Although there are a number of current and good histories of mathematics especially prepared for younger readers, this one has enough differences in its excellences to obviate comparisons. Foremost, its full visual expansion of the text goes beyond any of the others around. The pictures are generous in size and most often depict the original proofs employed by the great mathematicians. For the early history, the selection of pictures is inspired. It's a teaching text, carefully written in a well-paced prose, one especially suited to the thoughtful consideration of an often difficult-to-make-meaningful subject. The author doesn't make any compromises to flatter or lure the reluctant scholar. The abstract contributions of the Greeks, for instance, are given first place over the applications of the Romans; the practical takes second place to the theoretical and original. Another excellent feature of the text is the introduction/survey of the way in which mathematics today is pursued and applied. For any capable reader, this book is a textual/visual experience that can re-kindle the urge to learn, which, unhappily, can get easily smothered under the pressures of the how-to courses in algebra, trig, calculus, etc. It is a dramatic panorama of man's search for the logic and order in a seemingly chaotic universe.