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Final Arthur C Clarke novel on the way

Last Theorem is last hurrah

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The final novel by legendary sci-fi author Arthur C Clarke is to be published in August.

According to the Independent, Clarke's unfinished book The Last Theorem was completed by fellow scribe Frederik Pohl. Publisher HarperCollins coughed six figures to secure the rights earlier this year.

The book appears to have been a truly collaborative effort, with Clarke asking for Pohl's assistance when he became increasingly ill with post-polio syndrome, and also found himself stricken with writer's block. "Arthur said to me that he woke up one morning and didn't know how to write any of the books he had contracted," Pohl explained. "The stories had just gone out of his head."

Pohl worked from notes and an outline to bring the book to life over a period of two years, saying that "everything in the novel is something he either suggested or wrote or I discussed with him". Clarke was able to review the finished manuscript before his death in March this year.

The last theorem of the title is that of 17th-century maths whiz Pierre de Fermat, but if that's too dry there is the promise of space elevator action too.

The book is available to pre-order now before publication next month. ®

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