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Maryam's Magic: The Story of Mathematician Maryam Mirzakhani

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From Althea Gibson author Megan Reid and rising star artist Aaliya Jaleel, illustrator of Under My Hijab, comes the first picture book about trailblazing mathematician Maryam Mirzakhani, the first woman to win the world’s most prestigious honor in mathematics. Perfect for fans of Hidden Figures and Mae Among the Stars. As a little girl, Maryam Mirzakhani was spellbound by s From Althea Gibson author Megan Reid and rising star artist Aaliya Jaleel, illustrator of Under My Hijab, comes the first picture book about trailblazing mathematician Maryam Mirzakhani, the first woman to win the world’s most prestigious honor in mathematics. Perfect for fans of Hidden Figures and Mae Among the Stars. As a little girl, Maryam Mirzakhani was spellbound by stories. She loved reading in Tehran’s crowded bookstores, and at home she'd spend hours crafting her own tales on giant rolls of paper. Maryam loved school, especially her classes in reading and writing. But she did not like math. Numbers were nowhere near as interesting as the bold, adventurous characters she found in books. Until Maryam unexpectedly discovered a new genre of storytelling: In geometry, numbers became shapes, each with its own fascinating personality—making every equation a brilliant story waiting to be told. As an adult, Maryam became a professor, inventing new formulas to solve some of math's most complicated puzzles. And she made history by becoming the first woman—and the first Iranian—to win the Fields Medal, mathematics’ highest award. Maryam's Magic is the true story of a girl whose creativity and love of stories helped her—and the world—to see math in a new and inspiring way.


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From Althea Gibson author Megan Reid and rising star artist Aaliya Jaleel, illustrator of Under My Hijab, comes the first picture book about trailblazing mathematician Maryam Mirzakhani, the first woman to win the world’s most prestigious honor in mathematics. Perfect for fans of Hidden Figures and Mae Among the Stars. As a little girl, Maryam Mirzakhani was spellbound by s From Althea Gibson author Megan Reid and rising star artist Aaliya Jaleel, illustrator of Under My Hijab, comes the first picture book about trailblazing mathematician Maryam Mirzakhani, the first woman to win the world’s most prestigious honor in mathematics. Perfect for fans of Hidden Figures and Mae Among the Stars. As a little girl, Maryam Mirzakhani was spellbound by stories. She loved reading in Tehran’s crowded bookstores, and at home she'd spend hours crafting her own tales on giant rolls of paper. Maryam loved school, especially her classes in reading and writing. But she did not like math. Numbers were nowhere near as interesting as the bold, adventurous characters she found in books. Until Maryam unexpectedly discovered a new genre of storytelling: In geometry, numbers became shapes, each with its own fascinating personality—making every equation a brilliant story waiting to be told. As an adult, Maryam became a professor, inventing new formulas to solve some of math's most complicated puzzles. And she made history by becoming the first woman—and the first Iranian—to win the Fields Medal, mathematics’ highest award. Maryam's Magic is the true story of a girl whose creativity and love of stories helped her—and the world—to see math in a new and inspiring way.

30 review for Maryam's Magic: The Story of Mathematician Maryam Mirzakhani

  1. 4 out of 5

    Barbara

    This one was a 3.5 for me. It was great to have this groundbreaker's story told, but I still struggled to understand the connection between stories and geometry, but then again, geometry has always left me feeling rather clueless. Maybe I needed a tutor like her. Strangely, Maryam Mirzakhani, the first woman and first Iranian to win a prestigious mathematics prize, the Fields Medal, didn't like math when she was growing up. Instead, she loved to write, tell, and illustrate stories. But when a te This one was a 3.5 for me. It was great to have this groundbreaker's story told, but I still struggled to understand the connection between stories and geometry, but then again, geometry has always left me feeling rather clueless. Maybe I needed a tutor like her. Strangely, Maryam Mirzakhani, the first woman and first Iranian to win a prestigious mathematics prize, the Fields Medal, didn't like math when she was growing up. Instead, she loved to write, tell, and illustrate stories. But when a teacher introduced her and her fellow students to geometry when she was 12, Maryam was hooked and began seeing the stories and pictures behind the shapes. After winning an international mathematics competition, Maryam decided to devote her life to mathematics. Her theories and discoveries would become central to the work of rocket scientists, meteorologists, and epidemiologists. The final pages celebrate Maryam's accomplishments with a reminder of the challenges she faced in her career. Sadly, she died of breast cancer at 40, leaving readers to marvel at her accomplishments in such a short time and to wonder about what else she might have accomplished. The digital illustrations bring this remarkable woman and her imagination to life in the book's pages. Readers will want to read the Author's Note about Megan Reid's own mathematical experiences as well as making note of the list of important dates and places to learn more about Maryam. The end papers add to the book's appeal since they feature geometric drawings and formulas and offer some insight into how Maryam might have seen the world. Readers who love stories about strong women, unseen heroes or hidden figures in history will enjoy this book. I had never heard of her before reading it, and of course, now I want to know more.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Ben Truong

