I won't even read the other reviews first (I know from real life what people think of this book compared to the others in Asimov's Foundation series),I won't even read the other reviews first (I know from real life what people think of this book compared to the others in Asimov's Foundation series), but it's the only Asimov on my "Favorites" list, and as such it sorta represents the whole Foundation series to me, and deserves to represent because it's proof that a writer can finish a series with no loose ends in a reasonable amount of time SO DAMNED WELL.
(The prequels, I'm not including in the Foundation series; they're optional, and I didn't enjoy them. So THIS book is the finale for me.)
The first three I read [and loved] [and re-read] when I was younger, the fourth gave me an uneasy feeling but left me wanting a conclusion, and this was a conclusion; a period —no, an exclamation point! — at the end of a fine series that needn't be (and wasn't) drawn out overly long. Thank you Asimov for showing 'em how it's done!
I suppose because there was so much time between the books being published (I wasn't born when the trilogy was published, and didn't know about Edge (#4) and Earth (#5) until years after I read the trilogy), I felt like I was ON that journey to find Earth. The excitement in this book for me was that there WAS a meaningful conclusion with all the answers I needed.
I've started losing faith in "series writers" (particular sci fi, but also hist. fiction, and these days mass market pulp fiction), but Asimov showed you could conclude a mystery well and end the series and leave 'em satisfied. I couldn't want more because there WAS no more. OVER. THE END! Thank you!
Was it simple, maybe even young adult fiction? Maybe. But Asimov FINISHED it. (I'm tempted to start zeroing out the stars of books I liked but are part of an unfinished series which may never be finished... glares at Robert Jordan's corpse.) Series Authors Everywhere: re-read Asimov's Foundation series and learn the value of ENDING a series, no matter how epic the scope. Use Foundation as a measuring stick....more
I knocked a star only because I liked Childhood's End so much better. Love the science in this book, found it to be a quick and enjoyable read each tiI knocked a star only because I liked Childhood's End so much better. Love the science in this book, found it to be a quick and enjoyable read each time I've read it, and will re-read it again. Favorite Clarke? No. Top 100 SciFi ever? Absolutely. This guy can write, period, though the characters in this particular novel don't draw me in as much as other Clarke novels....more