Imagine! Publishing, $5.95, 80 pages
What do a sewing machine, a hurricane, and Mississippi have in common? They all have eyes! These days, puzzles are all the rage, and it is time that kids had a puzzle book of their own. Tackle towers of Sudoku, solve twisted anagrams, race through twisty mazes, and try master puzzle creator Terry Stickels’ original “StickLinks.” Assembled by Stickels, Challenging Puzzles for Smart Kids contains 90 mindbenders that will keep children (and adults) busy for hours. Even reluctant mathematicians will learn to enjoy working with numbers. Crosswords and word searches introduce and reinforce new vocabulary. The book’s pages are oversized so there is plenty of room on each page for kids to work out problems and solve the puzzles without using a separate piece of paper. Teachers, try having your students solve a puzzle as you transition between subjects. Parents can use the problems to go over material learned in the classroom. Kids will work quietly in the back seat when you give this book to them as a gift on a road trip. The answer section gives thorough explanations and strategies for solving. Anagrams and logic problems promote brain cell growth (and we all could use a few more of those!).