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Foundation and Empire (Foundation, #2)
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Foundation and Empire (Foundation (Publication Order) #2)

4.17 of 5 stars 4.17  ·  rating details  ·  79,522 ratings  ·  1,151 reviews
The second volume in the Foundation saga. Catastrophic events unfold as predicted by Hari Seldon. The First Galactic Empire is crumbling at its centre; conflict rages at its periphery, where the Traders of the Foundation based on Terminus have become a mighty power.
Paperback, 244 pages
Published 1996 by Harper Collins Voyager (first published 1952)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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blake
Less episodic than the first (Foundation), which was a plus. But it makes all the more apparent Asimov's complete inability to create memorable or sympathetic characters. This means that each of the two halves read like over-long short stories. Part I is a suspense-thriller, solved by a ridiculous and anti-climactic deus ex machina, while Part II telegraphs its twist-ending so far in advance that the last few chapters are simply redundant.

There's no arguing the brilliance of Asimov's ideas -- o...more
Michelle
I am baffled as to why I liked this book and the previous one in the series, at least I am baffled as to how to explain it. This is about as conceptual as it gets. There is no protagonist, or maybe the protagonist is the human race, which might sound kind of original and exciting, but it really isn't. The characters themselves don't really get that much characterization, they are pawns in a game with no players and they're only "on stage" for a brief episode and then the epic sweep of time swats...more
Apatt
Continuing from my review of Foundation (book 1) just a few days ago, this is my take on volume 2 of the iconic original trilogy. The title Foundation and Empire is something of a misnomer as the Galactic Empire has already faded in this book and its function is more like a prop than a player. When I first looked at the titles of the books in this trilogy in my teens I was also a little confused that Second Foundation is actually the third book! Still, at least I didn't make the mistake of readi...more
Elijah Kinch Spector
The laws of history are as absolute as the laws of physics, and if probabilities of error are greater, it is only because history does not deal with as many humans as physics does atoms.
p. 96

Often, the best direction to take an episodic series built around a fantastical or science fictional idea is to use the first, or first few, installments to establish the concept and central mechanic and, after that’s done, to start fucking with it. We need a few Superman stories (although these days a vigne...more
Matt
(Cross-posted to my sci-fi blog, Android Dreamer.)

Having now read three of Isaac Asimov's and been thoroughly disappointed by two of them, I feel comfortable in saying that in my opinion Asimov is a writer of great ideas and worlds with rather poor actual execution. Foundation and Empire is a terribly boring novel. The series as a whole is high concept, with one of the more memorable characters of the medium in Hari Seldon, but I feel as though the first book is really all that is necessary.

Asim...more
Stephen
4.5 stars. Part two of the classic Foundation Trilogy. This is class science fiction at its best and is a really fun series to re-visit every now and then. Highly Recommended!!

Voted to the Locus Poll of All Time Great Science Fiction Novels.
Pamela
I didn't like the first novel in this series, Foundation, at all. It was fragmentary at best, mind-numbingly boring at worst. I am surprised that people say that these are the novels that turned them on to science fiction--if it were me, I would have run screaming in directly the opposite direction.

Please don't take this to mean that I don't like and admire Asimov--I do! I really enjoyed the collection of stories in I, Robot (and yes, okay, I loved the movie too, and a lot of that had to do wit...more
Aditya
Jan 03, 2013 Aditya rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: all Asimov fans
Recommended to Aditya by: Claussius
Shelves: sci-fi
4/1/13
Alright here it is finally. I might end up complaining about a lot of things in this book, but its only because i love Asimov's books a lot and i like them to be nothing short of perfect!

Taking off from where it is left in Foundation, this book can be divided in to two parts - Before Mule and After Mule.

Before Mule - the story is about the 4th Seldon Crisis - the attack of the Empire on the Foundation and the subsequent rise of the Foundation (aka downfall of Empire) as the most dominant r...more
Ariane Nazemi
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Steven Peterson
"Foundation and Empire," the second in a trilogy of classic science fiction novels by Isaac Asimov, is a must read for historians of science fiction. For those who like science fiction itself, this volume is also valuable. Asimov can madden, especially in his early novels, but his imagination is wonderful. His strength is conceptualizing systems (whether empires or cultures) and he often plays with big ideas.

I first read the trilogy while in college, and was fascinated. This triggered a long-la...more
Greg
It's been a long time since I actually finished a book I hated through and through as much as I hated F&E, but I was determined that if I was going to give this a bad review I had to go ahead and read the entire thing to justify the rating in the face of those who feel one has to read an entire novel to have a valid opinion of its quality. Normally when I know after ten pages that I'm going to genuinely dislike a book I don't read much further.

