John Banville, the author of fifteen previous novels, has been the recipient of the Man Booker Prize, the James Tait Black Memorial Prize, the Guardian Fiction Award, the Franz Kafka Prize and a Lannan Literary Award for Fiction. He lives in Dublin.
When the solution came, it came, as always, through a back door of the mind, hesitating shyly, an announcing angel dazed by the immensity of its journey."
-- from Kepler
In a brilliant illumination of the Renaissance mind, the acclaimed Irish novelist John Banville re-creates the life of Johannes Kepler and his incredible drive to chart the orbits of the planets and the geometry of the universe.
Wars, witchcraft, and disease rage throughout Europe. And for this court mathematician, vexed by domestic strife, appalled by the religious upheavals that have driven him from exile to exile, and vulnerable to the whims of his eccentric patrons, astronomy is a quest for some form of divine order. For all of the mathematical precision of his exploration, though, it is a seemingly elusive quest until he makes one glorious and profoundly human discovery.
"Narrative art...at a positively symphonic level."