Friday, February 23, 2024

How to Win Friends and Influence Fungi: Collected Quirks of Science, Tech, Engineering, and Math from Nerd Nite

How to Win Friends and Influence Fungi is a fun, engaging, and yes, nerdy collection of trivia curated and collected by Dr. Chris Balakrishnan and Matt Wasowski. Released 20th Feb 2024 by Macmillan on their St. Martin's imprint, it's 296 pages and is available in hardcover, audio, and ebook formats. It's worth noting that the ebook format has a handy interactive table of contents as well as interactive links.

Nerd nite is an informal collection of fun/funny/engaging mini talks, sort of TED-lite, or Baker Street Irregulars with more self-awareness. It's illustrated throughout with catchy simple line drawings by Kristen Orr. 

The entries are arranged somewhat thematically: zoology and natural science, neurobiology, bodily fluids (yep), sex and attraction, health (lots of really cool info about gut microbiomes and other squishy stuff in this chapter), pathogens, death, space, tech, math, and jobs in STEM and related fields. 

Four stars. This would be an excellent choice for public or school library acquisition, home use, gift giving, and reference. It's not set up like most trivia catalogs and will have limited applicability to trivia team reference. It's just a collection of cool, widely varying, STEM info with a lot of humor which is layman accessible. 

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes 

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