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The Bicentennial Man and Other Stories
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The Bicentennial Man and Other Stories

4.0 of 5 stars 4.00  ·  rating details  ·  6,770 ratings  ·  128 reviews
Cover Illustration: Don Dixon
Mass Market Paperback, 224 pages
Published July 12th 1981 by Ballantine (first published 1976)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Karyshma Khan
"The Three Laws of Robotics:
1. A robot may not injure may not injure a human being, or through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.
2. A robot must obey the orders given it by human beings except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.
3. A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Law." (Asimov 491).

Robots are made for the purpose of serving humans and following their orders. From the start, Andrew Martin was
...more
Rowan MacBean
Prior to reading this book, I'd only ever read one Asimov work. It was the short story version of Nightfall and I very much enjoyed it, but I still didn't consider myself an Asimov fan because I knew him as "the robot/space-opera guy" and I've never particularly enjoyed robots or space-opera sci-fi.

As it turns out, it seems I only don't particularly enjoy robots and space-opera sci-fi when it's not written by Asimov. This book contains twelve pieces (eleven short stories and a poem) and there wa
...more
Claire Gilligan
Isaac Asimov is now my favorite author, period. I would say I devoured this book, but that implies that I failed to give each short story the post-reading consideration it deserved, which is entirely untrue.

Every sing story was of such enormous quality--writing style, characterization, plot. I simply do not have the vocabulary to convey how well-crafted and enjoyable every story was.

Asimov's introductions, giving each story its context, were the icing on the cake. So, so good! Immediately search
...more
fatemeh kashefi
The Story is about LOVE, You can't believe how can Love & feelings change the lives even the life of a robot,
I read this book when I was at high school but sometime ago, I saw the movie of this story which Robbin Williams played the character of that robot(I forgot the name) & I was really impressed.
I recommend you to read the book & see the movie, You'll enjoy it for sure.


Nicolas
This was the first of Isaac Asimov's writings that I have read. I liked it. As with any collection like this there were some I liked (Waterclap) and some I didn't (Stranger in Paradise). The title story, Bicentennial Man, was definitely the stand-out. This was a very enjoyable collection and has made me curious to read more Asimov.
Sam Whitehouse
I'm no huge fan of Assimov, though i know he's a legendary, brilliant science fiction writer. I watched the movie Bicentennial Man with Robin Williams and was curious as to what the book would be like. It's short, and i'm not a fan of short stories, but Assimov's writing is rich and clean and he's clearly a master of sci-fi. The length of the story didn't hinder the character development, and although there was never what could be called pace to the story, it was entertaining and absorbing enoug ...more
Olethros
-Ejemplo general de temáticas y estilos del prolífico autor en su obra corta.-

Género. Relatos.

Lo que nos cuenta. Recopilación de doce relatos de Ciencia-Ficción del autor (uno de ellos un poema, en realidad) escritos entre 1966 y 1976, editados previamente en distintos medios, que en esta edición van acompañados de anécdotas y eventos relacionados con el autor y que rodearon o su concepción, o su escritura o su publicación, que tratan temas tan variados como la búsqueda de formas para poder come
...more
Fiver
Half-rate Hollywood reproductions aside, this short story is one of the staples of great science fiction... that simply had to be written, sooner or later.

The Bicentennial Man is a very simple, almost droll story: in the near future, a robot finds itself instilled with the urge to become human, and lives through 200 years of slight modifications to himself while following this goal.

I've always said that good science fiction uses the unusual situations to comment on the human condition, and I cou
...more
Pvw
A typical one-idea novel.

Andrew the household robot discovers his creativity in crafting woodwork and making jewelry. From then on, he strives to become more and more human, both by upgrading his positronic brain and fighting legal battles to obtain human-like rights. The family that employed him at first keeps supporting Andrew in his desire (even though he survives all of them, because he himself becomes 200 years old).

This book reminded me very much of Max Ehrlich's The Big Eye because it was
...more
James
Dec 11, 2007 James rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Asimov Fans
I read this collection because there were stories in it that were not included with “The Complete Robot” I will only be touching on the stories not included in “I, Robot” or “The Complete Robot”

The Prime of Life
Is a Poem about how everyone thinks he is old, yet he feels young. It is just pretty neat to read as it gives you some insight into the man himself and, is in its own way quite humorous.

Waterclap
A neat story about the conflicts between people who live in Inner and Outer Space, this shows
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Migdalia
What made this so enjoyable was the author's commentary, which added great insight into his character and imagination. It also provided insight into the world of writing and publishing.

The stories themselves are - of course - well written and very entertaining. The other nice thing is that most were truly short (about 10-15 pp); so, if you're pressed for time, you can finish a story in between activities. On the other hand, if you have time to spare, the stories fly, and you feel like you got a
...more
Leonardo
Feb 27, 2014 Leonardo rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Lovers of classic sci-fi
Recommended to Leonardo by: Lorena
Among Asimov's vast work, his robot fiction is perhaps the most renowned, and several of the stories included in this classic anthology of the short stories that he wrote between 1966 and 1976 are a definitive prove of it. Several of them explore the complexities and intricacies of the real-world application of the three laws of robotics and the mistrut that human beings would feel towards robots, particularly when they "deviate" from their role as mere servants and machines and reason their way ...more
Amy
I just finished reading the novella The Bicentennial Man. After spending several weeks absorbing research about Asimov and robot stories, this one stands out among the rest. It is very poignant. It is definitely one of his best robot stories.
Otis Campbell
"For my own part, I have never had a thought which I could not set down
in words with even more distinctness than that with which I conceived it.
There is, however, a class of fancies of exquisite delicacy which are not
thoughts, and to which as yet I have found it absolutely impossible to
adapt to language. These fancies arise in the soul, alas how rarely.
Only at epochs of most intense tranquility, when the bodily and mental
health are in perfection. And at those weird points of time, where the
confi
...more
Lili Cruz
La historia del hombre bicentenario me encantó, el final es conmovedor y deja un gran mensaje, no se le puede negar la libertad a ningún objeto con la mentalidad suficiente como para entender y desear ese estado.

Otra de las historias incluidas en la versión que leí, "La última pregunta", es impresionante, me encantó la parte de "¡Hágase la luz!", esta historia y la de "Razón" son simplemente geniales.

Vale mucho la pena leer a Isaac Asimov, no solo por la parte de ciencia ficción si no también po
...more
Lisa (Harmonybites)
Apr 21, 2010 Lisa (Harmonybites) rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Science Fiction Fans
Arthur C. Clarke said that science fiction done well at the least can give the pleasure of a "good puzzle" and entertain. Asimov is always science fiction done well, and this collection is no exception. I don't think Asimov has a strong prose style, and his characters are rarely memorable. But in the best stories by him I've read, such as "The Dead Past" or "Nightfall" he can stun me by making me see the world in a whole new way.

I don't think any of the stories here are of that order--with the
...more
Luke Devenish
It's not every day that sci-fi can make you teary, but the title story in this anthology got me blubbing beautifully. It is exquisite. And yes, I've seen the movie, which I also liked, but this, the original, is so much more affecting for the emotional punch of robot Andrew's two hundred year journey and the sheer, sob-worthy beauty of its ending - which the filmed version foolishly eschewed. Crazy! It would have been far better for being truthful to Azimov's idea. This story was just so sublime ...more
Caiti
I want to love Asimov, but I still just can't get totally on board with sci-fi. I have yet to finish this book, clocking in at 7 out of 11 stories. Following are my synopses and thoughts for each of the 7:
1) The Prime of Life - A self-portrait of a poem with a smart, witty commentary.

2) Feminine Intuition - a fascinating little story about a "woman" robot and the power of an intuitive mind. Quite humorous.

3) Waterclap - The safety of Ocean-Deep is compromised. This short, though I'd say not one
...more
Malcolmaffleck
Having never read any of Asimov's work before, I was interested to see what one of the greats of Science Fiction was all about. In many ways, these stories have made me more interested in reading his longer form novels - he clearly has an excellent idea of what happens in his vision of the future (although some points, particularly with regards to views on women contain clear remnants of 60s/70s thinking) and has some major characters that I think deserve more exploring than the few brief mentio ...more
Carlos Mendez
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Steve Dalton
This is a good book, which was probably even better when the stories were still "fresh". The writing style is somewhat simplistic, and the various "twists" that occur in some of the stories are quite obvious. But perhaps that wouldn't be true decades ago, when they were first written.

"Bicentennial Man" is, in my opinion, the best story in the collection, and I think Mr. Asimov agrees. Still, the prefaces to each tale are interesting, and you get a nice, unencumbered view into Asimov's thought pr
...more
Sophia
It’s never easy to review short story collections because they can be so very mixed, and this was no exception. By far the best (and fortunately also the longest) was the title story. The Bicentennial Man is the story of a robot who, by some quirk of his mechanical brain, develops a personality. Over the course of the story, which spans 200 years, he learns to feel emotion and begins to question his role as a mankind’s slave and to desire something that’s unprecedented among robots – freedom. It ...more
Christophe

Andrew est un robot comme les autres. Comme les autres, vraiment? Pas tout à fait. Il est même si singulier qu'il a décidé de devenir libre, malgré les Trois Lois de la Robotique et contre l'opinion de la majorité des êtres humains. Andrew ne sait pas qu'il vient de s'engager dans une lutte qui va changer l'histoire de la robotique, des robots et de l'humanité elle-même.

« L'homme bicentenaire » est l'une des nouvelles les plus connues et l'une des préférées de l'auteur. Elle a été adaptée au c

...more
George
While it was nice to delve back into the fiction of my youth, I also now understand why it was the fiction of my 'youth'. Of course the world has moved on and I have moved on and what I found intriguing at 10 in 1976 does not hold me as well. 40ish years has changed a lot - in what is possible in the world and our dreams and also what I expect from a story. Yes even a short story. My love of Asimov has not diminished, just put into perspective.
Michael Tildsley
This was kind of "middle of the road" for Asimov. Sort of a hit-or-miss collection. There were stories that I liked a lot, stories that I liked a little, and stories that were bad (sorry, Isaac).

I feel like Asimov's true area of fiction talent is in novels and novellas, not short stories. While some are passable, my big gripe with his short stories as a group is that they tend to be bogged down in explaining the "hard science" of whatever the topic in question is to the point that the character
...more
Kenneth Rathburn
It's rather clear that this book by Isaac Asimov will strike some as fascinating and others as unrealistically off-putting. But part of what makes this book captivating for readers such as myself is simply the journey a future household robot makes to gain acceptance as a human and truly feel. While it's not masterpiece quality (partly due to its lack of plausibility), this doesn't interfere with the ultimate point and, generally, the delivery of what Asimov is trying to make. Andrew becomes a c ...more
Diego Eusse
Es un poco rápida la narración de la historia pero se puede decir que es debido a su expansión de tiempo. La lectura a simple vista es buena y sencilla, sin embargo, se logra entre ver unos mensajes de una gran magnitud para la humanidad.
En definitivas es uno de los libros que de niños deberíamos leer todos.
Jules
Read this during my university degree back in the 90s, as part of the Philosophy of Science Fiction module, & absolutely loved it. I had a huge interest in TV, film & toy robots as a child, so it was great being able to study the subject at uni.
Cecily Robertson
As someone who is not really a fan of science fiction (save Adams), I didn't really enjoy the stories in this book. In fact, I only read a few before skipping to the one I really wanted to read--Bicentennial Man. The introductions written by Asimov before each story were in themselves highly amusing! If he had written his actual work in the same voice I would have liked them a lot better. Bicentennial Man was the best story I read, but even so, I didn't feel like it was as good as the movie. Sad ...more
Suhas Rao
It is really sad that I have to give only one review for this collection. Except 2 , all stories were average. The exceptions being "Bicentennial man" and "That thou art mindful of him" , both worthy of 5 stars and more.Bicentennial man explores what it truly means to be human and Andrews evolution into it. Notable line(paraphrased) "You were the sesquicentennial robot but now you are the bicentennial man". Same is true of "That thou art mindful of him", little lesser known , explores the darker ...more
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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) Foundation and Empire (Foundation, #2) Second Foundation (Foundation, #3) The Foundation Trilogy (Foundation, #1-3)

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“There is no right to deny freedom to any object with a mind advanced enough to grasp the concept and desire the state.” 13 likes
“The Three Laws of Robotics:

1. A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.

2. A robot must obey the orders given it by human beings except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.

3. A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Law.”
2 likes
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