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I remember when I was a child or young teen (~late 90s / 2000s) I had two books that were illustrated in a cartoon style. One covered math topics like the Fibonacci sequence, the golden ratio, googol. The other wasn't math related, but I remember reading about Zen, specifically that money rolls out of a house built on a hill with a straight driveway.

The illustrations were in a style very similar to "Everything Kids" books, but they were not workbooks, just for reading (I think).

I would very much like to find these books again. Does anyone know about them?

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    Are the two books related in any way other than the illustrations? If they're separate books, it might be best to ask two separate [identification-request] question (linking the Qs, of course), so that answers can be organized and focused under the standard one-question-per-question framework.
    – bobble
    Jan 23 at 17:48
  • @bobble my memory is foggy but I think they're closely related -- same publisher, format, illustration style.
    – Matthias
    Jan 24 at 20:20

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The first one sounds like it might be one of the Murderous Maths series of illustrated maths books for children by Kjartan Poskitt. I found a sample illustration related to the Fibonacci sequence and golden ratio, and also a picture of the book covers (not all of them as there were also two books named simply Murderous Maths and More Murderous Maths before the series on more specific topics):

Fibonacci book covers

Characters used in stories to illustrate mathematical principles included: Professor Fiendish, the wacky Pure Mathematicians, the evil Gollarks from Planet Zog, the seven gangsters of the Boccelli and Gabrianni families, and the barbarians Urgum the Axeman, Grizelda the Grisly, etc. (about whom a spin-off series of pure fiction novels was also written).

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  • Thanks for those suggestions. Those books look interesting, but the ones I remember were not stories or novels; more like school books, but for leisurely browsing, where each page was its own topic.
    – Matthias
    Jan 24 at 20:23
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The Number Devil by Hans Magnus Enzensberger

Front cover of The Number Devil

In twelve dreams, Robert, a boy who hates math, meets a Number Devil, who leads him to discover the amazing world of numbers: infinite numbers, prime numbers, Fibonacci numbers, numbers that magically appear in triangles, and numbers that expand without end. As we dream with him, we are taken further and further into mathematical theory, where ideas eventually take flight, until everyone--from those who fumble over fractions to those who solve complex equations in their heads--winds up marveling at what numbers can do.

I loved this one as a kid. It has a narrative structure, kind of like Alice in Wonderland or Flatland. The Fibonacci sequence and the golden ratio are mentioned, and there are no problem sets or exercises.

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