I was hoping this would be better than Foundatio...more
Mike
Nov 30, 2012 Mike rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone
"Foundation and Empire" continues the galactic saga begun in "Foundation". (see previous review) "When in Rome, do as the Romans do", used to be a familiar phrase. In this novel, Asimov starts out having the Empire distrust the seemingly unstoppable growth of the Foundation. Where as the Foundation is at the rim of the galaxy and the Emperor at its heart you'd think that there was room enough for both. But no, it is the growing influence, economic power, and technological advancements of the Fou...more
Onefinemess
Man, I am just not enjoying these as much as I hoped. Honestly, I can’t remember if I liked them the first time through or not, but I do remember that I thought (and still do) that the whole idea of psychohistory is pretty neat.

Unfortunately the execution has been un-exciting so far. Sure exciting things happen, and there was a big reveal at the end of this one AND he pulled a somewhat surprising punch and had the series seemingly switch gears midway (spoiler: the Foundation is defeated!) , whic...more
Joseph
The original Foundation is the story of a galactic dark age; of a mighty interstellar empire crumbling from within and the attempt to stem the tide of barbarism using psycho-history, applying mathematical precision to complex social forces. Most of the conflicts involve the clashing motives of ambitious men (and yes, they're ALL men, it was the 50s after all) and the rolling tide of mass psychology. Foundation is a book that's big on ideas if short on character; it gave us The Encyclopedia Galac...more
Amanda Webb
I'm really enjoying the Foundation Trilogy but I can't help that niggling thing that this second book brings on more than the first. The women in it are portrayed as housewives and even the first (and so far only) woman that makes it as a proper character is constantly admired for her looks. There is an almost hilarious moment when an elder of a planet they visit is shocked and offended that she is allowed to sit and converse with men.



Why did he include a female leading character at all? Well th...more
Alejandro Teruel
Leí las tres principales novelas de esta saga clásica hace casi cuarenta años cuando era estudiante, aprendía estadísticas en la universidad y leía esas vastas arquitecturas para la historia construidas por Arnold Toynbee (A Study of History, escrito entre 1934 y 1961) y en menor grado Edward Gibbons (The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, 1776-1788), Oswald Spengler (La decadencia de Occidente, 1918-1923)y Giambattista Vico (La nueva ciencia, 1725-1740). ¿Cómo podía no llamarme la atención e...more
Olethros
-Evolución de la serie respecto al primer volumen.-

Género. Ciencia-Ficción.

Lo que nos cuenta. El derrumbamiento del Imperio Galáctico previsto por el psicohistoriador Hari Seldon se había producido y su proyecto, la Fundación, había tomado la antorcha del mantenimiento del saber. Tras doscientos años, su proyecto enciclopédico quedó en un segundo plano pasando a ser un foco de civilización que hasta ahora, afrontando diversos desafíos potencialmente catastróficos con éxito, controla una cuarta...more
Olethros
-Evolución de la serie respecto al primer volumen.-

Género. Ciencia-Ficción.

Lo que nos cuenta. El derrumbamiento del Imperio Galáctico previsto por el psicohistoriador Hari Seldon se había producido y su proyecto, la Fundación, había tomado la antorcha del mantenimiento del saber. Tras doscientos años, su proyecto enciclopédico quedó en un segundo plano pasando a ser un foco de civilización que hasta ahora, afrontando diversos desafíos potencialmente catastróficos con éxito, controla una cuarta...more
Scott
This book flows a lot better than the first one. This one only has 2 parts, instead of 5, which makes it so it feels less like reading a series of short stories and more like an actual novel. There is also less abrupt scene changes which makes it easier to follow and less confusing. But, the main story in this one, which is part 2, was really boring. The whole story was built around rising action and suspense but the climax was so dumb. The author was trying to surprise the reader at the end but...more
Sarah
With each Foundation book I finish the more surprised I am at myself for not reading them sooner. They are pretty light reads to be honest. I got through the 386 pages of this one in maybe 7 hours total. And it was as captivating from start to finish as the first. But the scale of his stories are massive, spanning several universes and encompassing multiple facets of the societies contained within those universes. Asimov says volumes with very few words, which goes to show that the success of go...more
Benjamin Newland
Dear Kenny,

After I wrote you about Foundation, and mentioned the pre-destination aspect that was troubling me, you said to keep reading, that the author would deal with it in due course. I’m beginning to see how that happens, and I think I like it.

