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The Oxford Murders (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 5. Januar 2006

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Unusual blend of murder most foul and mathematics most pure ... a playful intellectual exercise DAILY MAIL An intellectual thriller that can be much enjoyed even by those whose grasp of mathematics is limited THE TIMES If you like your detective stories gore-free, with a strong crossword-solving element, this is for you THE TIMES The plot rattles along ... pausing occasionally to fill the reader in with a bit of necessary theoretical background'. LONDON REVIEW OF BOOKS 'Well crafted and deeply entertaining.'


On a balmy summer's day in Oxford an old lady who once helped decipher the Enigma Code is killed. After receiving a cryptic anonymous note containing only the address and the symbol of a circle, Arthur Seldom, a leading mathematician, arrives to find the body. Then follow more murders - an elderly man on a life-support machine is found dead with needle marks in this throat; the percussionist of an orchestra at a concert at Blenheim Palace dies before the audience's very eyes - seemingly unconnected except for notes appearing in the maths department, for the attention of Seldom. Why is he being targeted as the recipient of these coded messages? All he can conjecture is that it might relate to his latest book, an unexpected bestseller about serial killers and the parallels between investigations into their crimes and certain mathematical theorems. It is left to Seldom and a postgraduate mathematics student to work out the key to the series of symbols before the killer strikes again.

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Von Ein Kunde am 15. März 2006
Format: Taschenbuch
In "The Oxford Murders", the author has come up with an unusual, attractive idea for a crime novel: a series of casualties connected, through little symbolic messages sent by a killer, to Pythagorean symbology and Fermat's theorem.No mathematical knowledge is required while the reader, following the reasonings of two amateur sleuths from the Oxford academia, is introduced to some of the philosophy and aesthetics of mathematics.Overall, the plot is undemanding, but cultivated. A pleasure to read.
Kommentar 2 Personen fanden diese Informationen hilfreich. War diese Rezension für Sie hilfreich? Ja Nein Feedback senden...
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Format: Taschenbuch
Nachdem ich die Rezensionen gelesen hatte, die alle recht positiv waren, stellte ich mich auf ein tolles sehr spannendes buch ein. Das war wohl mein fehler weil ich zu hohe Erwartungen hatte und es dadurch leichter wurde mich zu enttäeuschen. Es ist nicht schlecht, aber ich habe einfach mehr erwartet. Manchmal hatte ich den Eindruck dass der Author auf keinen spezifisches Ziel hinausschrieb, sondern nach dem Motto: Einfach-mal-schreiben-und-mal-sehen-wie-es-wird. "Was machen wir mit dem Ende? Ach wenn es soweit ist, wird uns schon was einfallen... Und, oh je, er ist ja ein junger Mann, als muss auch ein wenig Sex rein. Wo packen wir das nur rein..? ahhhh, hier..." So einen Eidnruck macht das Buch auf mich.

Allerdings muss ich auch zur Verteidigung sagen, es ist eines der wenigen Bücher das genug Interesse in mir geweckt hat um es auch zu Ende zu lesen. Also Letztendlich: Geschmackssache.
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x90a117b0) von 5 Sternen 48 Rezensionen
45 von 47 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
HASH(0x8f71c480) von 5 Sternen Quite a lot of fun and very interesting 12. Dezember 2005
Von Ronald H. Clark - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
I generally don't go in for murder mysteries--unless they are set in Oxford of course. This "who done it" is quite unique, since it is written by an Argentinian mathematician and incorporates a bit of mathematical concepts and jargon into the storyline. The story is every bit as challenging as any mystery with which I am familiar. For those conversant with Oxford, you will encounter many familiar locales, and the author has done his homework in scoping out the city and surrounding environs. The fact that the central character is an Argentinian graduate student in mathematics confronted not only with serial murders but with a strange country and its unique culture as well only adds richness to the narrative. The book reads smoothly and quickly (it is 196 moderate-sized pages), and the American edition is beautifully done. A most pleasant excursion into math and murder.
22 von 22 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
HASH(0x8f71c4d4) von 5 Sternen Mathematical Mystery for the non-Mathematician 7. November 2005
Von HenderHouse - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Martinez's THE OXFORD MURDERS brings the reader into two rarefied worlds -- high-level mathematical theory and Oxford University. Don't be intimidated by the mathematical subtext; Martinez makes it quite understandable (said the reviewer who never went beyond geometry). Morever, he's dealing with some of the "sexier" aspects of math: codes, logic, and great mysteries like Fermat's Last Theorem. The mystery itself is creative, although somewhat blandly presented. The characters are interesting enough to make up for the standard narrative format. I would definitely read another Martinez mystery, especially if the setting is Oxford and the focus is math (or "maths," as they say in the UK)

