A Year in Numbers

We review the seventh of this year’s nominees for Book of the Year


Kyle Evans is a maths teacher and maths based entertainer. His book A Year in Numbers  (Amazon UK, Waterstones) provides a ‘nugget’ of mathematical information for each day of the year.




The book is set up to deliver one maths fact every day. Some facts are much longer than others. Facts are collected in groups with each month having a different focus, for example, July is all about prime numbers. Additionally, a number of facts are explained in more depth in the further notes at the back of the book for a more interested reader.


Despite mathematical content being the main idea of the book, it is not overwhelming and it is easy to read. Every term used is defined and well-explained. Even if you don’t read the book in order, all mathematical terms are underlined to signify to the reader that the definition is in the glossary. The book also highlights how some branches of mathematics interlink and interact, as a number of facts explicitly refer to ones in other chapters.


The daily drip-feeding of information in the book makes the topics enticing. Despite having a degree in mathematics, I learnt many things from this book. This would also be a great book to introduce someone to a wide range of mathematical ideas, and reading it is low commitment – you can commit to reading one fact per day, right?


Every term used in the book is well explained, making it accessible for non-mathematicians. However, as a mathematician the presented facts are still interesting and the book either teaches you things, or makes you remember some nice facts you once knew. I would recommend this book to anyone with a slight interest in maths!


You can vote for your favourite book on the Book of the Year shortlist below. The winning book will be crowned the Chalkdust Readers’ Choice. Voting closes at 1pm (BST) on Saturday 30 March.

What is your favourite book on the 2023 Book of the Year shortlist?

  • That's Mathematics by Chris Smith (91%, 277 Votes)
  • Once Upon a Prime by Sarah Hart (3%, 10 Votes)
  • How to Expect the Unexpected by Kit Yates (2%, 6 Votes)
  • Short Cuts: Maths by Katie Steckles (2%, 5 Votes)
  • Headscratchers by Rob Eastaway (1%, 2 Votes)
  • The Spirit of Mathematics by David Acheson (0%, 1 Votes)
  • The Truth Detective by Tim Harford (0%, 1 Votes)
  • The Secret Lives of Numbers by Kate Kitagawa & Timothy Revell (0%, 1 Votes)
  • A Year in Numbers by Kyle D Evans (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 303

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