Tom Keve is the physicist-turned-writer who was nominated for the European Book Prize for his debut publication, Trois explications du monde. Originally self-published and titled Triad: the physicists, the analysts, the kabbalists, it was republished by French publishers Albin Michel in 2010.
An historical novel, it describes events that occurred at the turn of the previous century, with a focus on European scientists and psychoanalysts. It explores the relationship between them, their family roots and any connections to Kabbalah. Featured scientists include Niels Bohr and Wolfgang Pauli, plus psychoanalysts Sándor Ferenczi and Carl Jung.
London-based Mr Keve, a 66-year-old grandfather-of-three, tells People: "I was talking to my son who said it would be good if all the figures I was reading about within the three areas of physics, analytics and Kabbalah could be included in one book.
"It feels great to have my book shortlisted -
I didn't even know the book had been submitted. In general the book has been a big success in France, has sold well and received good reviews."
He says: "The French are cultural snobs. They are very interested in pre-war Central European culture and they are curious about psychoanalysis, so it seemed to resonate with them." Trois explications du monde was declared "book of the summer" on the country's radio network, France Culture.