The Fifth Dimension

By Martin Vopenka

Category: Crime, Fiction, SciFi, Translation

Formats available: Paperback, Ebook

Publication date: 09/09/15

ISBN-13: 9781909954083

ISBN-10: 190995408X

Striking world fiction from the Czech Republic.

To support his family, a man submits himself to a solo science experiment in the High Andes. A cosmic adventure story of big ideas and murder. Your business is dead. It seems like a deal: leave your family behind in Prague for a year, isolate yourself in a research station in the Andes, and come home with a fortune. With a treatise on black holes for company, Jakob settles in at altitude. The air is thin. Strangers pass by on dangerous pilgrimage while his young wife and kids take life in his mind. In mountain starkness, the big questions take shape: like what happens to love inside a black hole?

Part murder mystery, part science fiction, part mystical quest, part mountain adventure, always remarkable.


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

Ably translated from the original Czech by Hana Sklenkova, The Fifth Dimension is a weighty and at times challenging read, its themes nothing less than life, death, the universe and love. It is absorbing, haunting and intellectually engaging throughout, with a gut-punch denouement.

- James Lovegrove, The Financial Times

Martin Vopenka

The Jewish-Czech author Martin Vopěnka is one of the leading voices in world literature, ‘reminiscent of both Kafka and Kundera’ – Choice. Martin’s 1989 debut Kameny z hor (Rocks from the Mountains) recorded memories and emotions from a journey across the Romanian Carpathians. His novels and travel writing since have continued to deliver a deep and intense exploration of our modern world. In 2016 his Nová Planeta (New Planet) won the country’s premier Golden Ribbon Award. Martin heads the Association of Czech Booksellers and Publishers and owns Práh publishing house.

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