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There Are No Electrons: Electronics for Earthlings Review by Josiah Wright and Dr. Anne Margaret Wright

By Kenn Amdahl
Clearwater Publishing Company, Inc.
PO Box 778
Broomfield, Colorado 80038

There Are No Electrons: Electronics for Earthlings is a funny, quirky little book that is capable of teaching electronic blockheads (such as myself) the inner workings of resistors, capacitors, vacuum tube diode rectifiers, and, above all, the creative use of jargon! This book, written as a novel, teaches the basics of electronics in a fun, entertaining way. It is totally self-sufficient, not even requiring the construction of a single circuit--although adventurous souls can certainly apply the principles in the book to their very own electronic circuits.

The book can be read in long reading sessions or in snippets here or there. Each chapter is extremely short and can be read in just a few minutes. The basics of electronics are presented step-by-step with entertaining examples (buffalo, sports cars, and Greenies come to mind--don't ask). And when I say basics, I really mean basics--right down to the battery-wire-light bulb circuit. However, they are presented in a way that is not patronizing but informative. The book seems to be written mostly for high schoolers through adults, and though the book is meant to be a fun way to learn about electronics on the side, it would be very well suited toward a unit study by a homeschool family.

As a 12-year-old science nut, I think this book is totally awesome! Finally, a book that deciphers the mumbo-jumbo of electronics and turns it into something understandable and even entertaining! This jewel of a book deserves to be in the homes of every formerly electronically illiterate person in the world. A word of caution, however: There are brief references that some parents may find objectionable, such as matter-of-fact references to beer. A few of the explanations weren't very clear and could use some clarification, but most were very helpful and informative.

So, in conclusion, I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who wishes they knew about electronics but has been too afraid to step into the abyss of electronics jargon. After revading this book, you'll be spouting off words like "piezoelectric," "mutual inductance," and "overall capacitance" with confidence!

Product review by Josiah Wright and Dr. Anne Margaret Wright, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, May 2007