I read a paperback version of The Black Cloud.
Genre: Science fiction
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd.
Originally published: 1957
Pages: 209 (paperback)
Audiobook length: 8 Hours 23 Minutes
Blurb by the publisher:
Astronomers in England and America have made a terrifying discovery: an ominous black cloud the size of Jupiter is travelling straight towards our solar system. If their calculations are correct, the cloud’s path will bring it between the Earth and the Sun, blocking out the Sun’s rays and threatening unimaginable consequences for our planet. With the fate of every living thing on Earth in the balance, world leaders assemble a team of brilliant scientists to figure out a way to stop the cloud. But when they uncover the truth behind its origins, they will be forced to reconsider everything they think they know about the nature of life in the universe . . .
I found The Black Cloud on a recommended table in a Waterstones in London, and was intrigued by the Richard Dawkins quote printed on the cover that said;
“One of the greatest works of science fiction ever written.”
That’s a pretty bold statement! So, let’s see if I agree with Dawkins…
The Black Cloud paints a pretty scary picture of something unknown and feared to become a reality. I loved the fact that Hoyle is an astronomer, and that the actual storyline and happenings of the book actually might be quite realistic according to Dawkins. That made it even more interesting, and scarier at the same time.
This book has a good collection of interesting (and some not so likable) characters, that we briefly get to know. I would have loved to have gotten to know them a little bit more, but I also really appreciated that the book was quite short.
Some of the science in the book did pass over my head a little, but not so much that I lost interest in the story or got bored.
The politics that comes to play in The Black Cloud seem just as relevant today as it was in the times that it was written, and might be even scarier than the idea of the actual black cloud.
I found The Black Cloud to be a quick and interesting read that I really enjoyed. The greatest work of science fiction ever written? Not sure I agree with that, although I will say that Hoyle wrote a story that is very entertaining and thought-provoking.
If you are a fan of science fiction and haven’t read this one yet, I highly recommend you do so. If you’re new to the genre, this book might not be the best place to start.
Click on the Bookdepository link below to get your own copy with free shipping, and let me know what you think of the book!
💛If you buy via my affiliates links, I get a small commission💛