a list compiled by Alex Kasman (College of Charleston)

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The Book of Alephs (2023)
Inderjeet Mani

A writer becomes infatuated with the author of a book he is given by a bookseller. The bookseller says it is the ideal book for him personally since he is not like other people. He notices right away that something is strange about the book since the pages are numbered in unit fractions: 1/2, 1/3, 1/4, etc. but the bookseller assures him it is not an error.

Once he starts reading it, the book (entitled the The Book of Alephs, of course) resonates with the author's own experiences in a seemingly mystical way. For instance, the book begins with that very same bookseller giving someone a book and telling him that it is the ideal book for him because he is not like other people. As you might guess from the title, the book also concerns transfinite cardinals like 1, resulting in a relatively detailed discussion of uncountability and Cantor's "Diagonal Proof".

The author is a retired professor and this story appeared in the online literary magazine Litbreak.

More information about this work can be found at
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Works Similar to The Book of Alephs
According to my `secret formula', the following works of mathematical fiction are similar to this one:
  1. The Library of Babel by Jorge Luis Borges
  2. The Babelogic of Mathematics by Vijay Fafat
  3. Infinities by Vandana Singh
  4. What it Means When A Man Falls From The Sky by Lesley Nneka Arimah
  5. Damned Souls and Statistics by Robert Dawson
  6. The Lottery in Babylon [La lotería en Babilonia] by Jorge Luis Borges
  7. Cantor’s Dragon by Craig DeLancy
  8. Mathematics Disputes with Death, and the Devil Intervenes by Thomas Reed Willemain
  9. Probabilitea by John Chu
  10. Mortal Immortal by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley
Ratings for The Book of Alephs:
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Mathematical Content:
3/5 (1 votes)
Literary Quality:
4/5 (1 votes)

MediumShort Stories,

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Exciting News: The 1,600th entry was recently added to this database of mathematical fiction! Also, for those of you interested in non-fictional math books let me (shamelessly) plug the recent release of the second edition of my soliton theory textbook.

(Maintained by Alex Kasman, College of Charleston)