Milo Andret is a mathematical genius who grows up in Michigan in the 1950s. In graduate school at Berkeley he works under Hans Borland, then the most famous mathematician in the US. With isolation and effort, he discovers how to harness his remarkable mind. In passages that illuminate the process, Canin shows how Andret uses mental projection to imagine a fourth dimension, staking his future on “the higher dimensions, despite their unseeable complexity”. By the age of 32, he has found a solution to one of math’s greatest problems.
His career soars. His emotional life is starting to fragment, beginning with a love triangle that lasts for decades. Canin follows his trajectory through a second generation, with his son Hans inheriting his mathematical gift and his fearsome flaws. Canin’s seventh novel is that of a masterful writer at his transcendent best.