The story of the puzzles, brainteasers, maps, codes, and other mysteries that have entertained and confused the world over the last century
From Sudoku to crosswords, Victorian parlor games to lateral thinking, cryptograms to today’s latest brainteasers, The Riddles of the Sphinx tells the little-known histories behind a host of puzzles, word games, and riddles and introduces the extraordinary geniuses, eccentrics, rivals, code crackers, and obsessives who invented them. Who would’ve thought that, for example, Sudoku, Japan’s biggest ever puzzle craze, was actually invented by a Swiss mathematician in 1873? Or that the Times crossword helped Britain win the Second World War? Readers will also find out about the mysterious “Haberdasher’s Puzzle,” what Sheryl Crow has to do with cruciverbalism, how the World Puzzle Championships are blazing a trail for international relations, and how games help us think and develop. There’s even an opportunity to play some devilish games and classic brainteasers, making this the ultimate book for puzzle addicts.
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David Bodycombe is a puzzle author and games consultant. In the United Kingdom, over two million people a day read his puzzles, and internationally his work is syndicated to over 100 newspapers.
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