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The Abyss

4.01 of 5 stars 4.01  ·  rating details  ·  12,951 ratings  ·  85 reviews
Far beneath the blue Caribbean sea lies Deepcore, the world's most advanced high-technology drilling station. When a mysterious force sends the submarine USS Montana spinning out of control, Deepcore is commandeered as the base for a naval rescue operation. Lindsay Brigman, designer of Deepcore, insists on joining the team. When the operation gets underway, she witnesses s ...more
Published January 5th 1991 by Pocket (first published 1989)
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This book was an incredible work of science fiction. I read it as a teenager the same summer that the movie came out. A friend and I were big fans of James Cameron's "The Terminator" and "Aliens," so when we heard he had a new movie coming out, we were pretty excited. Then my mom brought home this book by Orson Scott Card, and I knew it would be great.

Once again, you can understand my bias on things. The protagonist in "The Abyss" is a female aeronautical engineer. I really admired her and saw a
May 14, 2008 Sackinger rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: every man, woman, and teen on the planet.
If I said, "A tour de force" would you hit me? I saw the movie, "The Abyss" and consider it to be excellent. Better by far than any other scifi/adventure movie made after 1930.

When I heard that Orson Scott Card had made a novel based off the movie, I was sorely disappointed. No novel from show ever works. Movies should be made from nothing larger than a novelette in my opinion. So why was Card making substandard work?

Then I read it.

I apologize most sincerely, Mr. Card, for ever having doubted y
Sarah Rains
Jan 09, 2008 Sarah Rains rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who loved the movie
Recommended to Sarah by: my grandfather
This was a really great book. If you liked the movie you'll LOVE the book. So many times in science fiction there isn't a lot of characterization.........not with this book. You know these characters and you can relate to them in some way.
I have to stop getting drawn in to nostalgic reads - seriously I have nothing but praise for this book (recent controversies aside). Orson Scott Card was introduced to me by a friend at University (yes while one friend was getting me to read fantasy and Raymond E Feist, another was getting me to read Enders Game and Orson Scott Card). Well this was a happy mix for me - and one even now I cannot resist re-reading - even with so many new and untried books to explore.
The book pretty much follows t
I can watch the movie again and again, and can read the novella again and again. It is spectacular, and contains more background than the movie did. One of my favorites, actually.
Eh. This book was okay in some ways, and occasionally you could see a glimmer of OSC genius poking through, but there were two major flaws for me: A) it was a bit cliche, which I guess isn't really OSC's fault since the novel is based on a screenplay by James Cameron, who is talented in some ways but not even on the same level creatively as OSC, but... really? Aliens down at the very bottom of the sea who are human enough to have eyes and hands and who give a crap about humans? Who have somethin ...more
a book based on the movie screenplay and dailies much like 2001.

Card writes exposition rather than demonstration here. but the characters are fleshed out quite well, both human and alien. at the beginning, it’s a little like reading through an expanded character list of a play complete with character bios. at certain points, Mr. Card seemed compelled to insert detail from the movie visual-verbatim to make sure that iconic shot or gesture or whatever made it into the scene playing out in your hea
James Caterino
One of best novelizations you will ever read. But to call it a novelization would be a dis-service. It is a brilliant epic science fiction novel by a master writer in top form. It pulls off the seemingly impossible and manages to take the vision of one of the most gifted cinematic storytellers of all time and translate it to the novel form.
Always loved the movie, but the book added so much more depth to it. The book was written while the movie was being filmed, so when you're reading it, you can picture every scene almost perfectly, but what Orson Scott Card did was add so much depth to the characters that you've now got additional into their motivations.
Brenda Duvernet
This book is a good read. As I remember, it was not violent and didn't have profanity.
It was a page turner.
I have read this over and over. Card added a backstory for the three main movie characters that helped them in their performances. It's my favorite Cameron film, and a novelisation by my favorite author is a perfect blend. It helped me enjoy the film even more. The language is horrendous to my reading ears, but somehow I look past it, which I don't to most of the time.
I read this in junior high after seeing the movie many times. I LOVED it. I'm sure I wouldn't rate it as high if I reread it, but who knows. I think everyone's five star books are a personal thing. Just because I loved it does not mean I think it's a masterpiece or that everyone else should love it as well.
Jaime Contreras
This was a decent novelization by a skilled writer. The story itself is novel and plausible if you believe in aliens. I found it a good read and reflective of the film. I also commend OSC for his fleshed out characters which are better than the plot. Overall, this is agood book but not great.
Kelly Knapp
While I am used to books being different than their cinamatic counterparts, this one surprised me with the amount of differences. From character' names to the state of politics, everything seemed different.

