The Manga Guide to Relativity
Publisher: No Starch Press
Final Release Date: April 2011
Pages: 192

Everything's gone screwy at Tagai Academy. When the headmaster forces Minagi's entire class to study Einstein's theory of relativity over summer school, Minagi volunteers to go in their place. There's just one problem: He's never even heard of relativity before! Luckily, Minagi has the plucky Miss Uraga to teach him.

Follow along with The Manga Guide to Relativity as Minagi learns about the non-intuitive laws that shape our universe. Before you know it, you'll master difficult concepts like inertial frames of reference, unified spacetime, and the equivalence principle. You'll see how relativity affects modern astronomy and discover why GPS systems and other everyday technologies depend on Einstein's extraordinary discovery.

The Manga Guide to Relativity also teaches you how to:

  • Understand and use E = mc2, the world's most famous equation
  • Calculate the effects of time dilation using the Pythagorean theorem
  • Understand classic thought experiments like the Twin Paradox, and see why length contracts and mass increases at relativistic speeds
  • Grasp the underpinnings of Einstein's special and general theories of relativity

If the idea of bending space and time really warps your brain, let The Manga Guide to Relativity straighten things out.

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No Starch PressThe Manga Guide to Relativity
 
3.8

(based on 4 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

75%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Helpful examples (4)
  • Well-written (3)

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Intermediate (3)

    Reviewed by 4 customers

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    (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Manga for Physics Geeks & Students

    By harningt

    from Fort Wayne, IN

    About Me Developer

    Verified Reviewer

    Pros

    • Accurate
    • Easy to understand
    • Helpful examples
    • Well-written

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Intermediate

      Comments about No Starch Press The Manga Guide to Relativity:

      If you have a physics curiosity , this is a fun way to sate it. "The Manga Guide to Relativity" by Masafumi Yamamoto, Keita Takatsu, and Hideo Nitta is a beautiful blend of manga, humor and science.

      I had this book for quite some time and decided to try to get through it... little did I know that I would finish it in only a few hours of reading! While I understood some of the concepts at a very high level, some of the paradoxes and details typically got me. This guide's illustrations make the complex issues easier to grasp, while the chapter reviews help explore the topics in a little more depth.

      Even though the manga was constructed with the intent of explaining the complex concepts of Special and General Relativity, it did not deviate from the tried-and-true manga recipe: bizarre scenarios, extreme characters, and strange character appearances.

      The ebook format was well-implemented and worked beautifully on my Touchpad. While some PDFs choke due to overly complex layouts, this manga was smooth to navigate and rendered beautifully. Anybody used to reading mangas using "Perfect Viewer" on Android should install the PDF plugin to read this, it works great in two-page mode.

      This ebook is a great read and its quality entices me to check out the other books in the "Manga guide to ..." series. If you're a high-school student just getting into physics or a manga fan looking for some intellectual fun, this book is a perfect addition to your collection.

      The eBook format of this book was provided free through O'Reilly's Blogger Review program.

      (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

       
      4.0

      Great intro to Relativity in Manga style

      By Peter Schott

      from DFW, TX

      Verified Reviewer

      Pros

      • Easy to understand
      • Helpful examples

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Novice
        • Student

        Comments about No Starch Press The Manga Guide to Relativity:

        I've gone through a ton of physics classes while in school and have been a sci-fi fan for a good portion of my life, so this was an interesting topic for me. I have seen the "Manga Guide" series around for a while now, though have mostly ignored them thinking that they were going to be either so high-level that they would be almost useless or so cartoonish that they would miss facts or misrepresent facts. I was wrong.

        The Manga Guide to Relativity starts out as a typical Manga story – big eyes, small mouths, odd plot, strange characters. It quickly moves from the opening premise into actually teaching about relativity and the concepts behind it. The illustrations really help grasp key points about relativity, even if they don't go very deep. The end of chapter summaries go into more detail about each chapter's topic to understand more of the facts.

        As this book is in the Manga style, I probably wouldn't recommend it for younger kids. Of course, most younger kids aren't all that interested in Relativity in the first place so this likely won't be an issue except for the comics portion. Some of the illustrations may be a bit inappropriate for younger children.

        Personally, I enjoyed the book. The PDF read well on my Nook Color. The Manga style worked well to communicate the concepts of relativity and was interesting, if a really strange story. However, strange stories are part of the appeal of Manga in the first place. I'd definitely recommend it to an older student trying to come to grips with relativity – not as a replacement text, but as something to help grasp the basic concepts.

        Disclosure – I was provided with a complimentary PDF of this book by O'Reilly in return for an unbiased review. The opinions and thoughts here are my own and were in no way influences by O'Reilly.

        (0 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

         
        2.0

        Great Explanation, Poor Delivery.

        By dpeach

        from Argentina

        About Me Educator

        Verified Reviewer

        Pros

        • Helpful examples
        • Well-written

        Cons

        • Inappropriate Images

        Best Uses

        • Intermediate

        Comments about No Starch Press The Manga Guide to Relativity:

        The book handled the concepts of relativity in a great way. Though I feel like I already understand relativity (at least as much as my brain can), I enjoyed reading a different set of examples to illustrate the principles.

        However, I disliked the delivery method. My experience with manga is that it is often sexually explicit and highly emotional. 10% of this book has the shapely teacher in a bikini teaching her one-on-one class to a teenage boy by the pool. I felt it was inappropriate and for that reason I can't recommend this book.

        [I received a free review copy of the PDF.]

        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        4.0

        Great for students, maybe not for kids

        By Leo M.

        from Carmel, Calif

        About Me Developer, Sys Admin

        Verified Reviewer

        Pros

        • Accurate
        • Concise
        • Helpful examples
        • Well-written

        Cons

        • Too difficult for kids

        Best Uses

        • Intermediate
        • Novice
        • Student

        Comments about No Starch Press The Manga Guide to Relativity:

        Since there are a bunch of other reviews that shower praise on the Manga Guide to Relativity, let me focus on the PDF version. No Starch has done a great job of giving you the complete book, including the normally hidden printing crop areas as well as a complete table of contents that will show up well in your favorite PDF reader (Preview.app on MacOSX, GoodReader, iBooks).

        One of the other things I really liked was the end-of-chapter sections where the Professor(s) delve more into the history, as well as mathematic nuts & bolts of General Relativity.

        There is no real downside to this manga, except that it manages to cover such a dense topic in ONLY 196 pages.

        So this is not really for younger children IMHO. But if you have a highschooler with an iPad, then I highly recommend the PDF of this manga.

        Disclosure: I received the eBook PDF download from O'Reilly for review purposes.

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