This book is really a collection of disparate, fascinating, and occasionally tendentious essays written over a long period by the man after whom the world’s most famous fractal is named.

The book is beautifully illustrated throughout, and since it is now quite old, many of the illustrations are beginning to acquire a period charm. It is perhaps a book that will be most appreciated by the (very) intelligent general reader: it is not the best starting point if one actually wants to learn how to construct fractals or perform computations relating to them. However, readers who learn from this book what Mandelbrot is trying to teach, will begin to see many aspects of the world in a new way.