Rudy Rucker has written forty books, both pop science and SF novels in the cyberpunk and transreal styles. He received Philip K. Dick awards for his Software and Wetware. He worked as a professor of computer science in Silicon Valley. He paints works relating to his tales. His stories can be read online his Complete Stories webpage. His for coming novel Juicy Ghosts is about telepathy, immortality, and assassinating an evil, insane President who has stolen an election. Rudy blogs at

Mathematicians in Love by Rudy Rucker

A passionate, lively tale. Two young mathematicians compete for the love of two women across space, time and logic—spinning out Dr. Seuss-like mathematical mumbo jumbo along the way. Berkeley grad students Bela Kis and Paul Bridge have discovered the mathematical underpinnings of ultimate reality. Competing for attention, Bela starts a wild rock band. And Paul hacks fundamental reality. But there are side effects. They're swept into a higher world of mathematician cockroaches and genius cone shells — bent upon experimenting with our world to decide an arcane point of metamathematics. It's up to Bela to bring them back, repair reality, stop the aliens, and find true love.



  • "Rucker cleverly pulls off a romantic comedy about mathematicians in love. This excursion into alternative versions of Berkeley, California, is full of quirky, charming life-forms human and otherwise and ruled by a god who's the female jellyfish-creator of Earth. All this seethes around Bela Kis; Bela's roommate, Paul Bridge; and Bela's girlfriend, Alma Ziff, who ping-pongs between them in a sometimes acute, sometimes obtuse love triangle. Bela and Paul struggle for their PhD degrees under mad math genius Roland Haut by inventing a paracomputer 'Gobubble' that predicts future events. Rucker's wild characters, off-the-wall situations and wicked political riffs prove that writing SF spoofs, like Bela's rock music avocation, 'beats the hell out of publishing a math paper.'"

    – Publisher’s Weekly
  • "Mathematicians in Love ... percolates with off-the-wall characters and trippy extra-dimensional shenanigans. Nobody writes math-based science fiction like Rudy Rucker does. He keeps the tone light and the action playful, even as his characters grapple with the meaning of tragedy and the ultimate mechanics of the universe. A definite high point in Rucker's singular writing career."

    – San Francisco Chronicle
  • "All the pleasures of a Rucker novel come forth abundantly: playfully weird higher physics and math; bizarre conceptual psychedelia; distinctively Calfornian counter-cultural comedy; zany romance; doppelgangers; generally happy endings. ... Mathematicians in Love is an engaging and entertaining book, light yet thought-provoking, funny yet of some gravity. It deserves success."

    – Locus



My tale begins on an alternate Earth in the university town that we called Humelocke, a close match for your Berkeley. And the book will end with me here in your San Jose, California, writing up my adventures—and preparing to move on.

To make my story easier to read, I won't use each and every alternate place name we had on my original world. But I'll keep "Humelocke," in fond memory of that specific place and time where I first came to know wonder, madness, and love.

It was an April morning in Humelocke, and I was working on my Ph.D. thesis; that is, I was staring out my apartment window and imagining Minkowski hyperplanes buttressed by homotopy sheaves, with the whole twinkling cloud castle tethered to a trio of animated figurines shaped like, oh, a rake, a fish, and a teapot. Three morphons.

Say what? I'm a mathematician.

My thesis adviser, Roland Haut, had set me in pursuit of a fabulous mathematical unicorn called the Morphic Classification Theorem. I was up to my ears in student loan debt, and I wanted to finish very soon. Another doctoral candidate was on the hunt as well, Paul Bridge, who happened to be my roommate. Paul was making better progress.

As I thought of Paul, my view of mathematical paradise dissolved and I was staring at a puny tree in our apartment complex's dingy courtyard. Mathematics lent even this humble object some borrowed glory. The leaf-bud-studded branches were rocking in the fitful spring breeze and, the branches being compound pendulums, their motions were deliciously chaotic. I savored the subtle whispering of the wind. Combining the sights and sounds, I could visualize the turbulent air currents in the wind-shadow of the tree: corkscrews and vortex tubes, realtime physical graffiti far gnarlier than the sheaves and hyperplanes I kept trying to dream. Why was I trying to outthink Nature? Why not embrace the world and go surfing?