We watched Interstellar, and kept hearing The Fifth Dimension,Martin Vopenka‘s modern Czech classic that we’re bringing out next summer in a bright new translation from Hana Sklenkova.
The book is special in many ways – including the extent to which it enters into dialogue with another book. The main character is lured from his life and family in Prague to spend a year as part of some isolation experiment in the Andes. He is allowed to take one book with him – and chooses Kip Thorne’s 1994 bestseller Black Holes & Time Warps. The novel plays on Thorne’s thought experiment on wormholes, one such wormhole linking Thorne and his wife though they were far apart.
It was curious to sit in a cinema audience recently and to find that dialogue between Vopenka and Kip Thorne carried further inside a movie – Interstellar also having spun out of the realm of Kip Thorne’s ideas.