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Rosie Amber’s Friday Five challenge is to take ONLY FIVE MINUTES to browse an unfamiliar category and select a book based solely on the cover art.

This week I picked the category that could not have been further from any place I’d willingly go: Science & Math. (More specifically—Books : Science & Math : Essays & Commentary) I started the timer, feeling pessimistic about the results. But less than a minute in, I hit paydirt: the bright red cover of MAD SCIENCE caught my eye, promising “Einstein’s Fridge, Dewar’s Flask, Mach’s Speed, and 362 Other Inventions and Discoveries that Made Our World”

Book blurb:

9780316208185365 days of inventions, discoveries, science, and technology, from the editors of Wired Magazine.

On January 30, Rubik applied for a patent on his cube (1975). On the next day, 17 years earlier, the first U.S. Satellite passed through the Van Allen radiation belt. On March 17, the airplane “black box” made its maiden voyage (1953). And what about today? Every day of the year has a rich scientific and technological heritage just waiting to be uncovered, and Wired’s top-flight science-trivia book MAD SCIENCE collects them chronologically, from New Year’s Day to year’s end, showing just how entertaining, wonderful, bizarre, and relevant science can be.

In 2010, Wired’s popular “This Day in Tech” blog peaked with more than 700,000 page views each month, and one story in 2008 drew more than a million unique viewers. This book will collect the most intriguing anecdotes from the blog’s run-one for each day of the year-and publish them in a package that will instantly appeal to hardcore techies and curious laypeople alike.




Book Title: Mad Science: Einstein’s Fridge, Dewar’s Flask, Mach’s Speed, and 362 Other Inventions and Discoveries That Made Our World

Price: $7.72/£4.99

Reviews: 23 for a total of 4.8 out of 5 stars (with almost 83% as 5-star)

Pages: 400

My Analysis: The price was pretty high for an impulse purchase (and even higher if you opt for the $18.48 hardbound edition). But I had several minutes still to go on the timer, so I opened the “Look Here” page. Each entry was a bite-sized technology tidbit of what happened that day in science history, just right for a science-challenged person like me. I passed The Gregorian Calendar (January 1, 1583), AC/DC Current Events (or, Edison Fries an Elephant) (January 4, 1903), and down through entries on Pong, a Game Any Drunk Can Play (November 29, 1972) And then I saw it: Dawn of the Mac (January 22, 1984)…the commercial on Superbowl XVIII directed by Ridley Scott that changed my life. Apparently, inside my IBM world was an Apple geek just waiting for that 9-inch screen. Who knew? So… my life is part of science history? Sold! (Well, not the hardbound, of course…)


Rosie Amber's Friday Five Challenge. Get yourself a cuppa and give yourself 5 minutes.

Rosie Amber’s Friday Five Challenge. Get yourself a cuppa and give yourself 5 minut

Here is Rosie’s Friday Five Challenge. It only took five minutes and a couple more to write up, and was a ton of fun. I hope you’ll consider joining in. All Rosie asks is that you link back to her original post here so we can all join in viewing your challenge results.

AUTHORS – You often only have seconds to get a reader to buy your book, is your book cover and book bio up to it?

My Friday Five Challenge is this….. IN ONLY FIVE MINUTES….

  1. Go to any online book supplier,
  2. Randomly choose a category,
  3. Speed through the book covers, choose one which has instantly appealed to your eye,
  4. Read the book Bio/ Description for this book, and any other details.
  5. If there are reviews, check out a couple,
  6. Make an instant decision, would you BUY or PASS?
  7. I’ll be back next week with another Friday Five Challenge, do feel free to join in.