Jim Holt writes about science and philosophy. His latest book is Why Does the World Exist? An Existential Detective Story.
Love and Math: The Heart of Hidden Reality by Edward Frenkel
The Fractalist: Memoir of a Scientific Maverick by Benoit B. Mandelbrot
Turing’s Cathedral: The Origins of the Digital Universe by George Dyson
Four Colors Suffice: How the Map Problem Was Solved by Robin Wilson
The Annotated Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions by Edwin A. Abbott, with an introduction and notes by Ian Stewart
Flatterland: Like Flatland, Only More So by Ian Stewart
Reasoning with the Infinite: From the Closed World to the Mathematical Universe by Michel Blay, Translated from the French by M.B. DeBevoise
The First Moderns: Profiles in the Origins of Twentieth-Century Thought by William R. Everdell
Abraham Robinson: The Creation of Nonstandard Analysis, a Personal and Mathematical Odyssey by Joseph Warren Dauben
Non-standard Analysis by Abraham Robinson
Frédéric Chopin was “the greatest master of counterpoint since Mozart”—so claimed the late pianist and author Charles Rosen in a 1987 review in these pages. At the time I read this, it came as a double surprise to me. I had never thought of Chopin’s music as having a lot of contrapuntal interest. I had always imagined it to stress sonority over structure, to be more emotional—even sentimental—than intellectual: a sort of higher mood music.