Why Gender Matters: What Parents and Teachers Need to Know about the Emerging Science of Sex Differences

3 stars out of 5

Why Gender Matters: What Parents and Teachers Need to Know about the Emerging Science of Sex Differences  This book is about the “biologically programmed” differences between boys and girls.

Pros: There is research to support some of the author’s claims in this book about some sex differences between men and women like how there really are physiological differences between a typical male’s brain and a typical women’s brain. The book also points out that generally speaking men and women hear voices slightly differently, as well.

Cons: This book, for the most part, excludes people who are not cisgender male or cisgender female. Meaning that this book isn’t really about gender differences and why it matters, it is about why the binary genders matter in society. Although there is some research to support a lot of the writer’s claims, there is also a lot of bias opinions in this book.

The writer also tends to switch between the terms “gender” and “sex” which may lead some readers to misunderstand the HUGE contrast between the two. If you would like to learn more about psychology and gender differences please pick up an actual psychology textbook.


The Math Gene

2 out of 5 stars

The Math Gene by Keith J. Devlin  The main premise of this book is that everyone is capable of learning mathematics.

Pros: This book is intended for a general audience which makes it an easy read. This book can be good for people who believe they are not “math people” and could potentially help them.

Cons: Parts of this book gets away from mathematical thinking and goes into linguistic evolution which I believe takes away from the main points in the book. The author tends to repeat himself often and gets lost supporting his ideas. This book is mainly an argument on why everyone is a math person. So, if you are looking mainly for an informative book about genes or how to think like a mathematician, this isn’t for you.

Surely You’re Joking Mr. Feynam

4 stars out of 5

"Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!": Adventures of a Curious Character: Adventures of a Curious Character by [Feynman, Richard P., Ralph Leighton]  This book contains short stories about Richard Feynman’s life.

Pro: There are a plethora of great stories including him working on the Manhattan project, breaking into safes, playing a Brazilian instrument called a frigideira, and winning a Nobel Prize in physics. He talks about his travels, people he met, and how he solved different challenging problems. By reading this book, you will understand how his curiosity both led to some great discoveries and also put him in several pickles.

Con: Some may not like all of his anecdotes. This book is more for people who want to learn about his life rather than learn about physics. He does talk about physics, but he does not get technical about it at all which depending on what you’re looking for could be a positive or negative thing.

Berlin Great Cities

3 stars out of 5

Berlin (Great Cities Collection) by Ingo Latotzki  This book covers some attractions of Berlin and goes over some of the histories of it, as well.

Pro: It makes for a great quick read about different places you could visit and explores some of the more memorable parts of Berlin such as the disappearing Berlin Wall. There are a bunch of great photos, and the authors are very positive about the city as they show it off. In the back of the book, there is a very brief timeline of Berlin from 8,000 B.C. to 1995 for you to enjoy.

Con: When reading it for information rather than a trip around the city, I found it rather boring. This book is more of a coffee table read which could be a positive thing depending on what you are looking for.

An Instant Guide to Small Pets

3 out of 5 stars

Instant Guide to Small Pets by Cecilia Fitzsimons  This book, “An Instant Guide to Small Pets: A complete guide to the wide range of small pets, from the most common to the exotic, described and illustrated in full color”, is by Cecilia Fitzsimons. It goes over some of the more common pets that are kept such as dogs, cats, birds, and some more exotic pets like snakes for instance.

Pro: It is very well put together as far as the general outline of the book. It is reader friendly and has some nice illustrations within it. It is a great beginner book if you are wanting to learn a little bit more about the origin of a pet, what to feed it, and how to take care of it.

Con: This book is a very brief reference book. It is not meant to be an in-depth book. I personally didn’t get a whole lot out of it.

The Mayflower: A History from Beginning to End

3 stars out of 5

Mayflower: A History From Beginning to End  Pro: This book is around 53 pages long, so, it is a quick read. It contains brief information on the Puritans and Pilgrims. For the most part, the book celebrates how brave the passengers on the Mayflower were when they adventured out to sea and arrived at their destination. Although, of course, not all of them made it alive.

Con: This book is far too short to really explain religious differences of the passengers or to go into any if not some fine details on the main topic at hand. Some of the facts given in this book also does not match any history book I have read thus far which makes me conclude that the author may have reinterpreted some of the details. I did like this book, but I would not recommend this book as it lacks a lot of significant information.

Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions

4 out of 5 stars

Flatland by Edwin A. Abbott  Tip: *Read the illustrated version. The text refers to the pictures as means of explaining the overall story. If you read the text only version, you will be robbed of the full experience of this wonderful book.

Prior to Reading: This book is fantastic if you understand that it is a satire of Victorian England’s class system. It is also important to understand that this book is a metaphor for higher dimensions which is an extremely important topic in both physics and mathematics.

Pro: The book,”Flatland”, does a terrific job explaining how difficult it is for people to comprehend higher dimensions as most of us have no real concept of dimensions higher than our own. This is a great book for people who want to read something quickly and understand more about both lower and higher dimensions.

Con: If you don’t know anything about different dimensions, this book may seem like utter nonsense. If you don’t know anything about Victorian England’s class system, then, you will not catch and enjoy all of the indirect references to it.