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What the book is about

A toddler captivated by patterns... A little boy filling his slate with numbers, rubbing them out with his elbow and starting again... A teenager solving complex maths problems... A young man matching the best minds in Cambridge…

Following his singular fascination with numbers, the award-winning book brings to children the story of the brilliant mathematician Srinivasa Ramanujan for whom numbers 'made patterns only he could see.'

Writing this book has been a journey of sorts for me and I have tried to capture the essence of that journey in a blog post
 where I share photos of the places related to Ramanujan (in India and England) that I have visited and my thoughts. If you read it, do share your thoughts and comments.

A Sneak-Peek 

I made a sneak-peek video for the book to commemorate Ramanujan's 100th death Anniversary on the 26th April 2020. It was also part of a series of videos that children's authors made for #ThodaReadingCorona, an initiative to bring some fun and hope to children and parents alike through book readings and discussions. Do write in with your comments about the video or if you want to know more about the concepts I discuss in it.

Awards & Recognitions

Srinivasa Ramanujan: Friend of Numbers received the Neev Book Award for emerging readers in 2020.

The book was released in the US in 2023 as Friend of Numbers: The Life of Mathematician Srinivasa Ramanujan. The edition received starred reviews from
Kirkus and School Library Journal.

The book won the
Mathical Book Prize in the US for the Elementary Readers category. You can read more about the prize here

It has found a place in USBBY's 2024 list of Outstanding International Books that represent the best of children’s literature from countries other than the US. The introduction to the list says:

Books have long had the ability to transport us. To spark our imaginations and call us to wonder. But sometimes, a book comes along that grants us the power to reimagine the world and our place within it. In each of the 41 titles on this year’s United States Board on Books for Young People’s (USBBY) Outstanding International Books list, the authors and ­illustrators empower readers to make sense of themselves, make sense of the world at large, and to recognize change is always possible. These titles, selected by a committee passionate about children’s literature, highlight myriad global stories and perspectives. The recommended titles, for readers in preschool through high school, highlight the different ways this ­empowerment can look ...The books on our list reimagine the world as a more equitable, just, happy, and empowering place. With these stories, children can transform their ideas of what they think is ­possible.

The book also featured in the Best Stem Books Awards List for 2024.

Betsy Bird , one of America's most influential children's librarians, puts together year-end lists of her favorite books--31 Days, 31 Lists. In 2023, adding Friend of Numbers to her math books list, she says:

'One of the differences with Friend of Numbers (from other math-related children's books) is the fact that not only does Priya Narayanan have a good grasp on how to tell the story of Srinivasa Ramanujan, but she also isn’t afraid to put math into the text itself... And this book’s back matter is INCREDIBLE! From the Author’s Note to different types of patterns that kids can practice on their own to a Glossary, this book is one of the best math-related titles for kids I’ve seen in a long long time'.

Buy the Book

'Srinivasa Ramanujan: Friend of Numbers' is now available in stores. Click on the link below to buy/ gift a copy to your loved ones.