Book review: The Number Devil by Hans Magnus Enzensberger

The Number Devil: A Mathematical AdventureThe Number Devil: A Mathematical Adventure by Hans Magnus Enzensberger
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’ve been meaning to read this book for a long time, as it came highly recommended by both my kids. After reading it, I can see why. The author has written a loose structure of a novel in order to painlessly and seamlessly teach children some basic math concepts. Along the way, he makes math fun and interesting and accessible. (I actually happen to think math *is* fun and interesting and accessible, but I realize that not everyone does.)
The book is geared towards middle schoolers, but it works well for older children and adults as well. It also works well for both people who love math and its intricacies as well as people who are math-phobic, as it provides explanations and projects for experiential learners, all in a fun and light-hearted way.
I would best characterize the book as a novel about math. If that intrigues you, then read the book!

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Book review: The Scribe’s Daughter by Stephanie Churchill

The Scribe's DaughterThe Scribe’s Daughter by Stephanie Churchill
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’m a fan of the fantasy genre and picky about my books. This is a very well written book with several interesting plot twists and surprises. The characters are well drawn, and the heroine is especially entertaining with her sarcastic sense of humor and plucky spirit. The secondary characters are also interesting. The pacing is, perhaps, a bit uneven (not surprising for a debut novel), but while the book may start a bit slowly, it certainly makes up for it the rest of the way!
For fans of YA or fantasy, I definitely recommend this book for you!

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Book review: Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

Code Name Verity (Code Name Verity, #1)Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book is classified as Young Adult fiction, but it is so much more than that. The plot is fairly simple–a young woman is caught by the Gestapo in occupied France and is writing her story about how she ended up as a spy in France. But the book is so much more than a story of World War II. It is the story of the bonds of friendship and what true friendship really means. It is the story of wartime and how it affects families. It is the story of women and their role in World War II. But, mostly, it is the story of two young women from two very different classes in life, who wind up as unlikely best friends, and how their friendship evolves and withstands the test of time and war and tragedy. The universal themes of friendship and conflict will resonate with every reader. It is a fabulous book for kids (my 12 year old son read it and loved it) and adults. I highly highly recommend it!

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