novel I read a few years ago - I'm thinking epic fantasy, "mathematics"

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novel I read a few years ago - I'm thinking epic fantasy, "mathematics"

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feb 10, 2013, 11:57pm

I'm trying to remember a novel I read a few years ago - I'm thinking epic fantasy. In this story there was a book about mathematics that was refered to frequently. At one point I googled it and discovered it was in fact an invention/plot device of the author. Apparently a lot of readers also thought this was a real book. Ring any bells? I'm sure it will come to me in a flash at some point but now it escapes me. If you know please let me know, thanks.

feb 11, 2013, 12:04am

Define: a few years ago. When exactly? Old or new book? Is this adult fiction or something else?

feb 11, 2013, 1:09am

Cryptonomicon or Quicksilver? The book in question there is about cryptography.

feb 11, 2013, 10:23am

OK within the last decade, definitely contemporary. The book in the novel had a specific name .. "Principles of Mathematics" something along those lines.

feb 11, 2013, 10:26am

thanks rarm but haven't read those yet. I did buy e-book Cryptonomicon on the Kindle Daily Deal for $1.99 a few weeks ago. Looking forward to reading it.

Redigerat: feb 11, 2013, 11:32am

The only fantasy-with-mathematics book I can recall is Anathem by Neal Stephenson.

The setting from the beginning is a sort of monastery where both girls and boys are taught mathematics and physics. The monastery is governed by strict rules and technology is banned.
Later in the book the main character leaves the monastery and the story turns more sci-fiish as a space craft and aliens appear.

I don't recall references to a specific book, but it's been 3 years since I read Anathem and I could easily have forgotte that detail.

feb 11, 2013, 2:18pm

Probably a low probability of being correct, but could it be Mathemagics? Your thought of epic fantasy and math brought that to mind.

feb 11, 2013, 8:56pm

I remember this book, but can't remember the title or author either! I remember googling the mathematics book also. The only book that comes to mind is The Elfin Ship by James Blaylock. I don't own a copy of it, so can't look to see if it is the right one.

Redigerat: feb 12, 2013, 12:18am

thanks timelapse.. it's on the tip of my tongue (or brain). I never read elfin ship. I thought maybe The Shadow of the Wind or one of Philip Pullman's Golden Compass novels. seem to remember young man using this book in the story to somehow develop something - wisdom, powers?

feb 12, 2013, 12:21am

This website seems like it might be a good resource to find your book: MathFictions.

feb 12, 2013, 10:16am

thanks rarm, excellent suggestion. I did check it out, seem to be getting a little closer.


Redigerat: feb 12, 2013, 11:50pm

Hey guess what? Here is the book I've been searching for ...

Thanks everyone for their excellent suggestions!

Billy D

feb 12, 2013, 11:53pm