comprehensive, its only seleced chapters, but its great to dip into especially on a soggy sunday afternoon when you just need to look at something other than weekend tv or facebook. Great fun to be had, and new interests to discover....
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on 8 January 2015
It's a mix of several chapters from several dummies over several years. It's neat, but not everything, or really much of everything. It's more of an out of interest book than anything useful. It's a good buy for less than £1, but definately do not pay more than that, if that.
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