The Sky's Dark Labyrinth Blog



At the dawn of the seventeenth century, the Sun revolved around the Earth according to God’s plan and as set down in the Bible. Yet some men knew that the Heavens did not move as they should and began to believe exactly the opposite – a heresy punishable by being burned alive.

The Sky’s Dark Labyrinth is the first in a trilogy of novels that dramatically bring to life key moments in our understanding of the cosmos – when our view of the Universe changed forever.


I'll be collecting all posts here that are relevant to The Sky's Dark Labyrinth.  Published during the course of 2011-2012, volume I, The Sky's Dark Labyrinth, presents the stories of Johannes Kepler and Galileo Galilei.


German Lutheran Johannes Kepler is convinced that he has been given a vision by God when he becomes the first man to distill into mathematical laws how stars and planets move through the heavens.  Galileo Galilei, an Italian Catholic, will try to claim Kepler’s success for his own Church, but he finds himself enmeshed in a web of intrigue originating from within the Vatican itself.  Both men become trapped by human ignorance and irrational terror to the peril of their lives and those of their families in one of the darkest, yet also one of the most enlightening, periods of European history.


Volume II, The Sensorium of God, features Isaac Newton and Edmond Halley.  Volume III, The Day Without Yesterday, recounts the story of Albert Einstein, Edwin Hubble and George Lemaitre.


Confirmed publication dates so far are April in UK, June in Australia, September in Canada.  Forthcoming publications dates will be announced for South Korea, Japan and Greece soon.  I'll be talking about these books at various literary festivals and other venues across the UK this year.  Stay tuned for further announcements.  The book is published in the UK and Australia by Polygon Books and in Canada by McArthur Books.


To download a four page brochure about the trilogy, click here.


To contact the book's UK publicist, Jan Rutherford, click here.

To contact the book's Canadian publicist, Devon Pool, click here.

New Scientist: The life and loves of Isaac Newton

CultureLab editor Kat Austin reviewed The Sensorium of God for New Scientist and concluded, “...Clark does a sterling job of covering the tricky period when scientists were the superstars of society.”

Read the full review here.

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We Love This Book reviews The Sensorium of God

Sally Hughes writes on the We Love This Book website, “The best historical fiction goes beyond dates and events, giving historical figures emotions, achievements and failings. This is very much the case here, where petty squabbles sit beside philosophical debate in a rounded picture of great men and ideas."


Read the full review here.

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Upcoming Festival Appearances

I have a number of speaking engagements coming up that I'm particularly excited about. I very much hope to see some of you at them:

Bath Literature Festival
Stuart Clark and Astronomy
Monday 05 Mar, 8:00pm - 9:00pm

They have advertised:
Stuart Clark, the well-known astronomer and newly appointed astronomy consultant for New Scientist launches his new novel about Newton and Halley, The Sensorium of God. He talks beautifully about the skies, the seventeenth century, and possible future discoveries in 'the heavens'.


Book tickets here

Cambridge Science Festival
What can we learn from the early astronomers?
Thursday 15 March 6:00pm - 7:00pm

They invite you to:
Join Dr Stuart Clark to explore how from Kepler to Newton to Einstein, the greatest breakthroughs in our understanding of the Universe came by studying motion in the Universe. Once again, astronomers are seeing movements in the Universe they cannot explain. Is the next big breakthrough imminent?


Book tickets here.

Edinburgh Science Festival
The Sky's Dark Labyrinth
Tuesday 3rd April 8:00pm - 9:30pm

They tantalise with:
It's the mid-17th century. No one understands why the planets move as Johannes Kepler so elegantly described almost a century earlier. Edmond Halley, adventurer, astronomer and ladies' man, asks reclusive alchemist and fearsome mathematician Isaac Newton for help with solving the problem. From this simple act, the lives of both men are plunged into crisis. Join author Stuart Clark as he weaves a fictionalised tale of the time when science was rife with sex, lies and spies!


Book tickets here.

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Little Atoms Interview

I met up with Neil Denny of Little Atoms to record an interview. As always it was a highly pleasant experience. You can listen to the result here.  You can hear my previous appearances on the show here.

Also congratulations to Neil, who has just been awarded a Winston Churchill Fellowship to spend a month travelling the US to interview more scientists for the show. I look forward to hearing them.

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30% Discounts for Astrofest Book signing

It will give me great pleasure to  talk at Astrofest this coming Friday, 10th Feb, at 10:35am.  The organisers of the conference have asked me to explain about the Sun's role in climate change on the Earth and other planets.

"It is one of the most contentious subjects in science: what is the Sun's role in climate change on Earth? Thanks to the sudden drop in sunspot numbers since 2008, we now have a way of investigating this vexing question - and solutions are being glimpsed. Also, if we look to the other planets of the Solar System, are we seeing the first hints of climate change on other worlds?"

I will also be signing copies of The Sun Kings, and The Sky's Dark Labyrinth. There will also be advance copies of The Sensorium of God, the 2nd volume in The Sky's Dark Labyrinth trilogy available on the day. My book signings will take place at the Astronomy Now stand at 11:10am on Friday, and again at the same time, same place on Saturday 11th.  See you there!

The best news is that by ordering in advance from Astrofest, you can save 30% on the price of the books. Details of this great offer here.

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