    Maryam's Magic: The Story of Mathematician Maryam Mirzakhani is a children's picture book written by Megan Reid and illustrated by Aaliya Jaleel. It centers on the achievements of mathematician Maryam Mirzakhani – first woman and first Iranian to win the Fields Medal, the most important award in the field of mathematics. Maryam Mirzakhani was an Iranian mathematician and a professor of mathematics at Stanford University. Her research topics included Teichmüller theory, hyperbolic geometry, ergodi Maryam's Magic: The Story of Mathematician Maryam Mirzakhani is a children's picture book written by Megan Reid and illustrated by Aaliya Jaleel. It centers on the achievements of mathematician Maryam Mirzakhani – first woman and first Iranian to win the Fields Medal, the most important award in the field of mathematics. Maryam Mirzakhani was an Iranian mathematician and a professor of mathematics at Stanford University. Her research topics included Teichmüller theory, hyperbolic geometry, ergodic theory, and symplectic geometry. Reid's text is rather simplistic, straightforward, and informative. Reid delves into Maryam’s life, describing her studies and interests in high school and college in Iran, her pursuit of a graduate degree at Harvard University, her winning the Fields Medal in 2014, and her death in 2017, at the age of 40. Backmatter includes an author's note, a timeline and further readings. Jaleel’s soft cartoons pair well with Reid's words, reinforcing that Maryam was not just a math genius, but someone who loved books and used stories to solve tough problems. The premise of the book is rather straightforward. As a young girl, Maryam was a storyteller and an avid reader – her favorite street was filled with bookstores. She was not, however, a fan of math until she discovered geometry, which made her feel like every number held a story. It was because of geometry, which would lead Maryam to win the Fields Medal. All in all, Maryam's Magic: The Story of Mathematician Maryam Mirzakhani is wonderful book highlighting an important figure and demonstrates that one can excel in more than one field at a time.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Amy

    As a person who has really struggled with mathematics my whole life, I found this book really encouraging and beautiful. Maryam loved reading and writing stories and didn't like math...until she found a way to use what she loved to helped her understand what she was struggling with. The idea of using story and art to help understand something so logical as math really spoke to me and made me consider as an educator how we could better engage children by using their strengths to help them in thei As a person who has really struggled with mathematics my whole life, I found this book really encouraging and beautiful. Maryam loved reading and writing stories and didn't like math...until she found a way to use what she loved to helped her understand what she was struggling with. The idea of using story and art to help understand something so logical as math really spoke to me and made me consider as an educator how we could better engage children by using their strengths to help them in their weaknesses. I found Maryam a fascinating individual with truly amazing talents and was so sad to read at the end that she had just passed away a few years ago at such a young age. She has become a new inspiration!

  4. 5 out of 5

    Courtney Evans

    In 2014, Maryam Mirzakhani became the first woman in the world to win the Fields Medal, widely considered to be the Nobel Prize of mathematics. She was also the first Iranian to receive the award. The book has great pictures that inspire feelings of wonder. The text is very wordy and better suited for older children who can understand the words and the context of Maryam's story. I would say that the connection between storytelling and mathematics was not made clear through the storytelling in thi In 2014, Maryam Mirzakhani became the first woman in the world to win the Fields Medal, widely considered to be the Nobel Prize of mathematics. She was also the first Iranian to receive the award. The book has great pictures that inspire feelings of wonder. The text is very wordy and better suited for older children who can understand the words and the context of Maryam's story. I would say that the connection between storytelling and mathematics was not made clear through the storytelling in this book and could have been improved. Overall, this is a great story about women in science and a good reminder of the amazing contributions that immigrants make to the United States, as well, since she moved to the United States in 1999.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Ellon

