a list compiled by Alex Kasman (College of Charleston)

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Mr. Churchill's Secretary (2012)
Susan Elia MacNeal
(click on names to see more mathematical fiction by the same author)

After graduating with a degree in mathematics from Wellesley, Maggie Hope plans to go on to graduate studies at MIT, but her plans change unexpectedly when a letter from England gets her instead looking into her own family history and, as the title implies, working for the Prime Minister. Her attempt to learn about her own family and the difficulties suffered by the British during World War II are the main points of interest in the novel, but her interest and abilities in mathematics are also mentioned from time to time.

(quoted from Mr. Churchill's Secretary)

"You're a smart girl," Snodgrass said to her, " and that's good. You'll have intelligent children. But isn't it more important to worry about your appearance and not calculations? Let the boys like John here take care of it. Stick to the typing please."

Fortunately, there are those there who better appreciate the value of her mathematical abilities (e.g. the aforementioned "John") and she gets to use them in the hunt for a Nazi spy at Bletchley Park.

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Works Similar to Mr. Churchill's Secretary
According to my `secret formula', the following works of mathematical fiction are similar to this one:
  1. Princess Elizabeth's Spy: A Maggie Hope Mystery by Susan Elia MacNeal
  2. All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
  3. Turbulence by Giles Foden
  4. The Bed and the Bachelor by Tracy Anne Warren
  5. The Art Student's War by Brad Leithauser
  6. The Cipher by John C. Ford
  7. A Disappearing Number by Simon McBurney
  8. The Mathematician's Shiva by Stuart Rojstaczer
  9. The Chosen by Chaim Potok
  10. The Lady's Code by Samantha Saxon
Ratings for Mr. Churchill's Secretary:
RatingsHave you seen/read this work of mathematical fiction? Then click here to enter your own votes on its mathematical content and literary quality or send me comments to post on this Webpage.
Mathematical Content:
1/5 (1 votes)
Literary Quality:
2/5 (1 votes)

GenreHistorical Fiction, Adventure/Espionage,
MotifWar, Female Mathematicians,

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May 2016: I am experimenting with a new feature which will print a picture of the cover and a link to the page for a work of mathematical fiction when it is available. I hope you find this useful and convenient. In any case, please write to let me know if it is because I would be happy to either get rid of it or improve it if that would be better for you. Thanks! -Alex

(Maintained by Alex Kasman, College of Charleston)