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The Translated Man (2009)
Chris Braak

Since the horrific Excelsior disaster, the subject of aetheric geometry has been banned. The ethical dilema for a young psychic is whether he should reveal to the detective he is assisting the tremendous danger he has discovered, since doing so would also reveal his own familiarity with this heretical branch of mathematics

(quoted from The Translated Man)

The mathematics that covered the walls and floor of Herman Zindel's office was, as far as Alan Charterhouse was concerned, extraordinary. As enthusiastic as he was, however, he had to be careful; Aetheric Geometry was a heresy, punishable by death. A scientific heretic didn't even get the benefit of a trial. If Beckett suspected that Alan had been dabbling in higher-plane geometry, he could simply take out his revolver and shoot him in the head.

"This is...well." Alan swallowed hard. He was looking at a group-theory proof that went a long way to solving a harmonic symmetry equation he'd been working on for a year. It was just as well his uncle was going mad. He'd have been furious if he'd recognized the mathematics scrawled in Alan's journals and on the backs of old maps. "Obviously, my father knows...knows a lot more about this sort of thing..."

"We haven't got your father." Beckett was nothing if not blunt.

"We've got you. Tell me what you can."

What am I supposed to say? Alan thought. That Zindel was coming close to re-creating Wolfram's translation formula? He had a sudden vision of his brains splattered all over the chalkboard, smearing Zindel's brilliant proofs. "It's definitely....definitely Aetheric Geometry. I mean, you don't...don't see anything like this standard cartographic or engineering applications."

The "Wolfram" referred to here is not Stephen Wolfram, but rather Harcourt Wolfram, the most famous scientist in the fictional world of this novella and the man responsible for the Excelsior disaster, in which he and others died attempting to travel from one plane of resistance to another.

Originally published in 2009 and then re-released in 2010 with "and other stories" appended to the title (and, presumably, other stories appended to the book as well).

More information about this work can be found at
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Works Similar to The Translated Man
According to my `secret formula', the following works of mathematical fiction are similar to this one:
  1. The Atrocity Archives by Charles Stross
  2. El Troiacord by Miquel de Palol
  3. Napier's Bones by Derryl Murphy
  4. Vampire World (Trilogy) by Brian Lumley
  5. Sine of the Magus [aka The Magicians] by James Gunn
  6. Calculated Risks by Seanan McGuire
  7. The Turing Option by Harry Harrison / Marvin Minksy
  8. Perelman's Song by Tina Chang
  9. Moebius Trip by Janny Wurts
  10. The Spacetime Pool by Catherine Asaro
Ratings for The Translated Man:
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 (1 votes)
Literary Quality:
3/5 (1 votes)

GenreMystery, Science Fiction, Fantasy,

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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)