The Adventures of Ruby Pi Series by Tom Durwood – A Fresh Fictional Perspective that Combines History and Mathematics

Tom Durwood is an innovative author, who has been a recipient of many literary awards for his books. The two of his new books bring history and mathematics together. The entire collection that is published in two volumes takes up maths and geometry outside the banal classrooms to solving big issues in historical events with teen girls as protagonists.

In short the collection referred as the Adventures of Ruby Pi series. Each book has five stories where teen girls solve the big issues. First in the series: the Adventures of Ruby Pi and the Geometry Girls. Tom has placed special attention to Rupa, whose official name is long, thus in short she is called as Ruby Pi. She is an Indian girl living in London with her parents. She plays the lead detective in both books’ first story.

It has been re-iterated that maths and geometry is not only about numbers and shapes. Its logic and implementation could be used in real-life situations for analysis, coding, investigation, construction, understanding patterns and so on. In Geometry Girls, the first story uncovers a secret buried deep down in a school of three school friends who not only had build a tontine but also had a pact while fighting in Africa. They lost lives and their tontine was deliberately kept secret. Why? Rupa and her team discover that while engaged in revamping the cathedral of the school.

The story of candy-striped nurses may feel like snatched out of a war-fiction. The girls fight off bravely against the German tanks. How did one of the girls decoded the numbers to destroy the fuel system of the tank is a great discovery in the story. In the third story, Young Isoke saves the life of Queen Nala by identifying the colour patterns of an enemy tribe. The fourth story takes readers to China where a young girl warns authorities about natural calamities and loss of lives in Great Leap Forward.

The Adventures of Ruby Pi and the Math Girls is the second part in the series that mainly talks about mathematics. It commences with Ruby Pi being called by a cop to investigate the death of a renowned Indian mathematician. The likely case of poison death, she deducts Bayes theorem from the secret diaries of the deceased.

In many stories, double narrative runs with an objective to provide a backdrop to the current situation. However, history runs hot in Tom’s books. Jayanti, Sasha, Cassey – all girls get to the bottom of the issues only to resurface with plausible solutions. If you club both books and cogitate for a moment, it will come out that people with mathematical rationality can think out of box to solve big problems. The USP of the book is that even you don’t understand technical aspects, still you can enjoy the stories, as historical fiction has its own unsettling charm.

Tom has the idea that the book may go heavy for non-tech people, thus, he provided footnotes, historical stats, and his own conclusion to make it an engrossing reading experience. In the latest development of the series, Tom is offering a short booklet that may run as preface to all stories.

Views on the Cover and Characters:

Cover of both books is relevant, fascinating, and soothing to eyes. Undoubtedly readers will be arrested by it just at the first glance. Rupa’s (Ruby) character portrayal is as large as any celebrated detective that one can find in crime thrillers. However, other girls did a fair job within their paraphernalia.

Editor’s Note: It’s a good book for students going for mathematical-related fields such as geometry, algebra, forecasting stats, etc. They can learn the fun side of these subjects without getting in the grip of banality. History and maths – the combination is rare – but working in good health.

Title(s)The Adventures of Ruby Pi and the Geometry Girls + The Adventures of Ruby Pi and the Math Girls
AuthorTom Durwood
Edition Reviewed2022
The Asian Review Rating8 out of 10

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