MATHEMATICAL FICTION:

a list compiled by Alex Kasman (College of Charleston)

Home All New Browse Search About

...
The Expert (1999)
Lee Gruenfeld
...

Contributed by "William E. Emba"

A techno-legal thriller centered on a trial over cryptographic exportation. The chip in question uses properties of large Mersenne primes to provide an unbreakable code. This explanation seems to be the complete mathematical content of the novel, and it is mercifully cut off by the speaker's realization that he is being too technical for his audience.

Neither the legal nor the cryptographic aspects are credible.

Contributed by Jan Birkauer

"I disagree with [Emba's] assessment. This book was not written for professional mathematicians, but for general readers. In that context, the author's explanations, which are necessarily abbreviated and overview-ish, are superb. As for the legal aspects, everything is dead-on accurate. Just remember that the laws are changing all the time, and a writer can only be responsible for the state of things at the time of the writing."

Contributed by Otis Ward

I would describe leisure reading as precious free time spent taking a chance on a writer's ability to satisfy certain literary needs. After taking in three/ four hundred pages a commited enthusiast should be rewarded with a suitable climax, only fair. Of course these parameters are very subjective.

As someone with a computer background I found the story a modest return on investment. Only because the ending seemed too timid, conventional . A wordy way of saying that I don't want to give away the ending. The characters, theme, and the author's writing style kept the story interesting.

Buy this work of mathematical fiction and read reviews at amazon.com. Amazon.com logo
(Note: This is just one work of mathematical fiction from the list. To see the entire list or to see more works of mathematical fiction, return to the Homepage.)

Works Similar to The Expert
According to my `secret formula', the following works of mathematical fiction are similar to this one:
  1. Code to Zero by Ken Follett
  2. The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown
  3. Decoded by Mai Jia
  4. The Year of the Tiger by Jack Higgins
  5. Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson
  6. 7 Steps to Midnight by Richard Matheson
  7. PopCo by Scarlett Thomas
  8. Digital Fortress by Dan Brown
  9. En busca de Klingsor (In Search of Klingsor) by Jorge Volpi
  10. Simple Genius by David Baldacci
Ratings for The Expert:
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:
3/5 (3 votes)
..
Literary Quality:
3.67/5 (3 votes)
..

Categories:
GenreAdventure/Espionage,
Motif
TopicComputers/Cryptography, Algebra/Arithmetic/Number Theory,
MediumNovels,

Home All New Browse Search About

Your Help Needed: Some site visitors remember reading works of mathematical fiction that neither they nor I can identify. It is time to crowdsource this problem and ask for your help! You would help a neighbor find a missing pet...can't you also help a fellow site visitor find some missing works of mathematical fiction? Please take a look and let us know if you have seen these missing stories anywhere!.

(Maintained by Alex Kasman, College of Charleston)