This was a terrific book, so long as the reader has an interest in either math or in modern intellectual history. The only way this book could have been improved is if the author had included some contributions from women mathematicians. They are conspicuous by their absence. I realize that 19th c. Europe was not swimming in female geometres, but it seems inconceivable that they played absolutely *zero* role in the developments chronicled in this book. That said, it was terribly interesting reading the true story of Galois. It would make a great movie, to be sure.