May We Suggest? This post contains recommendations from a CPL librarian. To get your own customized recommendation, just fill out the May We Suggest form — you can expect results within 10 days. All suggestions can be found on the May We Suggest blog or by liking May We Suggest on facebook.

Meet a Mathematician

Meet some of the people who represent the "M" in STEAM. The mathematicians and math-whizzes who calculate and crunch the numbers. Titles are arranged so that those intended for older audiences are last, the first titles might be of interest to most readers.

Introduces trailblazing mathematician Maryam Mirzakhani from her unexpected interest in geometry as a young girl to becoming the first woman to win the world's most prestigious honor in mathematics.

Also available in: video | e-video

If Ramanujan could crack the number 1 open and find infinity, what secrets would he discover inside other numbers?

Follows Dorothy Vaughan's path from math teacher to "human computer" as well as her success as the first African American supervisor at her company.

A biography of Sophie Germain, who grew up during the French Revolution and followed her dream of studying mathematics, becoming the first woman to win a grand prize from the Royal Academy of Sciences and changing the world with her discoveries.

Shares the story of Raye Montague, who overcame racism and sexism to achieve her dream of being an engineer, becoming the first woman to lead ship design for the United States Navy.

Alan Turing by María Isabel Sánchez Vegara

Alan grew up in England, where his best friends were numbers and a little boy called Christopher. When his young friend died, Alan retreated to the world of numbers and codes, where he discovered how to crack the code of the Nazi Enigma machine.

Introduces the unconventional life and achievements of engineer and economist  William Playfair and describes how his creative expressions in math and science became the visual bar graphs and pie charts of today's world.

Annie Easley by M. M. Eboch

Annie Easley didn't plan to become a computer, but she needed a job, and she was good at math. 

An introduction to the unconventional life of the eminent mathematician describes the phenomenal math talents he demonstrated from an early age while revealing how he was often stymied by everyday tasks.

Sophie Kowalevski, was both a brilliant mathematician and a talented writer. Creative work nurtured her mathematical research, giving her a flexibility of thought she treasured. 

When Emmy Noether is born in 1882, no one knows she's going to become a visionary mathematician. Back then, girls were expected to be gentle and quiet -- definitely not geniuses. But Emmy is a genius! 

Mary Golda Ross designed classified projects for Lockheed Aircraft Corporation as the company's first female engineer. Find out how her passion for math and the Cherokee values she was raised with shaped her life and work.

A biographical novel in verse of seven girls from different time periods who used math to explore the mysteries of the universe and grew up to do innovative work that changed history.

Adult Books

Also available in: e-audiobook | video

The story of pioneer Indian mathematician Srinivasas Ramanujan and his friendship with his mentor, Professor G.H. Hardy at Cambridge University.

Love and Math tells the intertwined stories of mathematics and the adventure of one man in learning it. The result is a story about how he became one of the twenty-first century's leading mathematicians, working on one of the biggest ideas to come out of mathematics in the last 50 years.

Also available in: e-audiobook

A philosopher, mathematician, and martyr, Hypatia is one of antiquity's best-known female intellectuals. For the sixteen centuries following her murder by a mob of Christians Hypatia has been remembered as a victim of religious intolerance whose death symbolized the end of the Classical world. But Hypatia's great skill in mathematics and philosophy redefined the intellectual life of her home city of Alexandria. 

Both a vivid portrait of an eccentric genius and a layman's guide to some of this century's most startling mathematical discoveries.

Also available in: e-audiobook | video

John Nash was a mathematical genius, and a legend by age thirty when he slipped into madness. Thanks to the selflessness of a beautiful woman and the loyalty of the mathematics community -- emerged after decades of ghostlike existence to win a Nobel Prize and world acclaim.

Archimedes had a profound impact on the development of mathematics and science: from square roots to the stability of ships; number systems to levers; the value of pi to the size of the universe. Yet this same cerebral man developed machines of war that held at bay the greatest army of antiquity. 

The Imitation Game presents a historically accurate graphic novel biography of Turing's life, including his groundbreaking work on the fundamentals of cryptography and artificial intelligence. His code breaking efforts led to the cracking of the German Enigma during World War II.

Although he is most famous for the Fibonacci numbers--which, it so happens, he didn't invent--Fibonacci's greatest contribution was as an expositor of mathematical ideas at a level ordinary people could understand.