Lots of exciting books have been written based around maths, they range from looking at equations that have changed our world to looking at mathematical mistakes people have made, some times disastrous and sometimes funny.

These are a few of our recommendations:

Chalkdust - an online magaizine

Chalkdust is a magazine for the mathematically curious.
A magazine is a collection of pieces of paper covered in interesting content and stapled together. Mathematics is the study of numbers, structures, patterns, and change. Something is curious if it is interesting, thought-provoking, and possibly surprising or unusual.
Chalkdust is all these things, mixed in a giant bowl, then spilt on the floor.

Click here to take a look.

Humble Pi - Matt Parker

What makes a bridge wobble when it's not meant to? Billions of dollars mysteriously vanish into thin air? A building rock when its resonant frequency matches a gym class leaping to Snap's 1990 hit I've Got The Power? The answer is maths. Or, to be precise, what happens when maths goes wrong in the real world.

As Matt Parker shows us, our modern lives are built on maths: computer programmes, finance, engineering. And most of the time this maths works quietly behind the scenes, until ... it doesn't. Exploring and explaining a litany of glitches, near-misses and mishaps involving the internet, big data, elections, street signs, lotteries, the Roman empire and a hapless Olympic shooting team, Matt Parker shows us the bizarre ways maths trips us up, and what this reveals about its essential place in our world.

Mathematics doesn't have good 'people skills', but we would all be better off, he argues, if we saw it as a practical ally. This book shows how, by making maths our friend, we can learn from its pitfalls. It also contains puzzles, challenges, geometric socks, jokes about binary code and three deliberate mistakes. Getting it wrong has never been more fun.
The Simpsons and their Mathematical Secrets - Simon Singh

You may have watched hundreds of episodes of The Simpsons (and its sister show Futurama) without ever realising that they contain enough maths to form an entire university course. In The Simpsons and Their Mathematical Secrets, Simon Singh explains how the brilliant writers, some of the mathematicians, have smuggled in mathematical jokes throughout the cartoon's twenty-five year history, exploring everything from to Mersenne primes, from Euler's equation to the unsolved riddle of P vs. NP, from perfect numbers to narcissistic numbers, and much more.

With wit, clarity and a true fan's zeal, Singh analyses such memorable episodes as 'Bart the Genius' and 'Homer³' to offer an entirely new insight into the most successful show in television history.
The Beauty of Numbers in Nature - Ian Stewart

From a zebra's stripes to a spider's web: an engaging examination of patterns in nature and the mathematics that underlie them.
Wonders of Numbers: A brief history of all things mathematical - Johnny Ball

By introducing us to the major characters and leading us through many historical twists and turns, Johnny slowly unravels the tale of how humanity built up a knowledge and understanding of shapes, numbers and patterns from ancient times, a story that leads directly to the technological wonderland we live in today. As Galileo said, 'Everything in the universe is written in the language of mathematics', and Wonders Beyond Numbers is your guide to this language.

Mathematics is only one part of this rich and varied tale; we meet many fascinating personalities along the way, such as a mathematician who everyone has heard of but who may not have existed; a Greek philosopher who made so many mistakes that many wanted his books destroyed; a mathematical artist who built the largest masonry dome on earth, which builders had previously declared impossible; a world-renowned painter who discovered mathematics and decided he could no longer stand the sight of a brush; and a philosopher who lost his head, but only after he had died.

Enriched with tales of colourful personalities and remarkable discoveries, there is also plenty of mathematics for keen readers to get stuck into. Written in Johnny Ball's characteristically light-hearted and engaging style, this book is packed with historical insight and mathematical marvels; join Johnny and uncover the wonders found beyond the numbers.
17 Equations that Changed the World - Ian Stewart

From Newton's Law of Gravity to the Black-Scholes model used by bankers to predict the markets, equations, are everywhere -- and they are fundamental to everyday life.Seventeen Equations that Changed the World examines seventeen ground-breaking equations that have altered the course of human history. He explores how Pythagoras's Theorem led to GPS and Satnav; how logarithms are applied in architecture; why imaginary numbers were important in the development of the digital camera, and what is really going on with Schrödinger's cat.
Entertaining, surprising and vastly informative, Seventeen Equations that Changed the World is a highly original exploration -- and explanation -- of life on earth.
Why Study Mathematics? - Vicky Neale

Are you considering studying mathematics at university, having fallen in love with the subject at school? Are you ready to develop a variety of practical skills that employers need? Are you keen to have a wide range of career options after you graduate? Studying any subject at degree level is an investment in the future that involves significant cost. Now more than ever, students and their parents need to weigh up the potential benefits of university courses. That's where the Why Study series comes in. This book, aimed at students, parents and teachers, explains in practical terms the range and scope of mathematics at university level and where it can lead in terms of careers or further study. It will enthuse the reader about the subject and answer the crucial questions that a college prospectus does not.
Professor Povey's Perplexing Problems: Pre University Physics and Maths Puzzles with Solutions - Thomas Povey

In Professor Povey's Perplexing Problems, Thomas Povey shares 109 of his favourite problems in physics and maths. A tour de force of imagination and exposition, he takes us by the hand and guides us through uncompromisingly challenging territory that expands our minds and encourages a playful and exploratory approach to study. The puzzles, he says, are like toys. We should pick up the one we most enjoy, and play with it.
Whether you are an aspiring scientist or an old-hand, pitting yourself against these problems will test your ability to think, and inspire you with curiosity and enthusiasm for physics. Presented with charm and wit, the questions span the gap between high-school and university-entrance standard material. Detailed answers are lightened with a fascinating and refreshing blend of scientific history, application and personal anecdote.
On this delightful and idiosyncratic romp through pre-university maths and physics, the author shows us that behind every single one of these questions lies a new way of thinking about subjects we thought we had understood. He argues that engaging with the unfamiliar is key to forming deeper insights and developing intellectual independence. Professor Povey's Perplexing Problems is a manifesto that science should be playful, and a celebration of the curious.

April 2021


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