Another wonderful work by Al Seckel and an appropriate companion to his other gem “Master’s of Detection”. See my review of it dated Dec 1, 2004.
This is a fine collection of 144 intriguing illusions. There are examples of a lot of different forms of illusions. I say a lot because there is one form which I like which is not included. That being “trompe-l’oeil” which is French for still-life deceptions, illusion, sham or camouflage. A well-known artist who excels at it is Bev Doolittle.
Al has included many of the classic illusions, of which 105 is an example from [Read More...]
Just when I least expected it, a new book on Jigsaw Puzzles appears. I already had a good book on the subject, “The One, the Only, The Original Jigsaw Puzzle Book” by Francene and Louis Sabin, 1977.It was and still is a very good book. While obviously, some of the same things are covered, there is still enough that i.e. different to make it worthwhile as a companion to this new jigsaw book. (See my review).In just about every aspect, this book gives a lot more. There are 16 color pages showing about 50 collectible jigsaws; no way could black [Read More...]
A great new book by one of the masters of Recreational Mathematics and Puzzles. The hinged Square & other Puzzles will give hours of fun to puzzlers of all abilities and interests. Just to get warmed up, Ivan shows us how to construct triangles, squares, pentagons, pentagrams, hexagons, heptagons, hexagrams, octagons, heptagons, octagrams and nonagons ,all with only a compass and a straight edge. Then he reminds us of something we’ve known since childhood; that no two snowflakes are alike. He shows 5 designs and tells us about Bentley (1865-1931), who was the first to photograph one in 1885,and went [Read More...]
I have been interested in puzzles of all kinds since a youth, over 60 years ago. I have hundreds of puzzles and over 600 books of puzzles and Mathematical Recreations. I just obtained The Big, Big, Big Book of Brainteasers a couple of weeks ago, and even though I haven’t done all the puzzles–yet; I have no hesitation in saying that it is one of the best I’ve ever seen. What makes a puzzle book stand out above the plethora of those that have been published is that it should have a wide variety of puzzles, and there should [Read More...]
The Great Book of Math Teaser is a good little book of puzzles. However, the title is somewhat misleading. It is hardly “Great”. It has only 96 pages and there are only 81 puzzles in the book and not all the puzzles involve math, in fact some are what you would call magic tricks, screw or cog puzzles, river crossing problems, dice puzzles, matchstick puzzles etc. In other words a good variety of puzzles. However, they are all mind teasers of one type or another; and will entertain and challenge anyone who likes puzzles. Generally speaking this collection [Read More...]
The Ultimate Book of Optical Illusions is another excellent book of Optical Illusions by a most prolific author of Optical Illusions. If you enjoy these Tromp L’Oeil’s, Impossible Figures, Hidden Pictures ,Topsy-Turvy, Imponderables, or whatever you wish to call then; you’ll find this an impressive collection of 355 of them .They are very well printed, mostly in color, except some of the very old ones or those better done in B&W. It is a fairly large book and the illusions are printed one per page. There are captions on each, but only [Read More...]
I have been a fan of puzzles of many kinds for about 65 years; and have somewhere around 700 puzzle and Mathematical Recreation books in my library; along with hundreds of hand held or mechanical puzzles. I have no idea of how many hours I’ve spent enjoying puzzles, why I like them so much, or why I like some types of puzzles more than others. The Playful Brain is the first book I’ve come across that delves deeply into the various types of puzzles and the parts of the brain that become involved in solving [Read More...]