Perhaps the greatest difference was that instead of a hurricane as the catastrophy up on the ocean's crest, it was more about politics. Then, I did a little reading and was amazed to find that the book was not the inspiration for the movie, but in fact, the movie inspire Orson Scott Card to w
I watched the movies many times and read lots of Card's books, so I was interested to read his novel adaptation. It added more depth to some of the characters and was competently done.
This is a novel adaptation from the movie. I didn't know they did that. I was a good read and I relived everything I loved from the movie as I turned the pages.
Patrick Razo
It's rare when a novelization is better than the movie. But a novelization of a James Cameron movie by Orson Scott Card of "Ender's Game" fame? Perfect combo, and an awesome read.
One of my all time favourite movies beautifully adapted into a novel including the original deleted sub plot James Cameron couldn't include in the movie.
At first I didn't think I liked this book at all. But as I kept reading, it sort of grew on mr and in the end I really enjoyed it
Otis Campbell
With all memory and fate driven deep beneath the waves

Really entertaining! And that is coming from a reader that does not particularly care for any story bubbling up from the briny depths. I am a fan of dry land formats. This book, however, combines interesting characters (both human and not-so-much) with excellent and exciting interactions between each other. Edge of your seat suspense taking place at frequent intervals and an exceptionally surprising and unexpected otherworldly ending make this one of my absolute favorites - even with all the moi ...more
Andrew macgibbon
surprisingly very good, it even had the exact same dialoge as the movie.
Mostly, movies are either based on existing novels or short stories, or else the novelization follows the movie. In the latter case, the novels are usually forgettable. In this case, the novel was written in concert with the movie. Novelist Orson Scott Card and and director James Cameron collaborated as both the movie and the novel developed, and each made adjustments along the way to accommodate the visions each developed for plot and characterization. The result was both a movie and a novel th ...more
This is wh I prefer books to movies. I don't remember crying durring the movie and yet I'll admit I did while reading. I think movies do their best to make it seem real while books make us want it to be real. James Cameron wrote "seeing is believing." Sorry I think we only beleive what we chose to. It's reading that allows me to turn off reality and live in the book. I like watching the movie, but it was a lifetime ago. Now I want to rewatch the movie,but there is no doubt that the master Card h ...more
Fred D
Very good adaptation of the movie. I really liked both the book and the movie. Both were very suspenseful. They kept me on the edge of my seat. The end of the movie was weak, but in the book Card did a much better job explaining the end of the story. He also includes some chapters at the beginning that go into some background behind each of the main characters. It helps to get the know the characters better, but it causes the book to get off to a slow start. Nevertheless, the background info was ...more
Normalmente il libro è la base di partenza dove poi si svilupperà la sceneggiatura del relativo film. Non in questo caso! E' il romanzo che si è basato sulla sceneggiatura del film "The Abyss". La storia si basa principalmente sul rapporto tra la progettista della struttura sottomarina ed il caposquadra che dovrà vivere all'interno della stessa base. Rapporto che troverà la parte più intensa verso la fine del romanzo. Di contorno storie di alieni, militari paranoici e civili troppo attaccati al ...more
And here Orson Scott Card pulls off the impossible. Books made off of movies always suck... Before this book I had a rule - book begets movie, the book is always better - movie begets book, the movie is always better... this is because the book is constrained to the script of the movie... not so fast. This is the ONLY book I've ever read made after the movie that is actually better than the movie and the Abyss is one of my favorite movies. Card is a magician. 4.5 rounded up for this distinction.

Pour récupérer les secrets d'un sous-marin nucléaire immobilisé au bord d'une immense crevasse par 700 mètres de fond au coeur de l'océan, l'armée américaine envoie une équipe de spécialistes à bord d'un prototype sous-marin. Dans les grandes profondeurs se noue une extraordinaire aventure. Qui aurait cru que dans les eaux noires et glacées existe une autre forme de vie intelligente et aux aguets ? Pour anéantir ou sauver les humains ?

One of the best novelisations of a film or TV show that I've read. Card was writing the book, as the film was still being made, which makes for an interesting writing process.
It expands on the histories and personalities of all the characters, but focuses on Bud, Lindsey, and Coffey. It makes Coffey, in particular, far more sympathetic and interesting than the 2D portrayal of the crazed military goon in the movie.
"Hey, this was alright, considering that its a novelization of The Abyss and all." Surely this is backhanded praise, but Card, who I've yet to get into ("Ender's Game" is a perennial favorite among people who don't ordinarily like science fiction, but...), invests effort beyond the call of duty for a meager paycheck such as this and still maintains a sort of dignity, unlike, say, my old punching bag Alan Dean Foster.
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What was wrong? 4 40 Apr 29, 2009 05:21PM  
  • Aliens
  • Close Encounters Of The Third Kind
  • Total Recall
  • E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial in His Adventure on Earth
  • The Poseidon Adventure
  • The Deep
  • Star Wars, Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back (Star Wars, #5)
  • Fantastic Voyage
  • Star Wars, Episode VI: Return of the Jedi (Star Wars, #6)
  • Star Wars, Episode IV: A New Hope (Star Wars, #4)
  • Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show
  • Terminator 2: Judgment Day
  • Star Trek I: The Motion Picture (Star Trek TOS: Movie Novelizations, #1)
  • Planet of the Apes
  • Logan's Run (Logan, #1)
  • Invasion of the Body Snatchers
  • Outbreak (Dr. Marissa Blumenthal, #1)
  • Star Trek II: The Wrath Of Khan (Star Trek TOS: Movie Novelizations, #2)
Orson Scott Card is the author of the novels Ender's Game, Ender's Shadow, and Speaker for the Dead, which are widely read by adults and younger readers, and are increasingly used in schools.
Besides these and other science fiction novels, Card writes contemporary fantasy (Magic Street, Enchantment, Lost Boys), biblical novels (Stone Tables, Rachel and Leah), the American frontier fantasy series Th
More about Orson Scott Card...
Ender's Game (The Ender Quintet, #1) Speaker for the Dead (The Ender Quintet, #2) Ender's Shadow (Ender's Shadow, #1) Xenocide (The Ender Quintet, #3) Children of the Mind (The Ender Quintet, #4)

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