review: manga guide to physics
What do tennis, roller-blading, baseball, bicycling, roller coasters, the fosbury flop, and nature walks all have in common? Physics! It’s time for another Manga Guide! We have reviewed them before, including Molecular Biology, Statistics, Electricity, Calculus, and Databases, and today we get to review the delightful The Manga Guide to Physics which is published by No Starch.
The Manga Guides take complex subjects and explain them within an engaging “manga” (Japanese comic book) illustrated story, to help make your learning fun. The Manga Guide to Physics is a well-indexed, 227-page book, where the lead character, Megumi is upset because, although she does well at tennis, her Physics class isn’t going so well. And the pretty Sayaka — her rival on and off the court, doesn’t mind rubbing it in. When she finds Ryota, the science geek at her school, out on the tennis court running some physics experiments, Megumi (call her “Megu”) comes up with a plan: maybe if he can help her learn physics better, she can get good enough at tennis to beat Sayaka!
Ryota agrees after Megu pretends to be hurt by one of his awkward throws of a tennis ball. She isn’t very convincing, so why is he helping her? Are they learning more about the laws of attraction than those covered in a Physics class? Each chapter continues their story as they run various experiments — which the comic format showcases excellently, in easy-to-understand ways — while Megu (and you!) learn more about physics. They cover all the various aspects of Newtons Three Laws, including acceleration, inertia, vectors, and momentum, along with kinetic, potential, and mechanical energy, as well as conservation of energy. At the end of each subject, there is a brief summary and extension of the subject covered, with titles like, “Wait a second, what’s all this sine and cosine stuff?” Despite the complexities of physics (at least, that’s how I remember it from high school), all of these areas are covered quite painlessly in the book.
I really enjoyed the book! If you are going to be studying Physics anytime soon, you should definitely order The Manga Guide to Physics quick, and get ahead of everyone else in your class, easily and enjoyably. Plus, it could help with your tennis game, too!
Below is a sample of The Manga Guide to Physics, so you can get a better feel for how the Manga Guide approach works to help you learn physics quickly and easily:
The Manga Guide to Physics (Excerpt)