In 2012, Avi Loeb (Israel/United States) was selected by Time magazine as one of the most influential people of the year for his research into outer space. He is Professor of Astronomy at Harvard University, a member of the American Academy of Arts & Science, and manages various astronomy and astrophysics projects, such as Harvard’s Black Hole Initiative, the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics’ Institute for Theory and Computation, and the Breakthrough Prize Foundation’s Science section. His work as a popular scientist covers themes such as the birth of stars, black holes, the future of the universe and extra-terrestrial life. His most recent book, Extraterrestrial: The First Sign of Intelligent Life Beyond Earth (2021) is about the discovery in 2017 of an interstellar object that sparked a serious debate into the possibility that it might be an artefact of alien technology. Avi Loeb, who began the discussion, tells the story in a book that is essential for an understanding of the situation that astronomy as a science finds itself in, one that reflects on humanity’s place in the universe today.