a list compiled by Alex Kasman (College of Charleston)

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Tre per zero (1997)
T. Sclavi (writer) / B. Brindisi (artist)

An Italian comic book whose title translates as "Three Times Zero".

Contributed by Marco Abate

A very surreal story where a (stereotypical but non-trivial) mathematician "discovers" that three times zero equal three, and we see how life in Bellybutton, England, changes as a result (death taking a well-deserved vacation helps too). The "butterfly effect" makes a non-credited cameo appearance, but the real star is the turkey.

Published in Dylan Dog 125, Sergio Bonelli Editore, Milano, 1997, 94 pp.

Contributed by Lapo Fanciullo

The plot is made of many parallel stories and only towards the end we understand how they're related. The mathematician appears in one of the subplots, and the "discovery" that 3*0=3 is the only explicit mathematics mentioned (although the backbone of the story is based on the large effect a small cause can have, as in everyday fictional chaos theory).

But, if you look closely at the scribbling on the mathematician's blackboard, you'll see that part (only part) of it actually makes sense: for instance, it begins as 3*0 = 3*(x-x) = 3*(d(x^2 /2)/dx - d(x^2 /2)/dx) =...

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Works Similar to Tre per zero
According to my `secret formula', the following works of mathematical fiction are similar to this one:
  1. Big Numbers by Alan Moore / Bill Sienkiewicz
  2. Storm: The Chronicles of Pandarve by Martin Lodewijk (writer) / Don Lawrence (artist)
  3. The Phantom Scientist [Le Chercher Phantôme] by Robin Cousin
  4. I padroni del caos by A. Russo (writer) / Esposito Brothers (artists)
  5. La formula di Ramanujan by Marco Abate (writer) / P. Ongaro (artist)
  6. Geometria dell'apocalisse by Marco Abate (writer) / R. Bogagni (artist)
  7. Il Lemma di Levemberg by Marco Abate (writer) / S. Natali (artist)
  8. The Adventures of Topology Man by Alex Kasman
  9. 1963 by Alan Moore
  10. It was the Monster from the Fourth Dimension by Al Feldstein
Ratings for Tre per zero:
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:
1/5 (1 votes)
Literary Quality:
3/5 (1 votes)

GenreScience Fiction,
TopicAlgebra/Arithmetic/Number Theory, Chaos/Fractals, Logic/Set Theory,
MediumGraphic Novel/Comic Book/Manga,

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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)