TED Book: The Mathematics of Love

A smart, snappy guide to romance… On-screen and on the page, Fry has a wry, chatty voice that illuminates age-old questions in brainy yet simple language.
— The Washington Post

TED Book: The Mathematics of Love

The Mathematics of Love: Patterns, Proofs and the Search for the Ultimate Equation

by Hannah Fry
In this must-have for anyone who wants to better understand their love life, mathematician Hannah Fry pulls back the curtain and reveals the hidden patterns—from dating sites to divorce, sex to marriage—behind the rituals of love.

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About the book

TED Book: The Mathematics of Love

Love, like most things in life, is full of patterns. And mathematics is ultimately the study of patterns — from predicting the weather to the fluctuations of the stock market, the movement of planets or the growth of cities. These patterns twist and turn and warp and evolve just as the rituals of love do.

In The Mathematics of Love, Dr. Hannah Fry takes the reader on a fascinating journey through the patterns that define our love lives, tackling some of the most common yet complex questions surrounding love: What’s the chance of finding love? What’s the chance that it will last? How does online dating work, exactly? When should you settle down? How can you avoid divorce? When is it right to compromise? Can game theory help us decide whether or not to call?

From evaluating the best strategies for online dating to defining the nebulous concept of beauty, Fry proves — with great insight, wit and fun — that math is a surprisingly useful tool to negotiate the complicated, often baffling, sometimes infuriating, always interesting, patterns of love.

Thankfully, love—as with most of life—is full of patterns: from the number of sexual partners we have in our lifetime to how we choose who to message on an internet dating website. These patterns twist and turn and warp and evolve just as love does, and are all patterns which mathematics is uniquely placed to describe.

Press and reviews

“A slim but potent volume from TED Books, featuring gorgeous illustrations… Fry combines a humanist’s sensitivity to this universal longing with a scientist’s rigor to shed light, with neither sap nor cynicism, on the complex dynamics of romance and the besotting beauty of math itself.”

— Maria Popova, BrainPickings

iBooks Best Book of the Month

Excerpt and interview in The Guardian: Read

Hannah on BBC News: "The mathematical formula for love"

On Today.com: "Complaining just might be the secret to a happy relationship

In The Daily Mail: "Why silently putting up with your partner's foibles can doom your marriage"

In Independent: "Small fights the secret to marriage"

In Business Insider: "This mathematical principle reveals the best way to get anything you want in life"

About the author

Dr. Hannah Fry is a mathematician at the UCL Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis. In her day job she uses mathematical models to study patterns in human behaviour, from riots and terrorism to trade and shopping.

Alongside her academic position, she is currently a UCL public engagement fellow, taking the joy of maths into theatres, pubs and schools. She also co-presents the BBC Worldwide YouTube channel and regularly appears on TV and radio in the UK.

Hannah lives in London with her husband Phil, who – luckily - came along at exactly 38 per cent. She has several leftover Python codes from her wedding planning, which can be distributed upon request.

TED Book author: Hannah Frye