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The Manga Guide to Biochemistry--New from No Starch Press: Manga Guide Series Helps Students Master Math and Science

November 15, 2011

San Francisco, CA, November 15, 2011—America has a problem. According to studies by the Program for International Student Assessment, American students scored lower in math and science than their counterparts in most of the developed world. The Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study had similar findings, ranking American students behind those in South Korea and Russia. Parents, educators, and politicians are searching for new ways to teach these critical subjects, but what's the solution?

San Francisco-based geek book publisher No Starch Press thinks it has part of the answer: educational comics. Since 2008, No Starch Press has been translating and publishing a unique series of Manga Guides (originally from Japan) that offer comic introductions to tough topics like Calculus, Physics, Molecular Biology, and Relativity. It's called educational manga or edumanga, and it works.

The Manga Guides have already helped hundreds of thousands of students worldwide learn complicated math and science topics. Critics praise the books as "stimulation for the next generation of scientists" and "a great fit of form and subject." The series uses authentic Japanese comics and an engaging story to make their subjects accessible and to keep the reader's attention as they learn.

The latest volume, The Manga Guide to Biochemistry (No Starch Press, Nov. 2011, 272 pp., $24.95, ISBN 978-1-59327-276-0), tackles tricky topics like how the body metabolizes carbohydrates, lipids, and alcohol; how mitochondria produce ATP; and how DNA is transcribed into RNA. The book follows the protagonist, Kumi, as she unlocks the secrets of healthy eating by learning the science of biochemistry. She is helped along the way by her brainy friend Nemoto; his biochemistry professor, Dr. Kurosaka; and a friendly endoscopic robot named Robocat.

The easily digestible comic format is a welcome reprieve for college and high school students tired of dry textbooks and is also engaging for younger readers interested in learning real math and science. "The Manga Guides are great supplements to college-level courses, but we've also heard from parents whose nine- and ten-year-olds learned statistics and physics from these books," said No Starch Press Publisher William Pollock. "The story and comics almost hide the fact that readers are actually gaining solid technical knowledge. What an exciting way to open the eyes of so many to the wonders of math and science."

For more information or to interview No Starch Press Publisher William Pollock, contact Rachel Waner at No Starch Press (nostarchpr@oreilly.com, +1.415.863.9900 x109), or visit www.nostarch.com.

Sample spread from The Manga Guide to Biochemistry:

book spread
About the Author

Masaharu Takemura is an Associate Professor at the Tokyo University of Science who specializes in molecular biology and life science. A Doctor of Medical Science, he has written several books about biology.

Additional Resources
Chapter 1: What Happens Inside Your Body? (PDF)
High-Resolution Cover Image
Table of Contents
Detailed Table of Contents (PDF)
Index (PDF)
No Starch Press Catalog Page

The Manga Guide to Biochemistry The Manga Guide to Biochemistry
Publisher: No Starch Press
by Masaharu Takemura, Kikuyaro, and Office Sawa
ISBN 9781593272760, $24.95 USD  
November 2011, 272 pp.

Request Review copy

Available in fine bookstores everywhere in November, from http://www.oreilly.com/nostarch or directly from No Starch Press (http://www.nostarch.com, orders@nostarch.com, 1-800-420-7240).

About the Manga Guide Series
Each volume in the Manga Guide series explains essential scientific and technical subjects using Japanese-style comics. Co-published with Ohmsha, Ltd. of Tokyo, Japan, each guide is written by a scientist or mathematician with expertise in the field and illustrated by a professional manga artist and scenario writer, ensuring the authenticity and accuracy readers demand. Bestsellers in their original Japanese, these unique books are translated into English with the assistance and oversight of technical experts. Titles in the series include The Manga Guide to Statistics (9781593271893), Databases (9781593271909), Electricity (9781593271978) Physics (9781593271961), Calculus (9781593271947), Molecular Biology (9781593272029), Relativity (9781593272722), and the Universe (9781593272678).

About No Starch Press
Founded in 1994, No Starch Press is one of the few remaining independent computer book publishers. We publish the finest in geek entertainment—unique books on technology, with a focus on open source, security, hacking, programming, alternative operating systems, LEGO, science, and math. Our titles have personality, our authors are passionate, and our books tackle topics that people care about. Visit http://www.nostarch.com for a complete catalog.

About Ohmsha
Founded in 1914, Ohmsha is a science and engineering book publisher based in Tokyo, Japan. In addition to publishing dozens of titles a year in Japan, Ohmsha is also active in foreign projects, including co-publications with major publishers in Europe, North America, and Asia, and joint ventures with major international publishers. With the aim of contributing to the development and progress of science and technology in Japan, Ohmsha established The Promotion Foundation for Electrical Science and Engineering in 1951. Through this foundation, the OHM Technology Award is given every year to those who have made significant contributions to the field of electrical engineering.

About O’Reilly

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