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.

Zoonomian reviews The Sky's Dark Labyrinth

I'm pleased to report another review of The Sky's Dark Labyrinth, this time by science journalist Tim Jones.


"Galileo Galilei’s scrape with the Roman Catholic Church is well known.


His suggestion that the Earth spins on its axis and orbits around the Sun was an afront to scripture that got him branded as a heretic and almost burnt at the stake. How he first became aware of the full peril of his situation is less well known: on a rooftop in Rome, eavesdropping whilst taking a pee behind a bush.


Maybe that’s how it happened, maybe not – either way, the Earth won’t stop turning.


But it’s through these touches of imaginative license: sometimes humorous, sometimes tragic, on occasion disturbingly vivid, that Stuart Clark breathes life into the characters of his first novel, The Sky’s Dark Labyrinth. ..."


You can read the whole review here.


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The Sky’s Dark Labyrinth - still science fiction, but in a different sense

A few weeks back I was signing books at Waterstones Stevenage when Dave Scott pop in to say hi.  We had met briefly before at another signing of mine and it was a pleasure to see a familiar face.  He was rushing to finish his holiday packing and bought The Sky's Dark Labyrinth for his vacation reading.  What I did not know was that Dave was taking a punt on me because he was not sure that a novel about astronomy was his kind of thing.

Thankfully, he has decided that it is and wrote a review for GeekPlanetOnline.

He writes, "I am a great fan of science fiction and therefore was initially not sure if The Sky’s Dark Labyrinth was my kind of read. A few pages in, however, I realised that it is still science fiction, but in a different sense. It is fiction of science. Clark has written several other books in the past, some fiction others non-fiction, but all of his work is focused on presenting the world, and his love, of astronomy to the general public. This book is a fresh take on that aspect, and a concept that shows a great deal of promise and is undertaken with an obvious passion. ..."

You can read the whole review here.


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Great discounts on The Sky’s Dark Labyrinth

There are some great deals online at the moment for The Sky’s Dark Labyrinth.  Check out the Book Depository and amazon.co.uk who both have it today for just £8.08 in hardback.  Amazon also have the Kindle ebook edition at just £7.69 – grab it quick in case they suddenly realise that they shouldn’t be selling it yet as the release date isn’t until 14th May!  Please check all prices carefully, these discounts can change rapidly.


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The Sky's Dark Labyrinth Debut Book of the Month at Lovereading.co.uk

It has been an absolute thrill to hear that the website www.lovereading.co.uk has chosen The Sky’s Dark Labyrinth as their May 2011 Debut of the Month.  In their review, they write “A vivid, thrilling portrayal of the lives and work of Kepler and Galileo... It's the first in what will be a fascinating trilogy. Each book bringing to life, through vivid storytelling, key moments in our understanding of the cosmos... Books like this transform the way you access and understand our view of history.”


You can read the full review here.  There is also a link from that page that will allow you to read the first two chapters of the book for free, and compare prices across the major internet book retailers.


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Astronomy, heresy and Galileo's favourite biscuits

Geoff Robbins runs the book blog Cool Science Books.  He was kind enough to review The Sky’s Dark Labyrinth here and has just published an interview with me about the writing of the book.  It was great fun answering Geoff’s questions, especially as we veer off into such territory as how I got to taste Galileo’s favourite biscuits and whether I had made the character of Tycho Brahe a bit too over the top to be believable. Geoff's most interesting question was about what Kepler would have made of modern cosmology.  I was tempted to say he would be utterly thrilled by it, but then I started to really think about it.  In the end, I opted for a completely different take.  Read the full interview here.


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