Thursday, July 22, 2010

Book Review: Easy as Pi by Jamie Buchan

Title: Easy as Pi: The Countless Ways We Use Numbers Every Day
Author: Jamie Buchan
Publisher: Reader's Digest
Pub Date: 2009
ISBN: 978-1-60652-134-2
Pages: 174
Genre: Reference
Price: 14.95

I received a free copy of this book from FSB Associates for my honest review.

Synopsis from the publisher:
Have you ever stopped to think how many countless ways we use numbers? From the ring of the alarm clock in the morning to the numbers triggering our cell phones, our world is designed with numbers in mind. With Easy As Pi, you'll get the 411 on the fascinating origin of many of the numbers we use or read about every day:

*What makes cloud nine and seventh heaven so blissful?
*Why is number 7 so lucky and 13 so unlucky?
*Is fourth-dimensional thinking really out of this world?
*What prompted Ray Bradbury to call his novel Fahrenheit 451?
*How did 007 become James Bond's number?

For the math averse: Be not afraid. Easy As Pi is not a textbook but rather a lively book at the derivation of numerical expressions and their inescapable influence on our culture-from book titles to bus schedules. To sum it up, Easy As Pi equals one clever and often hilarious collection.

About the Author:
Jamie Buchan was educated at Westminster School and is completing a Master of Arts degree in Architectural Studies at the University of Edinburgh. Many of his family members are involved in books: his great-grandfather John Buchan is the prolific novelist famous for The Thirty-Nine Steps; his grandfather D.J. Enright is a well-known Movement poet; and his uncle James Buchan is an award winning novelist and historical writer. Both of his parents work in publishing.

My review:
Let me start out by saying that I am not a math person at all. However, I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The book is divided in sections to include: Numbers in Language, Numbers in Fiction, Numbers in Culture, Numbers in Mythology and Religion, and Numbers in Math and Science. Each of these sections has numerous short stories about topics included in each heading. I love trivia and fun facts and this book was stocked full of them. I recommend this to everyone, not just those that like trivia. I think all will find it intriguing and enjoy how phrases with numbers came about.

1 comment:

  1. This sounds really fun. I have a background in math (though I'm hopeless at adding up), and I love finding out more of the symbolism in numbers.