Einstein's Shadow: Book summary and reviews of Einstein's Shadow by Seth Fletcher

Einstein's Shadow

A Black Hole, a Band of Astronomers, and the Quest to See the Unseeable

by Seth Fletcher

Einstein's Shadow by Seth Fletcher X
Einstein's Shadow by Seth Fletcher
Buy This Book

About this book

Book Summary

Einstein's Shadow follows a team of elite scientists on their historic mission to take the first picture of a black hole, putting Einstein's theory of relativity to its ultimate test and helping to answer our deepest questions about space, time, the origins of the universe, and the nature of reality.

Photographing a black hole sounds impossible, a contradiction in terms. But Shep Doeleman and a global coalition of scientists are on the cusp of doing just that. 

With exclusive access to the team, journalist Seth Fletcher spent five years following Shep and an extraordinary cast of characters as they assembled the Event Horizon Telescope, a virtual radio observatory the size of the Earth. He witnessed their struggles, setbacks, and breakthroughs, and along the way, he explored the latest thinking on the most profound questions about black holes. Do they represent a limit to our ability to understand reality? Or will they reveal the clues that lead to the long-sought Theory of Everything?

Fletcher transforms astrophysics into something exciting, accessible, and immediate, taking us on an incredible adventure to better understand the complexity of our galaxy, the boundaries of human perception and knowledge, and how the messy human endeavor of science really works.

Weaving a compelling narrative account of human ingenuity with excursions into cutting-edge science, Einstein's Shadow is a tale of great minds on a mission to change the way we understand our universe - and our place in it.  

Read a Sample

Click to the right or left of the sample to turn the page.
(If no book jacket appears in a few seconds, then we don't have an excerpt of this book or your browser is unable to display it)

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review. This is scientific storytelling at its best." - Kirkus

"Engaging ... captivating and informative." - Booklist

"Unlike the best popular science books, this narrative doesn't make the scientific concepts sufficiently clear to the lay reader." - Publishers Weekly

"A thoughtful and riveting ethnography of an ambitious project to map the sacred boundary of our local black hole, at the heart of the Milky Way, drawing attention to the psychological drives that inspire us scientists to quest for the exciting discoveries that await..." - Priyamvada Natarajan, Astrophysicist, Yale University, author of Mapping the Heavens: The Radical Scientific Ideas That Reveal the Cosmos

"Mind-bending and suspenseful, Einstein's Shadow tells a story about the immense black holes that pierce galaxies, and the humans trying to take their picture. Fletcher is there with them every step of the way, capturing the thrill of a wild and beautiful quest." - Jason Fagone, author of The Woman Who Smashed Codes: A True Story of Love, Spies, and the Unlikely Heroine Who Outwitted America's Enemies

"Fletcher has crafted an extraordinary narrative, explaining the most mind-bending physics with impressive clarity and vividly bringing to life a mostly unsung band of characters who are turning the crazy-sounding idea of taking a picture of a black hole into a reality." - Michael D. Lemonick, author of The Perpetual Now and Mirror Earth

The information about Einstein's Shadow shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Author Information

Seth Fletcher

Seth Fletcher is chief features editor at Scientific American and author of Bottled Lightning: Superbatteries, Electric Cars, and the New Lithium Economy. He lives in New York's lower Hudson Valley with his wife and daughter.

More Author Information

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

More Recommendations

Readers Also Browsed . . .

more history, science & current affairs...

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket
    La Belle Sauvage
    by Philip Pullman
    Voted 2017 Best Young Adult Novel by BookBrowse's Subscribers

    I wasn't quite sure what to expect ...
  • Book Jacket: Conviction
    Conviction
    by Denise Mina
    Scottish author Denise Mina's latest novel, Conviction, is a fast-paced thriller narrated by Anna, a...
  • Book Jacket
    Dread Nation
    by Justina Ireland
    The war between the states is over and, instead, a very different battle is being waged for the ...
  • Book Jacket: Costalegre
    Costalegre
    by Courtney Maum
    The year is 1937 and Hitler is gaining stronger sway over Europe. Chief among the Führer's ...

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    Ellie and the Harpmaker
    by Hazel Prior

    A rich, heartwarming and charming debut novel about finding love in unexpected places.
    Reader Reviews

Book Club
Book Jacket
The Overstory
by Richard Powers

"Monumental… A gigantic fable of genuine truths."—Barbara Kingsolver, The New York Times Book Review

About the book
Join the discussion!
Book Club Giveaway!
Win Crudo

Crudo by Olivia Laing

A brilliant, funny, and emphatically raw novel of love on the brink of the apocalypse.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

S A A B In A R

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends the best in contemporary fiction and nonfiction—books that not only engage and entertain but also deepen our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.