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The Last Theorem

3.16  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,597 Ratings  ·  209 Reviews
The final work from the brightest star in science fiction's galaxy. Arthur C Clarke, who predicted the advent of communication satellites and author of 2001: A Space Odyssey completes a lifetime career in science fiction with a masterwork.
Paperback, 299 pages
Published by HarperCollins Publishers (first published January 1st 2008)
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(showing 1-30 of 2,776)
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Aug 16, 2015 Tatjana rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Zapanjujuća knjiga! Fascinirala me je količina ideja fino utkanih u radnju romana, lepo doziranih i uklopljenih, tako da imate celovitu viziju, a ne nabacane koncepte. Doduše, ima problema u tempu romana, pretpostavljam da je zbog toga došlo do velikog broja nezadovoljnih čitalaca. Takođe, lično, problem mi je bio sa nepoznavanjem i nedostatkom interesovanja za brojne matematičke probleme (ali tu je već problem do mene, a ne do romana).
Sve u svemu, potpuno sam zapanjena količinom kvalitetnog ma
Mar 07, 2010 Raj rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
I'm a big fan of Arthur C. Clarke, but 3001 The Final Odyssey and now this have tested my loyalty. Both were written in the latter years of Sir Arthur's life (The Last Theorem was the last book published before his death) and both had good ideas that were poorly executed.

The EM shockwave of Earth's nuclear tests spread into space and eventually reach a race of mega-beings, called the Grand Galactics who immediately dispatch one of their client races to eliminate this upstart race. Meanwhile, you
Mar 19, 2009 Wayne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 01, 2016 Mohammad rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novels, science
اشتريت النسخة العربية من مكتبة ألف. الرواية بدأها آرثر سي كلارك كاتب الخيال العلمي الكبير، ثم لم يتمكن من اتمامها، فأرسل بها الى الكاتب فريدريك بول ليكملها، فرحب بالفكرة. أسلوب الرواية رشيق يتسم بالحماسة والخفة والشغف بالخيال العلمي. هذه أول رواية أقرأها لآرثر سي كلارك وأول رواية خيال علمي أهتم بقراءتها، لذا فليس عندي اطار مرجعي أقيم على أساسه مدى جودة هذه الرواية. الرواية أعجبتني كثيرا واستمتعت بها من الغلاف الى الغلاف وأعطيتها خمسة نجوم، ولكن بنظرة سريعة على الريفيوز تجد أن أغلب - ان لم يكن كل ...more
Mar 16, 2015 Dan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
In many ways, it's appropriate that this was Arthur C. Clarke's final work. It's sort of a love letter to him and his career, magpieing ideas from his best works, from the all-seeing alien beings to his love of Sri Lanka. There's countless little nods to Clarke's work and its great fun to spot.

The trouble is, this isn't really a very good book. It is essentially the life story of a Sri Lankan boy who is a remarkable mathematician and manages to once and for all conclusively solve Fermat's Theor
Keith Stevenson
Jan 11, 2012 Keith Stevenson rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
From the sublime to the not so. And it really pains me to say that. Arthur C Clarke died last year and it was a great loss indeed. It’s hard to imagine a more famous science fiction author and one who had such a prestigious career. So when ‘the final novel from SF grandmaster Arthur C Clarke’, as the shout line went across the cover of The Last Theorem, came through the letterbox, and I saw that Clarke had co-written it with Frederik Pohl, another significant talent, I though, ‘Wow, this is goin ...more
Jan 02, 2013 Alexis rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book was written by two great, but very old, authors.It shows. Half of the book is Clarke and Pohl,often ignoring the 4th Wall, telling the story of a young mathematician in the manner of two benevolent grandfathers who're trying to impress their grandkids by throwing random mathematical tricks (some of them pretty neat, tbh) and info in the plot.In the other half they're dreaming of a world where the UN, with Sri-Lanka as the vanguard (!!) can bring about world peace, where Clarke's dream ...more
Sean Rourke
I love both these guys. They're unquestionably masters of their craft, and two of the greatest luminaries of science fiction. Having said that, this book is...well...very mediocre. I went on Wikipedia to find out if maybe something was going on during the development of the book, and it turns out that Arthur C Clarke was in the late stages of his life when he started this one. He owed his publisher a book, but hit a point where he felt like he just couldn't generate the ideas anymore. So, he rea ...more
Jan 09, 2009 Elly rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebooks
The book was, especially at the beginning, not at all what I expected. It was mostly a novel about a young man growing up, and not much mathematics, or science fiction in evidence. There is a second, smaller, storyline that is interwoven within this story which is very much sf. But in the end it was a very nice story, and I am happy to have read it.
One thing I missed: the actual 5 page proof of the theorem. It would have been so nice to read that... But given that the actual proof is 150 pages
Dec 28, 2008 Matt rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
From what I have read Frederick Pohl actually wrote this book based on a few notes from a dying Arthur Clarke.

