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Ian McColgin
12-10-2008, 12:13 PM
“The Indian Clerk” by David Leavitt (Bloomsbury USA, NY, 2007) is a lovely historical novel more or less about the mathematician Ramanujan from a perspective through his friend and mentor G.H.Hardy. It delves less into the math and the minds of mathematicians than the somewhat comparable “A Beautiful Mind”, does a great job getting at the Cambridge culture in the years either side of The Great War, and is an accessible look at life dominated by the passion of math.

You don’t need a background in the history of mathematics to enjoy this book. While a novel, it's not "Numb3ers 1914" The book’s main value is to the general reader who needs at least a glimpse at pure mind.