Beyond Coincidence

This book’s subtitle is “amazing stories of coincidence and the mystery and mathematics behind them,” and the stories live up to it. The author’s take on a variety of coincidental things, from magic and religion to lost poetry books and particle physics. There’s the forest ranger who was struck by lightning seven different times, lives that imitate art, husbands and wives who have head-on collisions and kill each other, the correspondences and repercussions of playing Pink Floyd while watching the Wizard of Oz, and the “puns of destiny” of subatomic particles. These stranger-than-fiction anecdotes are knit together by sidebars explaining what may or may not be causing things. While we hate to admit that things are random, chance, luck and the “laws” that govern them operate at a much stranger level than we think.