Pohl managed to turn this book into a tribute to Clarke's best known work including, but probably not limited to 2001: A Space Odyssey, Childhood's End, and Fountain's of Paradise.

There is an alien race in this novel called the One-Point-Fives which reminds me of the Daleks from Dr. Who. I'm not sure that Clarke was fan, but I do remember seeing a photo of him posing with a Dalek. Perh
Jan 04, 2016 Iary rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scifi, just-ugh
The Last Theorem... also known as ”Will the aliens EVER reach Earth?”
(view spoiler)
Ben Babcock
Overall, the word I'd use to describe this book is "shallow." Clarke and Pohl, two big names in SF, have managed to take two interesting concepts (Fermat's Last Theorem and alien sterilization of Earth) and turn them into a boring book. It's as if they said one day, "Well, we've succeeded at everything else in literature; now we have to succeed at writing a bad book!"

My major problem with the book is the lack of any consequences, or really, any conflict at all. At points the story threatens to i
Jun 13, 2012 Iulia rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Poate fiindcă am citit-o în limba română, poate fiindcă am văzut de curând 2001: A Space Odyssey pe marele ecran şi mă aşteptam la o poveste cu aceeaşi rezonanţă psiho-intelectuală, sau poate fiindcă trec printr-o fază în care, poate în mod nedrept, nu consider simplitatea ca fiind o valoare – Ultima Teoremă mi s-a părut o carte prea uşoară în raport cu aşteptările mele. Nu mi-a trezit emoţii sau idei pe care nu le-am mai avut; nu a strălucit cu nimic. Personajele sunt prea ideale ca să prindă c ...more
Mar 23, 2012 Prashanth rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf
I respect Mr. Clarke, I really do. And, I like some of his books. Unfortunately, not this one.

The story line follows the travails of one Ranjit, a mathematical genius, from being a kid through his days of glory after solving "Fermat's Last Theorem", and his daughter's (ahem) alien abduction. I remember Mr. Asimov somewhere saying that a story for kids proceeds at breakneck pace, and adult fiction cannot do so. The story here finds the pace somewhere in that category. In summary:
1. Ranjit does so
May 23, 2012 Chris rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Given how highly I've held both authors in regard, I was expecting an incredible read. Instead, I found a boring, insipid story about a South Asian family. I'd like to recommend this to South Asian friends and colleagues, but I cannot. Containing very little "science," the book reads like a regular fiction novel by an aspiring author. Fortunately (I guess...) for Mr. Clarke, one of the postambles (there are 5!) suggested that Mr. Pohl did most of the writing, from Mr. Clarke's notes.

The cover qu
Jul 22, 2014 Gary rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The listener experiences the science of Clarke and the story telling of Pohl which makes for a delightful listen. Also, the listener gets to learn a little bit about number theory and what's all this talk been about Fermat's last equation and why people through out history have gotten hooked on it.

For me the funnest part of the book surrounds the Galactic Overlords and how they are everywhere but really nowhere and we should just call them "Bill" with quotation marks and should not directly conf
Clay Brown
Arthur C. Clarke and Frederick Pohl are two of the Giants of Science Fiction. 2001 A Space Odyssey is one of Mr. Clarke’s works and Gateway by Frederick Pohl is one of my favorite books. I still remember when I was a youngster being blown away about Gateway.

So now these two fine creative men have joined together for the first time. That can be a good thing, yet it can be a bad thing as well, when two writers put heads together. Writers aren’t known for being ‘easy to get along with’, and collabo
Aug 29, 2015 Sean rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction

I really wanted to like this book. Two grandmasters of science fiction writing together. Clarke is one of my favorite author's of all time. I haven't read any of Pohl's solo works.

This book is somewhat interesting. It follows the life of Sri Lankan mathematician who ends up solving Fermat's Last Theorem. The problem is that the book doesn't seem to have any real point. The main character goes through life, some things happen. He gets kidnapped. He gets imprisoned. He solves a math prob
Adam Lee
Mar 17, 2015 Adam Lee rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you have to read yet another sci-fi book by two old white guys, this one at least has the interesting twist that it has a person of color as the protagonist: Ranjit Subramanian, a Sri Lankan mathematics prodigy who discovers Pierre Fermat's long-sought proof of his famous Last Theorem. Ranjit's achievement vaults him into the ranks of global fame, where he becomes entangled with a secretive U.N. agency planning to end war on Earth - though perhaps not quite in time to assuage the alien races ...more
Ovidiu Neatu
A pleasant read but lacks depth.
Jose Gaona
May 05, 2014 Jose Gaona rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ficción
"El último teorema", última novela de Clarke (con la ayuda de Pohl), es un repaso a los intereses e inquietudes que marcaron el periplo literario de uno de los grandes maestros de la ciencia ficcion de la segunda amitad del siglo XX. La construcción del ascensor planeatario, el contacto con civilizaciones extraterrestres y la catarsis que lo anterior provoca como solución a los problemas domésticos (el libro está ambientado en un mundo en que EEUU, China y Europa coexisten en un frágil equilibri ...more
Phil Scovis
The ominous foreshadowing of the alien encounter with humanity is done nicely, but it never delivers the awe and transcendence usually found in Clarke's works.

