Mandatory Credit: Photo by Phil Ball/Shutterstock (356629a) HALE BOPP COMET COMET HALE BOPP

Comet Hale-Bopp was visible with the naked eye as it passed Earth in 1997

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Sarah Perry (Jonathan Cape)

SARAH PERRY is a writer most famous for The Essex Serpent, recently made into a high-end TV show on Apple TV+. Perry, being neither a sci-fi author nor a science writer, has until now given us no cause to include her on these pages. Her new novel, Enlightenment, however… the clue is in the title.

In this gorgeously written, witty and very moving novel, our hero Thomas Hart is a man…

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