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Prelude to Foundation (Foundation (Chronological Order) #1)

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  47,217 Ratings  ·  1,104 Reviews
It is the year 12,020 G.E. and Emperor Cleon I sits uneasily on the Imperial throne of Trantor. Here in the great multidomed capital of the Galactic Empire, forty billion people have created a civilization of unimaginable technological and cultural complexity. Yet Cleon knows there are those who would see him fall--those whom he would destroy if only he could read the futu ...more
Hardcover, 1st Edition, 420 pages
Published October 6th 1988 by Grafton Books (first published 1988)
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Jim Davis I was just thinking about this when the Sci Fi Aficionados club picked this as one of the books for a group read in November. I have read all the…moreI was just thinking about this when the Sci Fi Aficionados club picked this as one of the books for a group read in November. I have read all the Foundation books in the order they were published and that is my personal preference. I never saw a problem with reading them this way and there is no specific reason for reading then in timeline order. The original trilogy was written in the early 50's and then there was a gap until the early 80's. Fortunately Asimov's writing style and lack of reference to specific technology doesn't make the first trilogy seem dated. But if you prefer your stories to be chronological instead of "flashing" back then you may want to read them in the order of the storyline which would be:

Prelude to Foundation (1988)
Prelude to Foundation (1993)
Foundation (1951)
Foundation and Empire (1952)
Second Foundation (1953)
Foundation's Edge (1982)
Foundation and Earth (1986)

This is from a word document I have that is suppose to be Asimov's suggested order. It's out on the web somewhere but I don't remember where He also recommends reading the Robot stories and novels first and then the Galactic Empire novels because there are some tie-ins, especially with the Robot novels near the end of the foundation series.
Here is the list with the other two series included:

The Complete Robot (1982) Collection of 31 Short Stories about robots.
The Caves of Steel (1954) His first Robot novel.
The Naked Sun (1957) The second Robot novel.
The Robots of Dawn (1983) The third Robot novel.**
Robots and Empire (1985) The fourth (final) Robot novel.**
The Currents of Space (1952) The first Empire novel.
The Stars, Like Dust-- (1951) The second Empire novel.
Pebble in the Sky (1950) The third and final Empire novel.
Prelude to Foundation (1988) The first Foundation novel.
Forward the Foundation (1992) The second Foundation novel.
Foundation (1951) The third Foundation novel, comprised of 5 stories originally published between 1942-1949.
Foundation and Empire (1952) The fourth Foundation novel, comprised of 2 stories originally published in 1945.
Second Foundation (1953) The fifth Foundation novel, comprised of 2 stories originally published in 1948 and 1949.
Foundation's Edge (1982) The sixth Foundation novel.
**there would be no problem if you wanted to move the last two Robot novels here.
Foundation and Earth (1986) The seventh Foundation novel.

As I said my personal preference is to read them in the order they were published and I included those dates if you want to do it that way(less)
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Stephen
In the realm of science fiction, Isaac Asimov’s stories have always been my woobie.
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This rings especially true for his Robot and Foundation series. For me, they’re a literary panic room where I can escape the stress storms and never-ending deadlines of the day-to-day ruckus into a much simpler time where the ambient happy is always turned way up.
 
Yes…yes…before you say it, I'll acknowledge your gripes about Asimov and even concede to some of them.
 
Asimov wasn't as skilled a wordsmith as, say, J
...more
Apatt
Jul 05, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
“What I have done is to prove that it is possible to choose starting conditions from which historical forecasting does not descend into chaotic conditions, but can become predictable within limits. However, what those starting conditions might be I do not know, nor am I sure that those conditions can be found by any one person—or by any number of people—in a finite length of time..”

That is pretty much the gist of what Hari Seldon, Asimov’s most iconic character, tries to accomplish in Prelude to
...more
Peter
Jun 11, 2007 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Unless you're just a die-hard Foundation fan and have to read them all, "Prelude to Foundation" can safely be skipped. In particular, I'm not sure that I would recommend reading it prior to the other Foundation novels despite the fact that it's a prequel.

