The Sand-Reckoner by Gillian Bradshaw
(Tom Doherty Associates Books)

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Synopsis

The young scholar Archimedes has just had the best three years of his life at Ptolemy's Museum at Alexandria. To be able to talk and think all day, every day, sharing ideas and information with the world's greatest minds, is heaven to Archimedes. But heaven must be forsaken when he learns that his father is ailing, and his home city of Syracuse is at war with the Romans.


Reluctant but resigned, Archimedes takes himself home to find a job building catapults as a royal engineer. Though Syracuse is no Alexandria, Archimedes also finds that life at home isn't as boring or confining as he originally thought. He finds fame and loss, love and war, wealth and betrayal-none of which affects him nearly as much as the divine beauty of mathematics.

 

About Gillian Bradshaw

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Gillian Bradshaw's father, an American Associated Press newsman, met her mother, a confidential secretary for the British embassy, in Rio de Janeiro. She was born in Washington DC in 1956, the second of four children. They didn't move around quite as much as one might expect after such a beginning: Washington was followed merely by Santiago, Chile, and two locations in Michigan. Gillian attended the University of Michigan, where she earned her BA in English and another in Classical Greek, and won the Hopwood Prize for fiction with her first novel, Hawk of May. She went on to get another degree at Newnham College, Cambridge University, England in Greek and Latin literature, and she sold her first novel while preparing for exams.She decided to stay in Cambridge another year to write another novel and think about what to do for a Real Job. However, while there, she discovered she could live on her income as a novelist and also met her husband, who was completing his doctorate in physics. Between books and children she never did get a Real Job, and she's been writing novels ever since. She and her husband now live in Coventry. They have four children and a dog.
 
Published April 1, 2010 by Forge Books. 584 pages
Genres: History, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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The Sand-Reckoner ($23.95; Apr. 6; 352 pp.; 0-312-87340-9): More historical fiction from Bradshaw (Island of Ghosts, 1998, etc.), who this time out takes us to ancient Greece.

May 20 2010 | Read Full Review of The Sand-Reckoner (Tom Dohert...

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