The story sets up for some insightful commentary on international relations and government, but never really brings it home. I was left wondering whether the fictional "Pax Per Fidem" was the beginning of a new utopia or an orwellian nightmare.

In short, it seemed to be building up to something, and then disappointingly failed to have a po
Jun 16, 2014 Krbo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ovo je dosta kontroverzno po komentarima, napisala dva vrhunska autora, sada preminula, pred kraj svojih života.

Obzirom da sam nedavno "ponovio" "Kraj djetinjstva" mogu reći da mi je jako lijepo sjela.

Imamo tu neobičan lik - Srilankaški matematičar (Clarke po prvi puta uvodi u radnju svoju drugu domovinu) Ranjit je Forrest Gumpovske sudbine, svašta bijelo i crno ga je napalo no izvukao se iz svega, usput riješio najzagonetniji matematički teorem te nekako slučajno spasio i Zemlju.

Opet imamo stra
Day 1:
I began reading this book last night. I checked it out at the library a couple of weeks ago, remembering how much I enjoyed the Rama series when I was in college. I'm already hooked, only 20 or so pages in. Radar . . .
Jan 28, 2015 Claire rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I am going to stop at page 192 so I can fit more amazing literature into this year, perhaps to return next year. I greatly enjoy this, even if it's not exactly what I've studied and lived the past few years... My friends have. (And it's fun to think of Sri Lanka, India and the US all together in an early-21st century context - I have friends from all three of those places! I'm thinking Kadiatu, Arjun, and Janelle as the prototypical representative of each nation-state, though obviously I know ma ...more
Jun 14, 2014 Aaron rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
While this book had many points that were interesting and gripped my imagination and curiosity, there were also several points that seemed like they just didn't matter. I loved all the math and science discussions, and although the alien aspect of the story seemed a little far fetched, it was still fun to hear. The time in the book stretched on much farther than I had anticipated, and much more than I thought necessary. Our main character begins young, and eventually grows old...he gets a family ...more
Jun 27, 2014 Tijana rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I've not read other books from these authors, but initially after reading the abstract of the story it has caught my intention of reading trough whole thing. But.. 200+ pages later, the plot hadn't been reached yet, and they only managed to describe how he came to realization on his proof, reached in just few pages.. The only thing this book never are fillers, and instead of getting the feeling of actually reading sf-book, I was reading about 400 pages long ordinary life of one individual whose ...more
The story itself...

How often are you treated to a novel in which a mathematical proof takes a prominent role? I can't think of any other. As well, I enjoyed the complex character of Ranjit Subramanian, and the accurate Sri Lankan setting of the first half. In the second half, a lot of recognizable Clarke concepts are deftly woven together, and the evolution of humanity itself becomes the theme, but the story itself suffers and the characters really fluff out.

The story of the story...

I wish Arthu
May 11, 2016 Rafik rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Borrows plenty from Clarke's previous work and severely updates those ideas to 21st century ideas and conflicts, which is nice. Most of the humor is forced, but the science is amazingly accurate (save for a few details the authors recognize themselves). The pace is kind of slow at times, and the conclusion was somewhat rushed compared to the extensive build-up.
While it is not the best, it's a pretty decent farewell story by Clarke, who passed shortly after reviewing it. While the ideas were mos
Alessandro Kostis
Ho apprezzato particolarmente le digressioni matematiche che il protagonista si trova via via ad affrontare. Inoltre, il fatto che buona parte del romanzo sia ambientato in Sri Lanka dona al romanzo una cornice geografica originale e interessante.
Sopra le righe, a mio modesto giudizio, anche perché affronta numerosi problemi terribilmente attuali. Se è vero che la buona sci-fi non è quella che predice il futuro, ma quella che pone l'accento su distorsioni contemporanee immaginandone lo sviluppo,
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Sir Arthur C. Clarke 1 19 Nov 14, 2009 10:31PM  
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Arthur C. Clarke was one of the most important and influential figures in 20th century science fiction. He spent the first half of his life in England, where he served in World War Two as a radar operator, before emigrating to Ceylon in 1956. He is best known for the novel and movie 2001: A Space Odyssey, which he co-created with the assistance of Stanley Kubrick.

Clarke was a graduate of King's Co
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