It's not spoiling anything to briefly explain why this is. In "Foundation," which is really more a shorts collection than a novel despite the fact that the stories do flow very well together, Hari Seldon is already an old man. The whole premise
...more
Fan De Bauer
May 13, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned-books, releidos
THAT twist.
John
Aug 16, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf-fantasy
My first Asimov book, it was both wonderful and disappointing. I loved the hugeness of the imagination at work here. The bizarre and diverse societies of Trantor with their rituals, structures, foods, ways of living, and just the physical structure of the world itself, with multiple layers and a surface covered with sand and the occasional forest, made for fun reading. As for the disappointments, although it is probably a cliché at this point, I could not stand the squareness of the dialogue, th ...more
Mahdi Lotfi
مجموعهٔ بنیاد نام مجموعهای ۷ جلدی از آیزاک آسیموف است که مشهورترین مجموعهٔ علمی-تخیلی خوانده شدهاست. داستان این مجموعه به ترتیب زمان انتشار پیش نمیرود، بلکه آسیموف ابتدا جلدهای سوم (بنیاد)، چهارم(بنیاد و امپراطوری) و پنجم (بنیاد دوم) را نوشت و سپس با وقفهای طولانی مدت و بر اثر اصرار خوانندگان جلدهای ششم (لبه بنیاد) و هفتم (بنیاد و زمین) را به آن افزود. پس از آن با وقفهای نسبتا طولانی جلد اول مجموعه (سرآغاز بنیاد) و در نهایت نیز اندکی پیش از مرگش جلد دوم (پیشبرد بنیاد) را نوشتهاست. ترتیب نگارش ای ...more
C.
This really wasn't that bad - in fact I enjoyed it quite a lot - but it was very disappointing. It is an entirely different kind of book to Foundation, which was about concepts. Not amazingly written, certainly, but neither was this, and without the great concepts, there's not a huge amount left.

I think it would be a bit harsh to say that this book was written to cash in on the phenomenon that was Foundation, though I suspect that is part of it. What probably happened is that Asimov realised tha
...more
Nicolás
Sep 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016, favorites
Muy bueno. Quizás al comienzo pueda percibirse un poco densa la historia pero vale la pena terminar el libro, del capitulo "Billibotton" en adelante se pueden empezar a sacar algunas conclusiones. El desenlace/final es genial, me gustó mucho.
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Ciclo de la Fundación (o Ciclo de Trántor)

- Prelude to Foundation (Preludio a la Fundación) . Primera precuela a la serie de la Fundación. Hari Seldon esboza las bases de la psicohistoria y queda atrapado en un
...more
Ana  Vlădescu
Finally! After all these years! I have finished the first book of Foundation. What exactly took me so long, I will never know... I really enjoyed this work, it's high-quality SF, with all the societal elements inserted in it, all the questions about humanity posed and all of the wonders of the possible future bestowed on the reader. Brilliant for someone who loves the genre - and I most certainly am in love with science fiction, it sparks the imagination in a completely different way than any ot ...more
Daniel Bastian
"Why, he wondered, did so many people spend their lives not trying to find answers to questions—not even thinking of questions to begin with? Was there anything more exciting in life than seeking answers?"

(Note: As with other reviews in this series, spoilers to follow.)

After five novels spanning as many centuries, one might have supposed Asimov's stepwise tinkering with his Foundation universe had come to an end. The adventures of Golan Trevize, Janov Pelorat, and Bliss concluded in Foundation a
...more
Tobin Elliott
Nov 07, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook, fiction, sf
Well, wasn't this a dreadful little book?

It's been decades since I read any Asimov, but I remember him with fondness for the the original Foundation trilogy I read in the late-70s, along with several of his other novels.

I do, however, have no recollection of his narrative style whatsoever. After finishing this travesty, that actually scares the shit out of me for considering the other nine books in this series.

Prelude to Foundation reads like it was written by a somewhat over-intelligent twelve-
...more
Sesana
Mar 25, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
I'm working on reading the Foundation-related books in internal chronological order. I've worked through the Robots and Empire books, and now I'm moving on to the Foundation books. Is this a good idea? It's probably still too soon for me to say. I imagine that somebody who's read Foundation would have a totally different reaction. For me, it was my first exposure to psychohistory, so it worked to see what I guess you could call the birth of the idea. I didn't need to see details into what exactl ...more
Martin
Dec 14, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"You mean that something quite accidental came to be viewed as a tradition?" p.118

"No no. I mean 'primitive' only in that it has been known as long as our records go back, that its discovery is shrouded in the mists of antiquity as is that of fire or the wheel." p.168

"So you insult us by asking about out religion, as though we have ever called on a mystrious, insubstantial spirit to do for us what we cannot do for ourselves." p.230

