Dad of Divas' Reviews: Book Review - The Manga Guide to Linear Algebra

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Book Review - The Manga Guide to Linear Algebra

About the DVD 
With acclaimed titles like The Manga Guide to Physics and The Manga Guide to Calculus, the best-selling Manga Guide series from No Starch Press is changing the way students think about math and science. By combining real mathematical content with authentic Japanese manga, the Manga Guides take the sting out of learning complex topics.

The latest in the series, The Manga Guide to Linear Algebra (No Starch Press, May 2012, 264 pp., $24.95, ISBN 9781593274139), helps math and computer science students wrap their brains around a tricky required course—linear algebra. The book uses the story of a university student and her tutor (a wannabe karate champ) to keep readers engaged while they learn the fundamental concepts of linear algebra.

In this book, Reiji wants two things in life: a black belt in karate and Misa, the girl of his dreams. Luckily, Misa's big brother is the captain of the university karate club and is ready to strike a deal: Reiji can join the club if he tutors Misa in linear algebra.

Follow along in The Manga Guide to Linear Algebra as Reiji takes Misa from the absolute basics of this tricky subject through mind-bending operations like performing linear transformations, calculating determinants, and finding eigenvectors and eigenvalues. With memorable examples like miniature golf games and karate tournaments, Reiji transforms abstract concepts into something concrete, understandable, and even fun.

As you follow Misa through her linear algebra crash course, you'll learn about:
  • Basic vector and matrix operations such as addition, subtraction, and multiplication 
  • Linear dependence, independence, and bases 
  • Using Gaussian elimination to calculate inverse matrices 
  • Subspaces, dimension, and linear span 
  • Practical applications of linear algebra in fields like computer graphics, cryptography, and engineering  
But Misa's brother may get more than he bargained for as sparks start to fly between student and tutor. Will Reiji end up with the girl—or just a pummeling from her oversized brother? Real math, real romance, and real action come together like never before in The Manga Guide to Linear Algebra.

My Take on the Book
I have had the chance to review other Manga Guides and this one continues the trend of breaking down conceivably difficult topics into easier to understand components. Like the Manga Guide on Biochemistry that I reviewed before, though I was not familiar with the topics in the field before reading the book, I came out with a much better understanding and appreciation after reading this. Whether you have studied this topic before or you are new like I was, this book will open your eyes and break down a mind-dizzying topic into something much more manageable that all can understand!

All opinions expressed in this review are my own and not influenced in any way by the company.  Any product claim, statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer or provider. Please refer to this site's Disclaimer  for more information. I have been compensated or given a product free of charge, but that does not impact my views or opinions.

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