The Professor Googol Flying Time Machine and Atomic Space Capsule Math Primer


Fiction - Graphic Novel/Comic
179 Pages
Reviewed on 06/26/2012
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Author Biography

SamuelW. Valenza, Jr., born in Mt. Holly, New Jersey, experienced a memorable boyhood, punctuated with escapades on the unspoiled Rancocas Creek, and highlighted by incidents that youngsters of today can only dream about. And although they were much simpler times, the Author can still recall the agony which he and his peers suffered in his high school math courses. Although the Rancocas is no longer polluted, and no boys will ever again huddle under the Pennsylvania Reading Seashore Lines’ trestle while a steam locomotive thunders overhead, one thing has remained constant. The agony and apathy still exist in high school math courses, but now the Author sees it from the other side of the desk. The intervening years, from one side of the desk to the other, were spent in the U.S. Marine Corps and the U.S. Naval Academy, and after that in a variety of jobs and locations as a technical artist, illustrator, Editor, CEO, Art Director, and advertising artist with the Philadelphia Inquirer. His cartoons and articles have appeared in the Dover Advance, Shipmate, The Rutgers Gleaner, the Third World Journal, True Magazine, the Philadelphia Inquirer and Lottery and Casino News. Mr. Valenza graduated Rutgers (B.A.,Math) in 1972. Since then he has taught math at the high school and college level and been involved in newspaper, magazine and book publishing. He is currntly working on a series of graphic novel presentations in Algebra and Geometry.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Anne Boling for Readers' Favorite

"Professor Googols Flying Time Machine and Space Capsule Math Primer" by Samuel W. Valenza, Jr., is the answer to the dreaded MathPhobia! Valenza is a genius; he makes learning math fun and easy. Kids love comic and graphic books. This one fits both descriptions. This book has 9 chapters and 144 pages with an extra 29 pages for the math instructor. The focus of this book is to demonstrate the numberline. Velenza has included a lot of humor in this book. It can and should take the place of a text book or work book for there are questions and places to record the readers' answers. The tale begins with Sargent Analog receiving the command to line up the numbers and count them without missing any. At first the reader will notice utter chaos because the numbers are jumping around in an unorganized manner. Poor Sarge can't get past the number two. The book continues by introducing readers to Al Nalysis, who helps to get things organized. Concepts taught are whole numbers, rational numbers, and prime numbers. At first the numbers try to be organized by clubs.

I admit I have always had Mathphobia and am mathematically challenged, meaning I have to think through math problems. Math does not come easy to me. My husband can rattle the answers to math problems off the top of his head, but I am careful to think through each one. WHERE WAS THIS BOOK WHEN I WAS IN SCHOOL? Samuel W. Valenza, Jr.'s illustrations are pen and ink (I think), the characters all look cartoonish and will appeal to most, if not all, students of a wide age range. The "Math Primer" will prepare students for Number Theory and Algebra. The questions at the end of each chapter will reinforce what was taught in the chapter. I applaud Valenza's unique, original and outstanding method of teaching math, making it fun and taking out the intimidation. This book should be a requirement in all math classrooms.