"They would support, as such, even that perfectly ridiculous tale
...more
Vicho
Mar 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4.5? 5?
No lo sé, la cosa es que me gustó!!! Asimov ha recomendado leer su saga en orden cronológico, pero "yo soy rebelde porque los libros me han hecho así"... jaaaa yo recomendaría leer definitivamente primero la Trilogía aaaantes de leer la precuela. El motivo es que siento que apreciarás mejor algunas referencias que se verán realidad en la Trilogía. Bueno es solo una impresión de alguien que recién se adentra al mundo de Asimov XD.
Durante varias partes de la novela, sentí que las acciones
...more
Maanasa
Sep 03, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
I did the unthinkable when it comes to reading the Foundation series and started with Prelude (I recently also finished Forward the Foundation and have started reading Foundation). I read the book slowly during my commute, and I found myself getting progressively more annoyed with how quickly I got to and from work. I felt like the book went 0-60 in no time as it immediately set a brisk pace that it would follow for the rest of the book. I found that the flight of Hari Seldon was both exciting a ...more
Tomislav
Some day I'm going to read the novels of Asimov's future history in story order...

1 The End of Eternity (stand-alone) 1955
2 I, Robot (short stories) 1950
3 The Caves of Steel (Robot) 1954
4 The Naked Sun (Robot) 1957
5 The Robots of Dawn (Robot) 1983
6 Robots and Empire (Robot) 1985
7 The Stars, Like Dust (Empire) 1951
8 The Currents of Space (Empire) 1952
9 Pebble In The Sky (Empire) 1950
10 Prelude to Foundation (Foundation Prequel) 1988
11 Forward the Foundation (Foundation Prequel) 1991
12 Foundation
...more
Sarah Alirezaee
بالاخره یک کتاب از آسیموف رو تموم کردم!
یادمه اولین باری هم که کتابِ ادبیات گمانهزن خوندم، کتابِ آسیموف بود که چون چهارم دبستان بودم گذاشتمش کنار و برگشتم سرِ به من بگو چراها و در جهان ریاضیات و نجوم و تاریخ و بدن انسان و فیزیک و اینا، این کتاب بزرگایی که پر از عکس بود. یه جورایی خیلی علاقه داشتم.
بنیاد خیلی خیلی خوب بود. یعنی وقتی داری در نظر میگیری که از تو به عنوان یه تاریخِ گم شده حرف میزنن حسِ بینهایت عجیبی داری و خب، شاید یه روزی اون آیندگان همه این نوشتهها رو بخونن، کی میدونه؟
این ریویو نیست
...more
Terri Jacobson
Prelude to Foundation was written in 1988 by Isaac Asimov as a prequel to his Foundation series. I listened to the audiobook, which was well-produced and read nicely.

The year is 12,020 GE (Galactic Era), and Hari Seldon, mathematician, is giving a paper on the planet Trantor, home planet of the Galactic Empire. He is presenting his theory of psychohistory, a system of equations and analysis that may someday be used to predict human history. The empire wants to get hold of Hari, so he goes into h
...more
Joe
Jan 14, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Asimov wrote hundreds of books, but he is best known for his Foundation series and his stories about robots. The Foundation series chronicles human society far in the future; where we've spread across the galaxy and established colonies on millions of worlds but have forgotten the one we started on. And in the vastness of this human empire, decay has set in and cracks are growing; a galactic dark-age so grand in scope few can even see it's dimensions.

The hero of the series is Hari Seldon; mathem
...more
JonSnow
Apr 08, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Contrary to what seems to be the popular consensus, I actually thoroughly enjoyed this book for what it was. I first read these books out of order. The original trilogy, then the two that followed it. I had never read the robot books, prelude/forward/empire novels. So I have been doing this.

Having already read the original trilogy and two sequels (as well as The Complete Robot, 4 robot novels, 3 empire novels... ), I thoroughly enjoyed Prelude to Foundation. It is certainly NOT a necessary read,
...more
Alejandra
Jan 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Mi papa tiene AÑOS diciéndome que los libros de Isaac Aimov son buenísimos, que me van a encantar, etc... no se porque nunca fui de tomar uno y ponerme a leerlos, ya quiero terminarlos TODOS!

