Seth's Reviews > The Equation That Couldn't Be Solved: How Mathematical Genius Discovered the Language of Symmetry

The Equation That Couldn't Be Solved by Mario Livio
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May 20, 10

Read in May, 2010

I mostly enjoyed this book, but like others have said, it's a mixed bag, with the book sort of going all over the place. I liked the digressions into the biographies of Galois and Abel, but by the time the book got to the last chapters, it was just too much of "and here's another example of symmetry!" for two pages, and then "here's another example of symmetry!" for another two pages. That said, I enjoyed large chunks of the book. A bit less breadth and a bit more depth would perhaps have been better. My favorite part of the book is the way the author relates the circumstances of Galois' and Abel's lives to their research and how it was received at the time. Makes grad school look not so bad. At least you don't die in a duel.

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