‘I loved it: simple as that. I started reading thinking I’d start with a few chapters and pace it over a week or two, but I found I couldn’t stop. A potent and haunting novel of black holes, solitude and the sublime, it is never less than immensely readable and absorbing.’ – Adam Roberts, winner of the BSFA Award for Best Novel and the John W. Campbell Memorial Award
The Fifth Dimension is set partly in Prague, Czech Republic at the height of the country’s transition toward freedom and democracy, and partly in a remote region of the Argentine Andes. Jacob has left behind his family to take part in a demanding experiment. Succeed, and he comes home with a small fortune.
Martin Vopenka was born in Prague in 1963. He is chairman of the Association of Czech publishers. ‘A celebrated novelist, his work is reminiscent of both Kafka and Kundera.’- Choice.
He trained in nuclear physics, a Jewish writer in Communist Europe, and writes of those years: ‘I’m not a mathematician or a physicist retrained to be a writer, but a writer who made a five-year detour studying maths and physics. For a long time I considered those five years as the most wasted years of my life. In fact until the moment ten years ago when I came across a Czech translation of Kip Thorne’s book Black Holes and Time Warps. Thanks to my earlier studies I could read it with understanding. What’s more: the reading began to inspire me to write the story of The Fifth Dimension.’ Download this whole essay here: Vopenka – Fifth Dimension Overview
What book would you take to a science research station high in the Andes. Jakub, in Martin Vopenka’s The Fifth Dimension, chooses Kip Thorne’s Black Holes & Time Warps. This is a book that showed the way for Christopher Nolan’s SF blockbuster Interstellar, a film spun out of Kip Thorne’s ideas. Vopenka uses story to explore the extremes of nuclear physics and ‘the very nature of our thinking. That our thinking itself shows signs of another dimension.’