Pythagorean Crimes Paperback – Oct 20 2008
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From Publishers Weekly
When Stefanos Kantartzis is found dead in his home in Athens in 1929 , his closest friend, mathematician Michael Igerinos, becomes the obvious and only suspect in his murder.Â The dead man had had an affair with Igerinos's ex-wife, and, more recently, had begun a relationship with Igerinos's former mistress. Told mostly in flashbacks, Michaelides's less-than-gripping mystery debut begins with Igerinos's first encounter with Kantartzis at the Second International Congress of Mathematicians, held in Paris in 1900.Â Since the sleuthing is secondary to the author's efforts to engage the reader in the intricacies and disputations of higher mathematics, the book's appeal will be largely limited to hardcore math fans. (Sept.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
"Pythagorean Crimes is a thriller of the mind. It's the thinking-person's answer to the Da Vinci Code. This novel gives a glimpse into the intellectually-charged atmosphere of early 20th century Europe. You're drawn into the characters' devotion to their work, and you wish you were sitting at the next table at the cafe, overhearing their conversations. Not content to just explore the personalities behind the intellectual developments of the 19th and 20th centuries, this novel makes the scholars' mathematical work as compelling as any of the characters.
Few people associate mathematics and the sciences with the bustling social scene led by Picasso and his colleagues. Tefcros Michaelides breaks the stereotypes about mathematicians and their work as he spins a compelling tale about the greatest minds of 100 years ago and their passions for their work. This novel gives us a glimpse of what it was like to be an eager, young, and up-and-coming scholar during a time where intellectual pursuits were ripe for the picking. Pythagorean Crimes shares what it's like to have a single-minded focus on a mathematical problem. This novel transports the reader (even one with no mathematical background) into a world where the pursuit of mathematical truth is an all-consuming force."
—Dr. Amy Szczepanski
The Complete Idiot's Guide to Pre-Algebra (2008)
"Pythagorean Crimes is a masterly-told story of romance, art, history, political intrigue, and mathematics, all woven together in a thriller that will be sure to captivate you from the first page to the last."
The Pythagorean Theorem: a 4,000-Year History and To Infinity and Beyond: A Cultural History of the Infinite
"Tefcros Michaelides sets his mystery of the murder of a Greek mathematics high-school teacher against the backdrop of the history of early modernism and the great philosophical questions at the heart of modern mathematics. It’s a delightful synthesis, at once great fun to read and insightful, giving a rare side view of the cultural significance of Gödel’s Incompleteness Theorem."
Uncle Petros and Goldbach's Conjecture
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
The main attractions of the book are its originality of concept, and the fact that considerable care has been taken with its design. The book is unusual in that it has several parallel strands, which are all presented with an historical perspective: in particular, apart from the mathematics, there is an artistic strand, built around Picasso, a fictional underworld/prostitution theme, and a depiction of a number of real political events. The integration of these strands has been well accomplished, and makes the book original and innovative. If you enjoy the fiction-math genre, it is certainly worth reading.
Comment - This book fails as a novel and as popular mathematics. It is atrocious as storytelling and insipid as an introduction to mathematical ideas.