a list compiled by Alex Kasman (College of Charleston)

Home All New Browse Search About

In the River (2006)
Justin Stanchfield

A female mathematics professor undergoes a surgical procedure to enable her to live and communicate with aquatic aliens. Her goal is to learn to understand their mathematics well enough to reproduce their advanced technology (described in terms of "zero point energy"). There is not much mathematics (she says something about them only having two numbers -- zero and one; that the sum of one and one is not two but a "bigger one"; and that their mathematics is based on some sort of harmonic analysis) but it is a nice enough little story.

Appeared first in Interzone #205, July/August 2006. And, for those who do not have access to that British SF magazine, it has been selected to appear in Dozois' The Year's Best Science Fiction Twenty-Fourth Annual Collection.

More information about this work can be found at
(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 In the River
According to my `secret formula', the following works of mathematical fiction are similar to this one:
  1. Incandescence by Greg Egan
  2. In Alien Flesh by Gregory Benford
  3. Report from the Ambassador to Cida-2 by Clifton Cunningham
  4. Dragon's Egg by Robert L. Forward
  5. The Star Dummy by Anthony Boucher
  6. The Bees of Knowledge by Barrington J. Bayley
  7. Phase IV by Mayo Simon (writer) / Saul Bass (director)
  8. Story of Your Life by Ted Chiang
  9. Signal to Noise by Eric S. Nylund
  10. Q.E.D. by Bruce Stanley Burdick
Ratings for In the River:
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:
2/5 (1 votes)
Literary Quality:
3/5 (1 votes)

GenreScience Fiction,
MotifAliens, Female Mathematicians, Romance,
MediumShort Stories,

Home All New Browse Search About

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)