I'm trying to find a book I remember reading, one I'd like to re-read. I saw it probably decades ago. Basic premise is that earth has been stuck in a zone that somehow suppresses intelligence. When it leaves, everyday people go genius. I remember a throw away line early in the book with a scene about a kid who was toying with high mathematics and saying later that day he had reinvented calculus. I remember it causing chaos on Earth -- and I remember them doing some sort of space journey later in the book to test the theory that there was a zone of IQ suppression. I think I remember reading it as a small paperback. There might have been something about some animals becoming sentient as well, unless I'm confusing still another story. I don't remember the title or author. I'm thinking it had a cover possibly with a chimp riding an elephant into a farm or low-urban area or something -- unless my memory is mixing books.

This was long before Vernor Vinge's books.


Classic book. Brain Wave by Poul Anderson. The cover shown on the Goodreads page is exactly as you described.

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    Poul Anderson did book signings at a book store owned by someone my dad knew. I think my copy of this book might be autographed. – Donald.McLean Jun 18 '13 at 13:31

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