David's Reviews > The Cyberiad

The Cyberiad by Stanisław Lem
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Jul 23, 10

bookshelves: insanely-brilliant-sci-fi

This book has the best first line of any book in world literature ("one day Trurl the constructor put together a machine that could create anything starting with the letter n.") It's definitely my favorite Lem, too. By far the funniest. Some of the Pirx the Pilot stories are almost as funny, but never with such consistency.

Probably can't add too much to the other reviews except to say: I actually read this before I read Rabelais, so I didn't realize how much this is a modern version of the same thing - well, minus the crude humor, etc, but totally running with the crazy mock scholarship, over-educated characters making absurd lists and doing utterly inappropriate things. Making all the characters robots makes it... might one even speak of an intellectual carnivalesque? There's a tradition of authors who just purely play with ideas (Borges, Calvino are common comparisons) but no one else I can think of has nearly so much fun with it.
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