REVIEWS OF The Universe Next Door



In the UK



"An exuberant book. A parallel universe where science is actually fun."

The Independent, 14 January 2002


"An enjoyable romp among the abstruse theories of 21st-century science."

The Scotsman, 12 January 2002


"Punchy, conversational and well-stocked with reader-friendly analogies. Read this for a wonderful collection of exceedingly strange ideas."

Scotland on Sunday, 6 January 2002


"The deeper I delved into The Universe Next Door the more I became suffused with a fervour for the subject. Science is great. It stretches you. It expands the mind. It transports you to the frontiers of the unknown. And my, what frontiers these are. Chown has deliberately set out to be thought-provoking and disturbing. And he succeeds superbly."

Professor David Hughes (New Scientist, 23 February 2002)



"The cosmological ideas in this book will ‘knock your socks off’. Our universe could be the outcome of an experiment carried out by a superior intelligence in another universe. Or the unexplained dark matter in the universe might be ‘mirror matter’, and there could be ‘an entire invisible universe occupying the same space as the visible universe’. One physicist cited in the book says: ‘I would be happy if I was completely wrong - but made a lot of people think.’ Chown certainly succeeds at that."

The Guardian, 8 March 2003


"Finest cosmology writer of our day".

Matt Ridley (Author of "Genome")


"Reminds me of Carl Sagan at his best."

Michael White (Author of "Leonardo: The First Scientist")


"The theories described here range from the beguiling to the terrifying to the preposterous, and Marcus Chown handles them all wih admirable clarity. A book that can be enjoyed and understood by the layman."

The Yorkshire Evening Press


"A rising star in the field of popular science."

“The Good Book Guide”



Brian May (Guitarist “Queen”)



In the US…


"For sheer intellectual exhilaration, few books offer more."




"A wonderful book that leaves you with the notion that the universe is likely a lot stranger than even a science fiction writer can imagine."

WICN, New England, June 2000



"Marcus Chown is a latter-day Carl Sagan. Writing with wit and humor, he popularizes complex theories for laypersons untutored in physics, biology, chemistry, and cosmology. Congratulations to Mr. Chown for another stimulating and provocative work."

The [Nashville] Tennessean, 9 June 2002


"If you are anything like me, nothing pleases you more than a source of new scientific ideas. This book is filled with them, yours for the taking. You should hurry, though. I already helped myself to one!"


Charles Sheffield

The Bulletin of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, Fall 2002




"Pick up a copy of Chown’s The Universe Next Door and see what scientists are thinking about time that runs backward, infinitely layered realities, multiple universes, quarks as loops of time, extra dimensions, mini-black holes, mirror matter, creation, the origins of life, the prospects for ETs, and the possibility that we could find alien artifacts in our solar system. Chown has a remarkably smooth, deft style that must appeal to readers of all sorts in much the same way that the late Carl Sagan’s work did while pushing the imaginative envelope as much as Hawking’s A Brief History of Time. This is a readable and enticing exploration of the wildest ideas of legitimate science. Great fun for all."


Analog, Fall 2002




"An exciting book devoted to crazy ideas currently brewing in the minds of theoretical physicists."


Science News, May 2002




"An enjoyable book. Chown’s word images captivate readers."


Astronomy, June 2002



"Colorful but seriously researched."

The Washington Times, 22 December 2002


"Anybody who is attracted to new ideas of where science might be going will find this book of interest."

State Journal-Register [Illinois], 14 April 2002




"Beautifully explains all kinds of crazy ideas that just might be the next major step forward. Tonic for the imagination, highly recommended!"

Gregory Chaitin (IBM Research Division/Author of “Conversations with a Mathematician”)




"In cosmology and physics, reality is far stranger than fiction. Chown gives a fine survey of some of the more remarkable ideas that are currently being explored."


Julian Barbour, theoretical physicist (Author of "The end of Time")