A sweet little book by an author who wanted to be a math teacher and hopes he can "introduce the joy of learning mathematics to every student in this world through this story".
A little girl named Katie who enjoys learning mathematics from her father finds herself in a mysterious land. However, the inhabitants are not the silly fantastical creatures of Wonderland. Instead, they are famous mathematicians (Newton, von Neumann, Halmos, etc.) who have apparently been brought there by another young girl who calls herself "The White Witch" and are forced to answer mathematical puzzles if they want to return to their homes. Moreover, unlike Alice, they need not fall down a magical rabbit hole and drink magic potions to get there. Instead, their journey is (vaguely) explained in terms of terms of four-dimensional geometry.
All of the characters are cheerful and pleasant (even "The White Witch") and the many mathematical puzzles which are sprinkled throughout are cute and entertaining. Clear and concise answers are provided, though I'm afraid I am not happy with the proposed answer to the question "*why* is 1+1 equal to 2?", which plays a special role in the story .
I have only been able to find copies of this book published in 2002, but comments from the author in the book suggest that an earlier version appeared in 1996 and that the later version includes two extra chapters.
Thanks to Vijay Fafat for bringing this book to my attention. |