Last weekend, Liz at A Chair, a Fireplace & a Tea Cozy did a post on the similarities between the covers for An Abundance of Katherines by John Green and the The Attraction Equation by Charlie Eppes who isn't a real person but a character on the TV show NUMB3RS. Notice that both covers include not only a group of people but mathematical thingies around the titles.
I was forwarding a link to Liz's post to a family member when I realized that the similarities between these books are not limited to the covers.
John Green, a real person, wrote a real book called An Abundance of Katherines about a former child prodigy who is working on a theorem relating to those who are dumped versus those who do the dumping with the intention that somehow this theorem will predict relationships. Charlie Eppes, an imaginary former child prodigy, wrote an imaginary book about his own equation that has something to do with attraction among people, which would also have something to do with relationships. I can't say exactly what because I understand very little of what Charlie Eppes says, I only watch the show because the actor who plays him looks like the family member I was e-mailing today. IMHO, though no one else seems to have noticed.
Anyway, I know I recently said that sometimes two books on the same subject come out at the same time. And, of course, a book and a TV show could appear with similar material at the same time. Except that An Abundance of Katherines came out in September, 2006, while the fake Charlie Eppes wrote his fake book last spring and the fake cover appeared on TV screens this fall. So that's not exactly simultaneous.
Here's what I think should happen: the people behind NUMB3RS should say, "Gee, we don't know how this happened. Perhaps Fate has pulled all this together for its own mysterious purposes. For whatever reason, this has happened, and we're going to put John Greene's book cover up at our website so everyone knows about him and he can sell a million more books."
Or--and this may be even better--the real John Green can sue the pretend Charlie Eppes as part of a NUMB3RS episode. It could even be part of a two- or three-part story arc. And John and Charlie can come up with some kind of mathematical thingie that explains how this whole thing happened. It doesn't even have to be a real mathematical thingie because even though the producers of the show say the math is real, nobody who watches the program has a clue what Charlie's talking about, so it really doesn't matter.
Of course, none of this can happen until after the writers' strike is over.