Another Newton and the Counterfeiter note: I like Carl Zimmer’s taste in books/Nature department

Nothing is as satisfying as the praise of one’s colleagues — especially the really good ones — which is why Nature’s Summer Books feature in the July 30 issue is so delightful.  There Carl Zimmer has this to say about Newton and the Counterfeiter (AmazonPowells,Barnes and NobleIndiebound):

Imagine Isaac Newton as a policeman, using his brilliant intellect to pursue the most elusive thieves of his day. It sounds like a ridiculous example of historical fiction — except that it actually happened. In Newton and the Counterfeiter, Thomas Levenson recounts how Newton became Warden of the Royal Mint and pursued a master forger, William Chaloner. Levenson’s account of the struggle between these two masterminds is fascinating on its own, but he also uses this historical episode to show how the modern economy took shape in the late 1600s.
The book’s resonance with today’s economic upheavals seems almost too good to be true. Would you believe that Isaac Newton lost much of his fortune in a financial crash? The physicists whose models of financial risk lie in ruins today can take some comfort in Levenson’s stranger-than-fiction tale.

Imagine Isaac Newton as a policeman, using his brilliant intellect to pursue the most elusive thieves of his day. It sounds like a ridiculous example of historical fiction — except that it actually happened. ….  Levenson’s account of the struggle between these two masterminds [Newton and his nemesis, William Chaloner] is fascinating on its own, but he also uses this historical episode to show how the modern economy took shape in the late 1600s.

The book’s resonance with today’s economic upheavals seems almost too good to be true. Would you believe that Isaac Newton lost much of his fortune in a financial crash? The physicists whose models of financial risk lie in ruins today can take some comfort in Levenson’s stranger-than-fiction tale.

It’s always great when a reader takes pleasure — and more — from something you’ve written.  It’s better still when you know the reader is one of the best science writers and journalists working today.  It’s even better when you get to see the company your book keeps — fourteen very sharp people recommending  fourteen works…to produce a list my book is blushing to be part of.

Explore posts in the same categories: good books, good public communication of science, good writing, Isaac Newton, Newton and the Counterfeiter, Newtoniana, Self-aggrandizement

2 Comments on “Another Newton and the Counterfeiter note: I like Carl Zimmer’s taste in books/Nature department”

  1. BCC Says:

    Right on. I really should get around to buying your book… vacation coming up…

  2. dianeb Says:

    About your book, I am enjoying it on my Kindle.

    One question if I may: the fake timepieces Chaloner manufactured–how large were these? Or maybe the question should be, what size were the sex toys that could fit in these pocket watches? Which leads to another question, why would a man want to carry one around (the toy, that is)? Good material for your next book, I would think. 😉


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