In Asimov’s story, where the future has been mapped by a genius who is now dead and who has erased his future-predicting discipline from the world (as far as we know, but are there hints…?), are all people subject to a rigid determinism where they live...more
Rus Raul octavian
Even if the first part is a little disappointing because of its unexpected final which suddently introduces an injustified problem inside the imperial society (based only on Seldon's psychohistory; like 'it is thus because Seldon said it'...Isaac Asimov could've done better), in the second part, the author shows his unchained genius by revealing his marvelous narrative potential. He introduces The Mule and The Clown , he depicts their individual personalities - everything to strike in the end o...more
Michael
Mar 17, 2012 Michael rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Science Fiction and Suspese Fiction fans
This book was a little difficult for me to get into, mainly because it takes place more than a hundred years after the events in the previous book of the series ("Foundation"), and so all the characters I'd gotten to know are dead. But I quickly became engrossed as I continued to read and events unfold.

Like the previous book, the passage of time weighs heavy on the story. However, this book adds juicy details such as palace intrigue, wars and rumors of war, a seemingly unstoppable arch-villain,...more
Olethros
-Evolución de la serie respecto al primer volumen.-

Género. Ciencia-Ficción.

Lo que nos cuenta. El derrumbamiento del Imperio Galáctico previsto por el psicohistoriador Hari Seldon se había producido y su proyecto, la Fundación, había tomado la antorcha del mantenimiento del saber. Tras doscientos años, su proyecto enciclopédico quedó en un segundo plano pasando a ser un foco de civilización que hasta ahora, afrontando diversos desafíos potencialmente catastróficos con éxito, controla una cuarta...more
Erika RS
I read the three books of the foundation trilogy in such quick succession that I cannot separate them in my mind. So...

This is a trilogy with grand scope. The great galactic empire is falling, and the great psychohistorian, Hari Seldon, is the only one who knows how to shorten the period of chaos that will engulf the galaxy until a second empire is established. To this end, he establishes two Foundations to serve as the seeds of the new empire. This is their story.

As with much older science fict...more
Annie
I am liking the Foundation series overall so far, but I have trouble keeping up with all of the names. I have to get used to a saga spanning centuries. The second book you can't read without the first, whereas in the 'Dirk Struan' James Clavell novels, you can read in any order and each can be its own self-contained story, only enriched by its preceding and its following books.

When a story spans centuries, such as this one, there must be a central theory or thread that ties them all together [o...more
Sergio
I am reading the Foundation books in order of publication.

People should not expect anything more than two dimensional characters in a space opera; especially if they are reading this book after Foundation #1. The characters are only here to serve the plot, and I am fine with that.

Normally I wouldn't complain about an obvious plot twist, but this is a book with no character development and almost no action. By writing such a cerebral book, one would assume that Asimov was expecting readers to be...more
Al

The Foundation novels of Isaac Asimov are one of the great masterworks of science fiction. Unsurpassed for their unique blend of nonstop action, daring ideas, and extensive world-building, they chronicle the struggle of a courageous group of men and women to preserve humanity’s light against an inexorable tide of darkness and violence.

Led by its founding father, the great psychohistorian Hari Seldon, and taking advantage of its superior science and technology, the Foundation has survived the g

...more
Frank
While it doesn't have the brevity of the first book or the unique feel to it. Foundation And Empire brings the second set of stories in the Foundation series into a single book. It feels a bit longer while not necessarily being so, this is probably due to the fact it is two stories, instead of four. It is a reasonably quick read however.

The first story is not the best in my opinion. While it has one of the best characters, the character in the story is outside of the main Foundation story, and...more
Jared Millet
(2013 Asimov re-read, book 3)

Life and circumstances may have derailed my original intention to re-read tons of Asimov over the summer, but damned if I’m not going to at least get through the Foundation trilogy.

Foundation and Empire does just what it says on the tin, and marks the point in the story where Asimov throws a big old monkey-wrench into the gears of Hari Seldon’s master plan for the future, probably sensing (and rightly so) that predestination can only take you so far before it gets bo...more
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SciFi and Fantasy...: Foundation and Empire 18 23 Oct 10, 2014 02:20AM  
Goodreads Librari...: ISBN 9780553293371 4 29 Oct 04, 2012 05:02PM  
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Isaac Asimov was a Russian-born, American author, a professor of biochemistry, and a highly successful writer, best known for his works of science fiction and for his popular science books.

Professor Asimov is generally considered the most prolific writer of all time, having written or edited more than 500 books and an estimated 90,000 letters and postcards. He has works published in nine of the te...more
More about Isaac Asimov...
Foundation (Foundation, #1) I, Robot (Robot, #0.1) Second Foundation (Foundation, #3) The Foundation Trilogy (Foundation, #1-3) The Caves of Steel (Robot, #1)

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