Leí primero el libro de la Fundación y me pareció súper interesante toda la idea de Hari Seldon y la Psicohistoria, pero en vez de ir en orden cronológico de publicación, (a sugerencia de mi papa) inicie a leer este libro, Preludio a la Fundación, donde inicia la historia de Hari Seldon quien en el futuro se
...more
Christopher
Mar 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Neo Marshkga
May 12, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
Prelude to Foundation is the first prequel to the classic Sci-Fi saga, Foundation, written by Isaac Asimov.
This book starts before all the science that explains the Universe of the original Trilogy is fully developed.
We are drawn into a world where knowledge is on a constant state of decay, as the Empire itself.
After thousands of years, the Empire is so big and has extended so much, that several problems started to arise. The Universe is way too big, way too many planets compose the Galaxy, and
...more
Joel Simon
Sep 14, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was my first Foundation book, and my second Asimov book (I, Robot was the first). Even though written later than the original books in the Foundation series, I decided to read it first because it is in chronological order of the story. I will never know whether or not this was the right thing to do and I can see from other readers' comments that many Asimov fans found this book to be disappointing. So in a way it is good that I read this Foundation book first because things will get even be ...more
kellyn
Feb 07, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this when I was about 13 or 14 and loved it. Re-reading it almost ten years later lets me read it with a depth I couldn't have at 13. Asimov was such a genius, writing in the 1940's with a prophetic political and technological imagination. (Granted, this was written in the 1980's as a prequel to the books written in the 40's).
He writes the dialogue with a clinical edge that really makes you feel you're hearing people from an entirely different society speaking. At the same time the descr
...more
50 a year
Mar 25, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
'Prelude to Foundation' by Isaac Asimov is an excellent prequel to Foundation – whereas that book was more like a collection of three stories, this one is a straightforward romp of a novel!

Read my full review on my blog:

http://www.50ayear.com/2016/03/25/11-...
Ahmad Sharabiani
Prelude to Foundation (Foundation: Prequel, #1)
Prelude to Foundation (Foundation (Publication Order) #6), Isaac Asimov
عنوان: سرآغاز بنیاد کهکشانی؛ نویسنده: آیزاک آسیموف؛ مترجم: پیمان اسماعیلیان خامنه؛ تهران، بنیاد مستضعفان و جانبازان، 1372، در 572 ص،
Christian, Kelanth, Scala
Preludio alla Fondazione, in originale "Prelude to Foundation" è un romanzo di fantascienza dello scrittore Isaac Asimov, edita nel 1988. È È uno dei due antefatti al ciclo della Fondazione e narra l'origine della disciplina della psicostoria. Per la prima volta, Asimov racconta la vita di Hari Seldon, l'uomo che ha inventato la psicostoria e l'eroe intellettuale della serie.

Ma prima di parlare di questo libro in particolare, è doveroso parlare del Ciclo delle Fondazioni:
Il Ciclo delle Fondazion
...more
Ajeje Brazov
Finito il sesto dei 7 tasselli del ciclo della Fondazione e sempre più mi convinco che Asimov sia la fantascienza. Insieme ad un altro maestro del genere, Philip K. Dick, unico che secondo me può competere con la maestosità letteraria di Asimov (ovviamente è una mia opinione ristretta a ciò che ho letto finora).
"Trantor... Capitale del Primo Impero Galattico... Sotto Cleon I, conobbe il suo . Stando alle apparenze, era allora all'apice... La popolazione ammontava a 40 miliardi di abitanti... chi
...more
Becky
Oct 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I would have sworn I had never read this one, but now that I have, it seems awfully familiar. Asimov was a genius, but these books aren't perfect. They are still a lot of fun, though. There's a lot more action in this one than I expected, for instance. Go ninja Hari!
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Science Fiction A...: * Foundation Series Book 6: Prelude to Foundation 3 10 Nov 03, 2017 01:47PM  
Sci-fi and Heroic...: Prelude to Foundation by Isaac Asimov 30 42 Feb 15, 2016 11:46AM  
  • Foundation's Triumph (Second Foundation Trilogy #3)
  • Rama Revealed (Rama, #4)
  • Foundation's Fear (Second Foundation Trilogy #1)
  • Utopia (Isaac Asimov's Caliban, #3)
  • Foundation and Chaos (Second Foundation Trilogy #2)
  • The Long Night of Centauri Prime (Babylon 5: Legions of Fire, #1)
  • The Call of Earth (Homecoming, #2)
  • The Gap Into Ruin: This Day All Gods Die (Gap, #5)
  • First Lensman (Lensman, #2)
  • The Ringworld Throne (Ringworld, #3)
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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 one of the most prolific writers 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 o
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More about Isaac Asimov...

Other Books in the Series

Foundation (Chronological Order) (7 books)
  • Forward the Foundation (Foundation: Prequel #2)
  • Foundation (Foundation #1)
  • Foundation and Empire (Foundation #2)
  • Second Foundation (Foundation #3)
  • Foundation's Edge (Foundation #4)
  • Foundation and Earth (Foundation #5)
“I can't bear to hear a human being spoken of with contempt just because of his group identification...It's these respectable people here who create those hooligans out there.” 17 likes
“Mathematicians deal with large numbers sometimes, but never in their income.” 17 likes
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