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The Italian in Need of an Heir (2020)
Lynne Graham

Maya is a beautiful British "maths whizz" who, if she had her way, would be working in an academic job doing research. She also is usually unwilling to put up with men who boss her around. But, her family is desperately poor and so she essentially has no choice but to wed a gorgeous, wealthy, and arrogant Italian man who (for purely financial reasons, of course) must quickly marry and produce an heir.

Since this is a romance novel -- it's Book 2 in Harlequin's Cinderella Brides for Billionaires series, to be more precise -- you can probably guess how that works out. Actually, that's all I'm able to do since I haven't read the entire book. If you have then please write to let me know more, especially anything related to math(s)!

I did read the opening pages which were available for free at Amazon. So, I know that we are first introduced to Maya's brilliance as follows:

(quoted from The Italian in Need of an Heir)

Maya had completed two doctorates in mathematics at university after first graduating at eighteen. Being a prodigy from an early age had only two benefits that she recognized. Firstly, academic brilliance had enabled her to finance her studies by allowing her to win scholarships and prizes and, secondly, it had given her higher earning powers in part-time jobs and projects that required a maths whizz.

After reading that, I just find myself wondering "Why did she get two doctorates in mathematics?" I know a few people who have two doctorates in different disciplines, and one person who obtained a second doctorate in mathematics in the USA (and basically hid the fact that he'd obtained one previously in another country). But, why would one brag about having two? Why would a second one be necessary unless there was something wrong with the first?

I also learned that math is extremely easy for her even though her friends think she must be working very hard:

(quoted from The Italian in Need of an Heir)

Her peers preferred to believe that she had to swot from dawn to dusk to gain the results that she did, and she let them believe that even if it was a lie. Evidently a nerdy swot was more acceptable than someone gifted at birth with a photographic memory and an IQ that ran into the highest possible triple figures. Maya had been doing algebra at the age of three; she didn't need to swot.

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Works Similar to The Italian in Need of an Heir
According to my `secret formula', the following works of mathematical fiction are similar to this one:
  1. The One Plus One by Jojo Moyes
  2. A Study in Seduction by Nina Rowan
  3. Gödel Incomplete by Martha Goddard (Writer and Director)
  4. The Hurricane by R.J. Prescott
  5. Break Your Heart by Rhonda Helms
  6. The Dark Lord by Patricia Simpson
  7. Bread & Kisses by Katherine Fitzgerald (writer and director)
  8. The Lady's Guide to Celestial Mechanics by Olivia Waite
  9. All Scot and Bothered by Kerrigan Byrne
  10. Duke with Benefits (Studies in Scandal) by Manda Collins
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MotifProdigies, Female Mathematicians, Romance,

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(Maintained by Alex Kasman, College of Charleston)