I must admit: I never did figure out the meaning and/or next character in the code shown on the cover and mentioned in the book. Did anyone out there figure it out?
26 von 30 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
HASH(0x8f71c90c) von 5 Sternen Mathematics and Murder 15. Oktober 2005
Von Debbie Lee Wesselmann - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
This quiet murder mystery set in Oxford, England around the time that Andrew Wiles revealed his proof of Fermat's Last Theorem mixes mathematics and smoke-and-mirrors "magic." A young Argentine math student arrives in Oxford and takes a room in the basement of an elderly woman's house. Before long, he and a famous mathematics don, Arthur Seldom, discover her lifeless body sprawled on the sofa. A small mistake by the murderer -- too much force when suffocating her -- shifts the death from perhaps natural to definite homicide. When the don reveals that he received a mysterious note in his cubby that led him to the house and that suggests this is only the first of many murders, the detective work begins, with the narrator and Seldom hashing out ideas about symbols, patterns, Godel's Incompleteness Theorem, the Pythagorean Society, Wittgenstein, and, of course, the solution of the "impossible," Fermat's Last Theorem. The introduction of a magician and his one-handed tricks connects the discussions of math with the truth.

While the ending is somewhat of a let-down, the book itself is entertaining, with its gentle insertion of the philosophy inherent in mathematics. Martinez's characters are not as developed as they could be, thus making it difficult to care about what happens to them, but his flowing style keeps everything moving. Those familiar with Oxford will delight in the setting, which Martinez evokes with frequent visits to the Eagle and Child (a nod to famous Oxford literary figures and minds), the various colleges, the Sheldonian Theatre, and other landmarks.
10 von 10 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
HASH(0x8f71ccd8) von 5 Sternen 4 3/4 stars: a real treat 3. November 2005
Von tregatt - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
For some reason, I found myself comparing Guillermo Martinez's "The Oxford Murders" with Michael Dibdin's "Back to Bologna" -- both books are rather dissimilar in style and content, and really share only one thing in common: that theory (mathematical and philosophical ones in the case of "The Oxford Murders" as opposed to literary and semiotic theory in the case of "Back to Bologna") plays a big part in what goes on in both books, quite often at the expense of action and real crime solving. And I wondered why what irritated me so in "Back to Bologna" (the lack of real clues, suspects and a clear mystery plot) did not irritate me at all in "The Oxford Murders." I came to the conclusion that not only was "The Oxford Murders" more my cup of tea, but also that the author had, at least with this book, taken quite seriously the knowledge that he was writing a mystery novel. The book may lack real suspense and jaw dropping plot twists, but the clues and suspects are all there for the canny reader to "see" and to allow readers who enjoy it, to attempt to try and figure out what's going on along with the unnamed narrator, the young Argentinean mathematics scholar.

The plot is a very simple one: one summer a young Argentinean man arrives at Oxford, where he's received a scholarship to study for a year. The young man's expectations, aside from work, is to enjoy all that Oxford and England can offer him. Certainly the last thing he expects is to become embroiled in the murder investigation of his aged landlady (whom he finds smothered to death one afternoon) along with the world renowned mathematician he has always admired, Arthur Seldon. When another murder is committed and the indications are that it is connected to that of the young man's landlady, and that a whole string of similarly connected murders could follow, the young man and Seldon find themselves assisting the police in this race against time to stop a determined murderer with a yen for mathematics...

This is wonderfully understated but brilliantly absorbing read. The chapters are short but chatty, as Seldon lectures on one mathematical/philosophical theory or the other, but I did found myself totally involved and interested in what Seldon/the author was trying to impart. Kudos to Sonia Soto (I read the English translation) for doing such an excellent job of making this book accessible and a joy to read. What I really liked about this book though, aside from it's wonderfully vivid descriptions of Oxford, was that the clues were really all there. Halfway through the book, I had a suspicion of how things would pan out; and while much of what I suspected came to pass, I felt a little let down, however, that one piece vital information was never fully explained, even at the end. All in all, though, "The Oxford Murders" was a treat of a read, and perfect for those long winter nights, curled up in your favourite chair with that glass of sherry.
8 von 8 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
HASH(0x8f71cdbc) von 5 Sternen More and less than meets the eye 17. Juni 2006
Von Charles Brewer - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
I bought this at 9:30 this morning, and finished it at 2 this afternoon. And I enjoyed it very much. It's not the best written book I have read by some distance, but is ingenious and deceitful in a most engaging manner. It is also one of the few books I have read which really does understand and make use of Wittgenstein's remarks in the Investigations about following rules. Oddly, I felt that Matinez's grasp of the implications of philosophy was stronger than his grasp of maths, which is strange since he holds a doctorate in the latter subject.

Although the characters are rather poorly drawn, I felt that their motivations (and actions) were excellent. I often found that I knew what people would be capabile of doing, but remained puzzled about whether they actually had. Martinez is smart enough to allow some things to be as they seem, but others not to be so.

I also very much enjoyed the puzzle on page 28 (M heart eight), and got great satisfaction out of cracking it. Judging by my son as an audience, it also makes a splendid trick using a whiteboard.

Unlike some of the other reviewers, I found the resolution fully in line with the author's view of Wittgenstein's statements about rule following, and and pleasant and intelligent response to the more simplistic denouments of other, purportedly similar books I've read in the past couple of years.
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