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Customer Review

on 22 October 2013
Simon Singh's Fermat's Last Theorem: The story of a riddle that confounded the world's greatest minds for 358 years and The Code Book: The Secret History of Codes and Code-breaking were riveting in large part because of Singh's talent for interweaving history, intrigue and the mathematical sciences into an easy-to-digest narrative.

But whilst The Simpsons and their Mathematical Secrets contains a degree of material for the mathematically curious, the other qualities of Singh's previous works are lacking. Compare, for example, the backstory of how a couple of apparently plausible solutions to Fermat (which shouldn't exist) have appeared in the background in a couple of Simpsons scenes with the story of how Turing cracked the Enigma code in order to provide the allies a much needed strategic advantage over Nazi Germany. In one case we have - at best - a bit of nerdy trivia; in the other we have a story of monumental human drama.

These anecdotes of mathematician/physicist/computer scientist turned comedy writer or Futurama script spins off new math theorem may prove positively enthralling for show fans with a mathematical bent - but I suspect a good portion of readers will find them rather dull.
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