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Omnivore (Of Man and Manta, #1)
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Omnivore (Of Man and Manta #1)

3.45 of 5 stars 3.45  ·  rating details  ·  914 ratings  ·  23 reviews
Three scientists came to the mysterious planet Nacre to discover, to explore, to record. Utterly defenseless, they trekked through the grotesque jungle of multiform mushrooms and dense spore-clouds, hoping to unlock the secret of this strange world. The stunning climax of their mission was just the beginning of a complex drama in which their survival--and return to earth-c ...more
Paperback, 156 pages
Published May 11th 2004 by Mundania Press LLC (first published 1968)
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Omnivore is a better science fiction novel than I expected. I first tried to read it many years ago as a teenager but I never got past about page 25. It is a bit slow to start out, and it may have frustrated me back then that the plot is stitched together through a series of flashbacks and episodic scenes. It also reads like a mystery novel without everything fitting together until the very end. However, with more patience and a greater appreciation for more complicated fiction now, I enjoyed bo ...more
Owein Herrmann
I read this very long ago... probably sometime in the 70's or possibly 80's. It had this cover: (see, and I have to admit, I read it because there was a picture of a woman in a bra on the cover. Locating the portion of the book where she took off her shirt was anticlimactic, but the premise of the book always interested thereafter, and I hope to read it again sometime.
Omnivore is a re-release of the book of the same name first published in the late 1960's. It is the first book of a trilogy, Orn and OX being the second and third book of this series. Omnivore is the story uncovered by a futuristic superhuman government investigator named Subble while investigating the disappearance and murder of eighteen space explorers on the exotic planet of Nacre. As the investigator's mind is wiped completely clean after each mission to eliminate any bias, Subble must uncov ...more
Joey Brockert
This is one of the strangest and best stories I have read. It combines a bit of science fiction, ecology and social dynamics. The heroes travel to another planet, Nacre, that is full of fungus, you know, mushrooms and molds. Now they are back on Earth. Subble is inquiring about something that happened on Nacre with Veg, Aquilon and Calvin.
Subble is a trained agent, but to us and them he is a superman.
Veg is a vegetarian who logs for a living.
Aquilon is an .
Calvin is pure carnivore, there is
In 1968, when Omnivore was first published, Piers Anthony was a celebrated science fiction writer. His 1967 novel, Chthon, was nominated for the Hugo for Best Novel, as was his 1969 novel, Macroscope. Neither won (Chthon lost to Zelazny’s Lord of Light and Macroscope lost to LeGuin’s masterpiece The Left Hand of Darkness- which also beat out Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse 5. Novels from 1968 that were nominated for the Hugo included Delany’s Nova, Lafferty’s Past Master, and the winner, Brunner’s Sta ...more
Interesting to think this was written 40 years ago. Many of the issues foretold are happening right now. I am not sure I "got" many of the references back when I read it in High School, however I do remember really like the book.

Now on to the next two...

Actually, after reading this and Macroscope, I am sorry to know that the "Xanth" series soured me for this author. I may have to go back and dig up any non-xanth stuff as he is really quite good when not spewing the pulpy stuff.

IMHO of course
Bri Fidelity
I re-read this a couple of years ago and it's actually still Quite Good.

Not Good Good, mind you - just Quite Good. But it is Piers Anthony, and as such it was rather a relief to get to the finish and not want to scrub myself clean in a bathtub filled with Listerine. (I should've left it there, but then, optimistically, I started on the sequel, too.)
Andrew Smith
Ever question who we are, and how we do things? A small team comes to a planet where the rules apply in a much different manner. The third kingdom, (fungi) is alive and well on another planet where the rules of life are much more defined. Join the group as they realize a lot about themselves and their world as they explore this strange new planet.
I read it a long time ago and I don't remember much, but that cover still haunts me so I'm going to say it made a pretty strong impression!
Leanna Aker
I love sci fi that has ecology as a main theme. This was my first Piers Anthony book, and I will definitely read more. This wasn't too dense, and the story was interesting and perfectly nerdy for me.
Ellis L.
A good read. Gotta watch out for them mushrooms! Classic science fiction that takes a concept and sees it through to its logical conclusion.
This was an interesting combination of story, world building, and science. Looking forward to the 2nd and 3rd books.
Cristy Weldon
Interesting play on what constitutes sapiens.
Grade B. Book O1.
Young adult 10-15
Closer to science fantasy than science fiction. Some fun ideas and a quick read. The frame story was distracting--the story structure drew too much attention to itself. Thankfully, the story was short and moved fairly quickly, so the constant switching between the frame story and the events on Nacre wasn't as disruptive as it might have been in a longer or slower-paced story, but at times it felt like a cheap way to create suspense.

Omnivore is the first of a trilogy. It is _definitely_ a product
Second time reading this book. Was a lot different from what I remembered. Was a little hard to follow as the story is told from 4 or 5 different view points and big gaps between the narrative. I learned more about fungus and mushrooms from this book that I ever thought that I would need to know.

Because it is an "old" book (pub. 1968) the "futuristic" science is funny. Still thinking in terms of tube televisions, cameras with film needing developing chemicals, no distance communication, other th
May 25, 2010 Julie rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: hardcore sci-fi fans
Recommended to Julie by: had read a lot of Piers Anthony
Shelves: 2010, science-fiction
Written in 1968, this book does show its age in the rather sexist tone of the book (the one female character seems to take her shirt off an awful lot - for just about any reason) but Piers Anthony came up with an interesting scientific quandary and wrote about it in an understandable way. I might pick up the others in this series at some point, if I can find them at the library.

(I've had this first book in a box in the basement for at least 15 years, so I guess it's about time I got around to it
I didn't read any more in the series (Ox, Orn) after this because it fell sort of flat when compared with other sci-fi I've enjoyed. I liked the overall ideas and some scenes are still vivid because they portrayed such unusual and dreamlike ideas/places but the storytelling was not that great. Definitely a cool ending and one to think about.
Jim Razinha
Jeez...a book this short shouldn't be so agonizing to get through. I can see why I gave up 40 years ago. While there is science and imagination, there is Anthony's annoying style. It didn't get interesting until 2/3 through.

I'm going to try Orn, but I might not make it to OX.
Sep 13, 2012 Devin rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: have
Alright. By itself. Probably less than average? Still made me interested in the character development in the following two books.
Jeremiah Johnson
Quick and easy read. Some of it was fun and interesting, some was boring and pointless.
Not as good as Orn.
Loisa added it
May 21, 2015
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Though he spent the first four years of his life in England, Piers never returned to live in his country of birth after moving to Spain and immigrated to America at age six. After graduating with a B.A. from Goddard College, he married one of his fellow students and and spent fifteen years in an assortment of professions before he began writing fiction full-time.

Piers is a self-proclaimed environm
More about Piers Anthony...

Other Books in the Series

Of Man and Manta (3 books)
  • Orn (Of Man and Manta, #2)
  • OX (Of Man and Manta, #3)
On a Pale Horse (Incarnations of Immortality, #1) A Spell for Chameleon (Xanth, #1) Castle Roogna (Xanth, #3) Bearing An Hourglass (Incarnations of Immortality, #2) The Source of Magic (Xanth, #2)

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