"Bring just a particle of creativity to your daily life and you will see how the world will change and it will be full of new colors and give you novel possibilities that you had never imagined."

In the Town of Geniuses, everyone hears in his/her own language, timelessness allows people from any century to meet and converse, and there are guides to point you to your own hidden genius within. The book begins when the narrator, Sophie is enveloped in a strange fog that carries her to a fortune teller who introduces her to the ideas she will be grappling with during a mystical study tour of the fabulous Town. Sophie will talk with some of the world’s most remarkable people and learn about many more—geniuses from every age, religion, and discipline. They include such diverse characters as Amadeus Mozart, Emily Dickinson, Albert Einstein, Salvador Dali, and Napoleon Bonaparte. Notions of what creates genius are explored with teachers and fellow students. Sophie gradually realizes that genius can occur in bizarre forms: Agatha Christie almost never spoke as a child; and despite his evil deeds, Adolf Hitler was said to have a genius level IQ. She soon begins seeing the potential for genius in herself—her natural creativity combined with determination.

As they enjoy the story, readers can access direct online links such as a speech by Winston Churchill or an aria by Pavarotti. There are color pictures, called “Genius Cards,” that accompany the text. Thus author Valentina Knurova displays her creative flair in having devised this mixed media experience for her audience. An associate professor in Russia and a practicing psychologist highly fluent in English, Knurova presents her thesis: We can all be geniuses in some aspect of life. Knurova has chosen to make Finding Yourself in the Town of Geniuses not only thought-provoking, but amusing and easily accessible, even to those of us who are not in the genius category.

RECOMMENDED by the US Review

Return to USR Home