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The Famous 15 Puzzle
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The Famous 15 Puzzle

4.6 5
by Jerry Slocum, Dic Sonneveld, Will Shortz (Foreword by)
 

Scramble the blocks, then slide them into numerical order…if you can!

Read the fascinating history of this perplexing puzzle, then use the problems in the book to try your hand at the addictive game. But be warned: once you pick up The Famous 15 Puzzle you may never put it down!

One of the most popular puzzles of all time, the 15 Puzzle was

Overview

Scramble the blocks, then slide them into numerical order…if you can!

Read the fascinating history of this perplexing puzzle, then use the problems in the book to try your hand at the addictive game. But be warned: once you pick up The Famous 15 Puzzle you may never put it down!

One of the most popular puzzles of all time, the 15 Puzzle was released in 1880 with the instructions, “Place the blocks in the box irregularly, then move until in regular order.” The solution sounded simple—but was it always possible? This entertaining enigma confounded millions and set off an unprecedented craze that was unrivaled until Rubik’s Cube mania a century later.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781435111363
Publisher:
Sterling
Publication date:
03/12/2009
Pages:
64
Product dimensions:
8.14(w) x 8.54(h) x 1.34(d)

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The Famous 15 Puzzle 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
Christopher_Morgan More than 1 year ago
"The Famous Fifteen Puzzle," a new book/puzzle combination by Jerry Slocum and Dic Sonneveld, tells the amazing story of the Fifteen puzzle, the 'Rubik's Cube' of the nineteenth century. Bundled with the book is an attractive, 8" x 8" wooden Fifteen puzzle so readers can try to solve the puzzle that drove their ancestors mad. The Fifteen puzzle took the world by storm in the 1880s, dwarfing the effect of Rubik's Cube in our time. In just weeks, it became so widespread that front-page headlines reported on all the people who had stopped everything to try to solve the innocent-looking puzzle. It inspired songs, poems, even political cartoons. The puzzle's goal is simple: place fifteen numbered tiles in a four-by-four square frame, out of order, then try to slide them around till they're back in order. Then why was the puzzle so (relatively) easy to solve at times, but seemingly impossible at others? This book shows why, and is especially strong in describing two key mathematical proofs about the puzzle. Both are clearly described and should be understandable to non-mathematical people. Also included are dozens of color illustrations showing the many versions of the puzzle and the ephemera associated with it. Sam Loyd, America's so-called "Puzzle King", claimed for many years to have invented the Fifteen puzzle. But did he? This well-written and illustrated book (an abridged version of the authors' earlier "The Fifteen puzzle: how it drove the world crazy"), tells the real story for the first time. Slocum's and Sonneveld's painstaking research pays off, as we follow the detective story to its surprising conclusion. But we won't reveal that piece of the puzzle here!
Andy_Liu More than 1 year ago
This is a highly recommended book which is based on the monumental treatise "The 15 Puzzle Book". The original work gives a full history of the puzzle, the essence of which is captured here in attractive modules. What sets this volume apart from its predecessor is the inclusion of a finely crafted wooden set of the puzzle with supreme tactile quality. Thus one can enjoy solving the numerous puzzles presented while musing over similar endeavor of enthusiasts of another age. For more about the author Jerry Slocum and his other books, see my review of "The Cube".
politics35 More than 1 year ago
In 2006 ,these two great Puzzlemen gave us the awesome book "The 15 Puzzle". -How it Drove the World Crazy,the puzzle that started the Craze of 1880.It is a beautiful book of superior construction,high quality paper,printing,color rendition;and so well researched that it is prized by every person who has ever loved puzzles,and the 15 Puzzle in particular.It is also an excellent account of how a worldwide Craze gets started and how it captivated millions of people.The book finally solves the greatest puzzle ever ,aboutthe 15 Puzzle;and that was;who really invented it? Not only does it give the details , proof and results of the exhausted search of the history of the puzzle,with an amazing array of illustrations of the various forms the puzzle was sold as.It also gives detailed solutions of difficult arrays to solve and proves why some arrays are unsolvable.The references at the back are invaluable to any puzzle enthuasist,particularly the books that have been written about puzzles. When one would think that when they have done all there is to be done with this classic puzzle;once again,the authors have teamed up to surprise us with this magnificently designed set.It includes a book which is a 65 page,top quality,abbreviated version of the 2006 book,accompanied by a beautifully made,wooden, 15 Puzzle. The puzzle consists of a wood tray, 8" X 8" ,with 16 , 1 1/2 X 1 1/2" wood blocks or tiles.This all comes in a sturdy slip-case with a see through top;and at an unbelievably low cost. Even if you happen to already own the 2006 book,you will want to own this set as well.It is as well made as any others I have seen and its size makes it a real joy to work with. It is an item that you will want to leave around for people to play with,and they will be intrigued by it,once they see it.It is not something that will be cast aside,but rather will beecome a game that you will keep and enjoy for many years. If you have not seen the 2006 book,you will surely want to have it as well;as it give much more of the puzzle's history and illustrations. The 15 Puzzle has entertained people ever since it became a worldwide Craze in 1880 and most people have probably seen it at one time or another.It has been produced in endless versions and it attracts the interest of anyone,young or old,puzzle enthusaist or not.Usually,it has been sold as an inexpensibe item with no accompanying history,solutions or anything else.It is produced in two different ways.Either the sliding tiles are interlocked ,and not removable from the enclosure or tray.Or,the tiles are not interlocked ,and can be removed.Removable tiles are definately preferred,particularly for those first starting to solve it,as they can easily be placed in proper order when" stuck". I have been intrigued by puzzles for over 60 years,and the 15 Puzzle has been a favorite of mine since the beginning.I read about it in a book or somewhere ,and since I was unable to find one in a store,I constructed a crude home-made version that I played with for many hours. I can only imagine how impressed I would have been if I had been able to obtain a set like this,as a young boy. The fact that this puzzle is still pupular ,and entertaining people after nearly 130 years ,certainly makes it one of the world's most popular puzzles. Both the Publishers and the Authors are to be congratulated for keeping this puzzle available and giving us such an exellent product at such a
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago