Hothouse
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Hothouse

3.64 of 5 stars 3.64  ·  rating details  ·  1,799 ratings  ·  129 reviews
In this science fiction classic, we are transported millions of years from now, to the boughs of a colossal banyan tree that covers one face of the globe. The last remnants of humanity are fighting for survival, terrorised by the carnivorous plants and the grotesque insect life.

Contents:

· Hothouse · Brian W. Aldiss · nv F&SF Feb ’61
· Nomansland · Brian W. Aldiss · nv...more
Mass Market Paperback, 309 pages
Published December 1st 1984 by Baen (first published 1962)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Stephen
A FAR-FUTURE Earth where PLANTS are at the TOP of the FOOD CHAIN, HUMANS are MEALS and GIANT, SPIDER-LIKE PLANTS travel on webs between the MOON and EARTH...that is not just COOL....that's BLACK DYNAMITE COOL!!
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4.5 to 5.0 stars. This book is all about WORLD-BUILDING and Brian Aldiss has created a TRIPtastically SUPERB vision of a “far future” Earth unlike anything I have ever read. In the distant future, evolution has decided to BOOT the “Animal Kingdon” square in the nether-regions…
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…and plants...more
Henry Avila
In the far distant future with the dying Sun above, all the Earth has been overrun by vegetation.Old Sol stays in the same position in the sky.Shining on half the Earth. The other part is a frozen wasteland ,in perpetual darkness...It's a plant world for sure.The few humans left, have returned to the trees,(there is just one,a Banyan, in reality), and turned green, the humans I mean.A "Hothouse" (the name of the novel originally), in fact Terra has become.These people are primitive.Living high a...more
Michael Fierce
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After reaching the halfway mark, I threw this book down (you can read later why) only to pick it up again because 1) I think it unfair when someone rates/reviews a book they haven't finished, as I have never felt that was a fair way to judge a book, potentially destroying an author's chance to reach an audience, perhaps even ruining their career, and 2) This was a HUGO AWARD WINNING BOOK and I strongly believed there must have been a good reason why!

But, I didn't follow my own rules of doing th...more
Manny
Hallucinatory 60s novel, possibly written on drugs, which depicts a far-future Earth in which humans have evolved into tiny creatures who live in a giant forest that covers the globe. Oh, and there are spider-webs that stretch up to the moon... a sort of biological space elevator. Read the book to find out what the deal is with the fungi. None of it makes sense, but the images are striking.
Adam
Feb 28, 2012 Adam rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: scifi
If you put aside the shoddy science and employ your suspension of disbelief to the fullest, than this is a blast of a story. A distant future where humans are hunted by evolved plants and giant insects in a world that resembles a giant rainforest. I had so much fun reading about the setting that I didn't even care that the plot was flimsy. This is a fun tour through a very imaginative landscape.
Ivana
I remember enjoying reading this novel way back in high school. Recently when it was given to me as a present, I had a chance to reread it- and I really liked it again.

Hothouse is set in far, far future. The sun has grown enormous as it approaches its end, and the life on Earth (that has stopped rotating around the sun btw)is mostly plant life engaged in a crazy frenzy of eating and being eaten, speedy growth and decay, something like a tropical forest on steroids. Human beings are small and me...more
Sean Ward
What is there to say but this: it read like a Brian Aldiss story.

Much like some of his other work I've read, there sometimes is this feeling of trudging through the story; that if you don't force your way through that point in the narrative that you will probably put the book down and just abandon it altogether. Once you think you're in the clear, you find yourself mired in another narrative bog. Now, don't take this the wrong way; everything I've read by Aldiss has been enjoyable for me in one...more
Ben
Written in 1962, Brian Aldiss' Hothouse is similar to works like Jack Vance's "Dying Earth" series and Gene Wolfe's Book of the New Sun. In most novels of this dying earth genre, the world is gasping under the weight of civilization; a million years of customs and artifacts, countless empires risen and fallen, cities piled upon cities. In Hothouse, it's nature, not culture which dominates the last days of Man.

Far in the future, under a swollen red sun, the Earth and Moon have long since dragged...more
Rhys
One of the best novels I have read this year. In fact I think it is the best novel I read in 2010. Brian Aldiss' second SF novel, less intricate in terms of plot than many of his other books, but packed full of highly original ideas and very strange situations. The main character, Gren, embarks on a journey in a far-future version of Earth where the sun has grown vast in the sky and carnivorous plants have come to dominate the food-chain. Imagine The Day of the Triffids on a truly global scale w...more
Jamie Rose
I found this really hard to rate. It is extremely odd and not so much a story with characters as much as a fantastical travelogue. Some of the more comic scenes reminded me of Candide (recently read, fresh in the memory!) in the 'buffoons in an allegory' stakes, but Hothouse is also in turn violent and nightmarish, hallucinatory in the extreme (an accidental astral journey through the cosmos via a psychic building anyone?), hugely inventive and quite often really gross. Science fiction is I gues...more
Zach
It's probably been close to a decade since I've read this book and the image of the earth and the moon shrouded together by gigantic spiderwebs still sticks with me.
Martinxo
Classic SF. Is this where Devo got the idea for de-evolution?
Ubik
Not Aldiss' strongest for sure. The pacing was definitely not what I come to expect from him; at some points frenetic, and other times sluggish. I also expect more of a vibrancy in his choice of words. Aldiss usually has a way of making his words dance across the page for me. But everything was pretty plain here. I have a penchant for the "plants taking over the world" subgenre so all the lifeforms talked about in the novel were fascinating to me. It definitely kept me interested from page to pa...more
Apatt
I seldom reread books because there are too many interesting unread books in the world to catch up with but some books just haunt me, demanding to be reread because I have forgotten too many details. I was walking around in a lush garden and I was reminded of this book and felt the need to reread it. This book is set on a far future Earth near the end of its existence, the sun is imminently going nova, human society and civilization have crumbled long ago. Plants and vegetable reign supreme, and...more
Fungus Gnat
“Hothouse” was the name collectively applied to a series of stories by Brian Aldiss appearing in 1961. When in the following year the stories were melded together into a novel, the name was retained in Britain but in the United States it was sold under the name “The Long Afternoon of Earth.” In 2009, it was reissued by IDW Publishing of San Diego as a trade paperback under the original title.

The story takes place in the far future, when the sun has grown brighter and plant growth has increased...more
Jenny (Reading Envy)
Giant plants and bugs, spiderwebs that stretch between the earth and moon, and morels that outsmart humans. Hilarious. (I don't think it is supposed to be!)
Robbie
The overwhelming characteristic of this book is one of absolute strangeness - strangeness to the point of implausibility. The fact that many (almost certainly most) of the ideas of this book could never, given infinite eternities, become reality does not detract from the enjoyability of this book. Its interest indeed lies in the utterly freakish plant-dominated world depicted by the author. This future earth is the site of a perpetual and violent war between all sorts of supremely deadly, mobile...more
Gerald Kinro
The sun is dying and the earth never spins. Thus half of the earth never sees daylight. The other half experiences only late afternoon. Animal life has been reduced to a few species, humans being one of them. These humans lead a tribal existence to survive. One human race has been reduced to “vegetables”. While they fish, they always return to the trees to which they attach themselves with their tails for security. Unthinking, unmotivated, they prefer their catatonic existence to one of freedom....more
Leo Walsh
Hothouse by Brian Aldiss is an odd book. An unnamed disaster has destroyed human civilization, leaving in its place pygmy humans who live like animals in a dangerous, very violent jungle populated almost exclusively by vegetable matter. And the jungle has taken over at least half of the world because the earth now, like the moon, has one side continually facing the sun, which gets hot.

This is not, however, our ancestor's jungle. Instead of peaceful, these jungle plants have teeth. Literally. I...more
Simon

Set many millions of years in the future, on a hot Earth that has stopped spinning, with humans relegated to a modest ecological niche in a gigantic forest consisting of just one endless banyan tree, this manages, just, to remain on the right side of that often thin line in sci-fi between the awesome and the ridiculous. Anybody with kids under eight (other than ‘telly-avoiding nobbers’ ©Terry Clague) won’t be able to read this without thinking about Tree Fu Tom or the Teletubbies at various poin...more
Paul Darcy
No, it’s not one of those X-Rated erotica books or a guide to growing greenhouse vegetables, but it does share two similarities: sex and vegetables. But then if one looked hard enough just about every book out there has those two elements in it mentioned somewhere.

But this book Hothouse but Brian Aldiss is quite different. So different in fact that I haven’t read anything quite like it in all my years of reading (thirty plus) and I am glad I finally got around to it. My shelves are bursting with...more
Rafal Jasinski
Jakże odmienna, od najbardziej rozpropagowanego w literaturze science-fiction, wizja świata po apokalipsie. Inna, aczkolwiek nie mniej przygnębiająca, bliska temu, czym uraczył nas w swoim "Wehikule czasu" Wells. Świat zdominowany przez florę, której przedstawiciele na przestrzeni wieków nauczyli się kopiować najbardziej przydatne cechy świata zwierzęcego, a przy tym umniejszenie roli człowieka, zrównanie go z niczym nie znaczącym pyłkiem na wietrze - te idee, w połączeniu z nieco baśniową narra...more
Paul 'Pezski' Perry
One of the books that first introduced me to SF, Aldiss' tale of a distant future Earth where humanity - a much changed, reduced species - lives a precarious life in the high branches of the continent-spanning banyan tree, until a member of one of the tiny tribes in which they live is infested with morel, an intelligent parasitic fungus. Gren and his tribe find their way to a new home, battling dangers, mostly of a mobile, predatory vegetable nature, which has become the dominant form under the...more
Michael D
I've read a few books in this vein, humanity scurrying for survival in a hostile ecological world, but this outstrips all in its inventive scope and sheer speculative weirdness. The species described within are truly brilliant creations and the main characters develop well throughout their many ordeals.Indeed, the fact that one of the main characters is a slimy blob of megalomaniac snot tells you that this is not exactly your run-of-the-mill SF.

If are looking to read something that will take y...more
Eloy
I read it long, long time ago, but the impact is still fresh. I should read it again. Amazing.
Larry
I enjoyed this when I read it years ago, and now I have a new Penguin edition I'll have to revisit it sometime!
Hmmm its funny but re-reading it I didn't remember anything-it was like I was reading it anew!
Well having finished it I can honestly say its more fantasy than SF! And the odd thing is when reading it I found I didnt remember any of it! My memories of the book went as far as kids running on a beach and finding a morel!
I found the Tummy-belly men very annoying-an early publisher recommend...more
Carrie Robinson
Fantastical, Phantasmagorical and Far-Out


Millions of years into the future and plants have evolved while humans and the few animal species left have devolved. "It was no longer a place for mind. It was a place for growth, for vegetables. It was like a hothouse." Plants are carniverous, they have tongues, mouths, stomachs, locomotion. Dripperlip, Whistlethistle, Killerwillow, Fuzzypuzzle, Wiltmilt, Trappersnapper, Thinpin--these are some of the great names Aldiss gives them. It's a vegetation-ru...more
P.J. Wetzel
First a personal note. Here is a book that I first read 50 years ago, at the time when it won a Hugo award. I loved it then. It made a lasting impression. It is enlightening to see how my memory of the book contrasts with my current impressions. Back then I was struck by the wildly imaginative setting and several of the vivid scenes.

What impresses me now, apart from the author's far-reaching imagination, is his skill at constructing the tale. Using a rich vocabulary and engaging prose, Aldiss ac...more
Steve Wasling
Highly imaginative vision of a far future world where humanity has 'devolved' and one tree covers virtually all of Earth's tidally locked day-side. Most animal life has disappeared and has been supplanted by mobile and often predatory plant life, creating an extremely hazardous environment for the various remaining races (or possibly species) of mankind, to whom death by vicious vegetable has become an almost daily occurrence!

This, like the film Avatar which I imagine was in part inspired by thi...more
Tiara
I felt like the first 200 pages were slow. Sure, Mr. Aldiss is a great world-building and this story is very creative.. but it took 200 pages for me to actually want to read it and even then it had its waning moments.
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Pseudonyms: Jael Cracken, Peter Pica, John Runciman, C.C. Shackleton, Arch Mendicant, & "Doc" Peristyle.

Brian Wilson Aldiss is one of the most important voices in science fiction writing today. He wrote his first novel while working as a bookseller in Oxford. Shortly afterwards he wrote his first work of science fiction and soon gained international recognition. Adored for his innovative liter...more
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“The misfortune of a young man who returns to his native land after years away is that he finds his native land foreign; whereas the lands he left behind remain for ever like a mirage in his mind.
However, misfortune can itself sow seeds of creativity.

---- Afterword to "Hothouse" Brian Aldiss”
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“This shall be home, where danger was my cradle, and all we have learned will guard us!” 2 likes
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