    That was fantastic! I love picture book biographies that teach me about people I never knew about before. I like how this one is a good balance of text and illustration (many picture book biographies are too text heavy in my opinion). I also like how this showed Maryam disliking math as a child but then becoming this amazing mathematician. It shows how we can look at things a new way if they are frustrating us. I love the author's note at the end and how Reid talks about how we aren't just one t That was fantastic! I love picture book biographies that teach me about people I never knew about before. I like how this one is a good balance of text and illustration (many picture book biographies are too text heavy in my opinion). I also like how this showed Maryam disliking math as a child but then becoming this amazing mathematician. It shows how we can look at things a new way if they are frustrating us. I love the author's note at the end and how Reid talks about how we aren't just one thing while relating to Maryam's love of both math, drawing, and storytelling. A great book that I can't wait to order for my school library!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Brittany Baker

    Maryam Mirzakhani's life story is incredible and inspiring. While she disliked math as a child, as a young adult she learns to love geometry and goes on to be the first woman to win the Field Medal, the highest international prize in mathematics. This lively picture book shows math as it is rarely seen in classroom lessons: creative, alive and deeply meaningful. Maryam Mirzakhani's life story is incredible and inspiring. While she disliked math as a child, as a young adult she learns to love geometry and goes on to be the first woman to win the Field Medal, the highest international prize in mathematics. This lively picture book shows math as it is rarely seen in classroom lessons: creative, alive and deeply meaningful.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Bozhena Levine

    Such a wonderful story! A beautiful tribute to an amazing woman. Maryam Mirzakhani is the only woman to win a Fields Medal — the highest honor in mathematics. Can’t wait to share this amazing book with my English Language Learners who would see themselves represented on its pages.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Annamarie Carlson (she, her)

    In this fascinating picture book biography, learn about the life of amazing storyteller and mathematician Maryam Mirzakhani, the first woman (and the first Iranian) to win the Fields Medal, the highest mathematics award.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

    Another amazing woman that people need to know about!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Bookish

    Inspiring biography that will connect for children the link between creativity and mathematics.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Ann Williams

    The story of mathematician Maryam Mirzakhani, the first woman and the first Iranian to win the prestigious Fields Medal. An important read, especially for those who love math.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Edward Sullivan

    An introduction to the mathematical genius who became the first woman and first Iranian to receive the field's most prestigious award. An introduction to the mathematical genius who became the first woman and first Iranian to receive the field's most prestigious award.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Ms Threlkeld

    Maryam Mirzakhani is known for being a brilliant mathematician, but she was also an artist and a storyteller, both of which helped her approach mathematical concepts in unexpected and innovative ways. Told chronologically, this picture book biography follows Mirzakhani from her elementary days, when she had no interest in math, to high school, where she was one of the first Iranian girls to compete in the International Mathematical Olympiad, to being the first woman to receive the Fields Medal. Maryam Mirzakhani is known for being a brilliant mathematician, but she was also an artist and a storyteller, both of which helped her approach mathematical concepts in unexpected and innovative ways. Told chronologically, this picture book biography follows Mirzakhani from her elementary days, when she had no interest in math, to high school, where she was one of the first Iranian girls to compete in the International Mathematical Olympiad, to being the first woman to receive the Fields Medal. Sadly, Maryam passed away after battling breast cancer for three years. Who knows what more she could have accomplished if given the time? This biography will inspire many students (and adults), especially those who struggle with math. Back matter includes an author's' note and important dates. The illustrations were done by an #ownvoices artist.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Margaret

  15. 5 out of 5

    Ellen

  16. 5 out of 5

    Kelsey

  17. 4 out of 5

    Stacey

  18. 5 out of 5

    Cassidy

  19. 4 out of 5

    Caralen

  20. 4 out of 5

    Miss Melissa

  21. 5 out of 5

    Annie

  22. 4 out of 5

    Patricia (Punky Bookster)

  23. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

  24. 5 out of 5

    Alexx Conrad

  25. 5 out of 5

    Brandon Khan

  26. 5 out of 5

    Christina

  27. 4 out of 5

    Angela

  28. 4 out of 5

    Monica

  29. 4 out of 5

    Julie Kirchner

  30. 5 out of 5

    E.VanceStewart

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