Summary and Info
Prior to ordering this tome, I read through the reviews that others had already posted. Based on those reviews, I decided to order two (2) copies, each of which were to be Christmas gifts for 14-year old boys who enjoy a good prank. I can now report that the gifts have cemented my reputation, in the minds of the recipients, as a totally cool dude who knows how to find a great gift and, in the minds of the recipients' mothers, as an incurable delinquent who can only be classified as a corruptible influence on their children.
One of the recipients, a young entrepreneurial type who will probably be his family's first millionaire, has already made (and sold to friends) a number of the items in this book --- primarily, the disposable camera TASER. He reports that he has also tested some of the items --- primarily, the disposable camera TASER ---on his older and younger siblings, much to their chagrin and irritation (and much to his delight and pleasure).
Before wrapping and sending the gifts, I scanned through the book to see what some of the projects involved and to judge whether they would be within the abilities of the recipients. While there is a bit of technical skill required, it should not be beyond the ken of the average 14-year old with mischief on his mind. (In fact, mischief can be a great motivation to learn new skills and information. Having harmless fun at someone else's expense, especially in the view of a 14-year old, is one of life's great pleasures --- especially when it involves a disposable camera TASER.)
In truth, the average 50-year old who is going on 14 will also enjoy this book. As an electrical engineer, I wish that such a book had been available when I was growing up (or, perhaps better to say, when I still has a LOT of growing up to do). It is both an educational text as well as a source of fun once a chosen project is complete.
So, do you know a 14-year old for whom you are trying to find a good gift? If he's even the least bit technically inclined (or if his father is), chances are that this book will satisfy the "evil genius" within him and will also cause your gift to be remembered long after other gifts have been forgotten.
(Please note that this is the only book from the "Evil Genius" series with which I am personally familiar. Other books in the series may or may not live up to their titles. This one does, and I would heartily recommend it.)
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