Complex Dimensions

– by Brenda Murphy

Brenda Murphy‘s latest, “Complex Dimensions,” is the fourth installment of her Rowan House Series (if you haven’t read any of it, you should!). In this installment, although there were characters from two of the previous instalments making appearances, this story was purely about an ex-con trying to make a life of her own after losing everything – her girlfriend, her academia, her future – by signing up as a horse barn manager at the exclusive and elusive Rowan House in Skye, Scotland.

I was intrigued by Murphy’s choice of the title – Complex Dimensions. Complex dimension is a mathematical term used to refer to the dimension of shapes, i.e. the complex manifold or the complex algebraic variety (figures shown below), with real and imaginary points.

Within a complex dimension, you can find strange attractors, which make fractals – infinitely complex patterns that are self-similar across different scales, driven by recursion, they are images of dynamic systems – picture of chaos, nonlinear and unpredictable. So expect the unexpected, so to speak. An example of a strange attractor would be the Lorenz attractor (figure below), with a butterfly shape, which the term butterfly effect is derived from. These two mathematical terms, complex dimensions and strange attractors which Murphy briefly used in one scene to describe the main character’s academic interest and research, imo, symbolised the love story between she and the other MC.

Lorenz2

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Cupid’s Bow

– by Karen F. Williams

 

I was so bloody excited to read Karen Williams‘ latest story, “Cupid’s Bow,” after I saw the words, “maths,” “teacher” and “professor” in the blurb! To me, that was it. I was ready, with me nerd hat on. I was ready to curl up in me seat to read a story I KNEW would be a blast (because I love Williams’ intellectually stimulating writing style and I’m a maths/academia nerd). Needless to say, “Cupid’s Bow,” left me wanting more. So. Much. More. Why? Well, because it was UTTERLY FUN & INTRIGUING to read! From. The. Start. And it ended too quickly for me! Blink of an eye! Literally. There were no more pages for me to swipe! That’s why!

Now, imagine this scenario: Snowed in. A hotel bar. An English teacher/novelist. A maths professor. Writer’s workshop. Lesbian speed-dating. What can come out of this unlikely mixture of sorts, you ask. Well…. whatever theory you may have about how this whole scenario will end up, I can venture to say that you will be wrong.

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