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VINE VOICEon 4 October 2008
Two trains are approaching each other on the same track, both traveling at 50 mph. When they are exactly 100 miles apart, a fly, traveling at 60 mph, leaves the front window of one train and heads directly towards the 2nd train. When it reaches the front window of the 2nd train it turns (instantaneously) and heads back towards the 1st train, always maintaining its speed of 60mph. When it reaches the front window of the 1st train it turns again and heads back to the 2nd train. It keeps flying between the trains in this manner until the trains meet and the fly is killed. The question is: what total distance does the fly travel before the trains meet?

A mother is 21 years older than her son. In 6 years time she will be 5 times the age of her son. The question is: Where is the father?

Such are the some of the delightful problems or puzzles that the author sets us and then proceeds to show us how to answer in surprisingly easy ways, using everyday maths. So don't be put off by the idea that maths is dull, boring or not something that we can all use and enjoy. After all, everyone does use maths in some form every day in lots of ways.

By the time you are finished this highly engaging book you will be able to square (in your head!) any number between 1 and 100. For instance, 37 x 37 = 1369 and so on. I have already impressed my long suffering family with that one.

He also shows us some card tricks and how to win at Penney Ante 88% of the time - definitely worth a congratulatory round of drinks down at the pub. And there are some chapters on some of the more striking properties of triangles, rectangles etc, and some thoughts on the inherent consistency and beauty of numbers. A wonderful book which can be read in one sitting, or dipped into or revisited from time to time. A treat to read for oneself and a wonderful gift for family or friends.
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on 7 October 2013
An incredibly entertaining and amusing book. Had me hooked so much so I could not put it down and read through the night. I am practising the card tricks every day now.
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on 13 February 2013
Brilliant for the layman whose school education never revealed that Maths was all about delightful pictures and connecting patterns in Nature.
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on 22 August 2013
I bought this book for my daughter to help her get more interested in maths, but started reading it myself. This little gem of a book is filled with fascinating tidbits, tricks and insights. Now, if I can only get my daughter to read it! I hope it sparks more of an interest in maths for her, or at least helps her understand that maths isn't all about dry columns of numbers or exams...
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on 14 May 2009
Broad range of topics covered. Each topic is covered in enough depth and always with clear explanations and good use of English.
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on 21 September 2013
I found the facts and figures interesting and even amusing. I didn't engage in the activities suggested in each chapter (to illustrate the maths) as this was a holiday read. Some of the maths I found difficult to follow but the book held me sufficiently that I completed reading it. Having a science or maths bent will help!
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on 31 August 2013
I like Rob Eastaway. I've seen him once at a conference and like the way that he has the ability to make difficult concepts easier. This is a book about expectations and is full of surprises. Suitable for mathematicians ans non mathematicians alike. Worth reading.
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on 2 June 2014
This book is very interesting and it makes maths sound so simple even though it's not that simple. I also think that it is very imaginative and I think that Rob Eastaway is - as well as being a marvellous author - is one of the most intelligent people I know
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on 5 September 2013
I always had problems with maths at school, down to not a very good maths teacher. But this book explains things in very simple terms, and the logic behind it all, so it does begin to make sense. Perhaps more maths teachers should read this book!
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on 15 December 2013
The book surprised me, I began reading thinking that I would be thrown into learning interesting things but with difficult maths however was nicely surprised when the book was written in a way that everyone can understand. Great maths book.
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