Tricky Logic Puzzles for Adults - Steven Clontz

Being in hospital for an extended stay, my in-laws have been lovely and furnished me with puzzle books to keep me entertained. I've finally worked through one of them. So, slightly unusual for me, I'm reviewing a puzzle book.

The title of this book shows the difficulty of signalling the difficulty of your puzzle collection. A really hard puzzle book, designed for connoisseurs, would have some kind of obscure titles that only experts would know about. This is the kind of title you get when you try to signal "challenging for beginners".

And, I think it hits the mark. There are a 137 puzzles spread across 6 genres, ranging from the slightly tedious sodoku and logic grid through to masyu and calcudoku. The cryptic puzzles provide a rather entertaining pot luck. So, a pretty good introduction to what puzzles look like nowadays.

The difficulty curve is interesting. The last half dozen or so puzzles genuinely deserve the title "tricky". The first dozen or so are a very pleasant introduction and warm-up suitable for someone who's never seen these puzzles before. Most of the book in-between, gradually ramping up in difficulty, is... "mental chewing gum" is perhaps unfair, but it's entertaining without being stressful.

To be fair, I am not the target audience of this book, being a bit too much of a puzzle fan for an introductory book. Despite that, it's been pretty entertaining. Nowadays, I tend to get my puzzles online, but if you're new to this kind of puzzle and like a physical book, I'd recommend it.

Posted 2022-03-01.