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A Choice of Catastrophes
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A Choice of Catastrophes

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  244 Ratings  ·  26 Reviews
Scientist, author, and Earth-dweller, explores the many potential natural and man-made catastrophes that could change life as we know it, or erase us from the face of the Earth. Natural properties and laws might change at any time, rendering life on this planet--or anywhere in the universe--impossible. But the disasters that are most imminent are in our power to control--t ...more
Hardcover, 377 pages
Published November 17th 1979 by Simon & Schuster (Riverside, NJ) (first published November 1979)
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Florin Constantinescu
Story breakdown

- Isaac Asimov - The Last Trump (short story): 3*
Archangel Gabriel blows his trumpet and it's Dies Irae! All the dead come back to life, and it's quite an interesting situation and a funny read. It doesn't go anywhere in the end, so can't be more than 3*

- Edward Wellen - No Other Gods (short story): 1*
Incomprehensible mumbo jumbo. Some computer decides to kill humans...

- Harlan Ellison - The Wine Has Been Left Open Too Long and the Memory Has Gone Flat (short story): 1*
I never und
...more
Jim Grammond
Jan 02, 2008 rated it really liked it
I read this book for the first time at age 10 (or so). Scared the hell out of me. Re-read it at a later age when I was past my fears of an imminent apocalypse (thank you, Catholic school) and I enjoyed it a great deal.
Andrew
Apr 12, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is an interesting book if a little dry. The premise is that the catastrophe is one of series ranking from first class to fifth - where the first is something that wipes out all of the universe to the fifth which only destroys civilisation but not the human race. Each class then is broken down in to various scenarios which are then discussed and explored. Some are only briefly looked at while others are discussed at great length. It is a mixture of personal opinion (and never let it be said ...more
Curt
Sep 22, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Seriously, fuck mini-black holes.
Christa Maurice
Mar 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A few clunkers, but mostly excellent tales. I first read it in about 1987 and one of the plague stories has stuck with me since then as one of the most interesting and creative stories I have ever read.
Jules Jones
An entertaining themed anthology, published in 1981 but containing stories dating back as far as 1938. Some stories have dated, many are still great reads, all clearly justified their selection at the time. I've been reading this on and off for several months, but got through about half of it last month, so my review of the individual stories is going to be a bit patchy.[return][return]The anthology is set out in sections covering different degrees of catastrophe, from the end of the universe do ...more
Zoltán
Aug 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Great book, lovely piece of literature.
I would make it obligatory for anyone to read it above the ages of 16-18.
Nicely structured, wide topics, everything is explained with relevant scientific knowledge, put into historical perspective and proper estimates have been made for the future (like the prediction of internet as the "global computerized library").
Also, it is really enjoyable to read whatever Asimov wrote... :)
Andrea
Aug 25, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ideas-and-faith
Nel genere, una perla
bebabi34

Isaac Asimov
l'ultima tromba
edward wellen
nessun altro dio
harlan ellison
la botte è rimasta aperta troppo a lungo e la memoria è evaporata
ben bova
stelle, volete nascondermi
Lloyd Biggler jr.
il giorno del giudizio
William Tenn
il custode
clark ashton smith
fenice
harry harrison
via dal fuoco
edmond hamilton
requiem
Larry Niven
nel centro
Fritz Leiber
Un secchio d'aria
chad oliver
il re del formicaio
Ursula Kroeber Le Guin
la nuova atlantide
Arthur Charles Clarke
lezione di storia
raymond zi
...more
Ilya Cherkasov
Mar 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Прекрасная книга!

Азимов, как ни крути, очень крутой популист. В книге разбираются события, последствием которых является гибель человечества.

Автор делит их на пять категорий (от гибели вселенной до эволюции роботов) и каждую друг за дружкой рассматривает с точки зрения предпосылок, вероятности, последствий и причин.

При этом каждой катастрофе даётся научно-популярное объяснение - то есть, если речь идёт о ледниковом периоде, то автор подробно рассматривает явление с исторической точки зрения и н
...more
Ashley Adams
Asimov tackles the apocalyptic truths of the universe via nonfiction. He discusses the catastrophes potentially facing humanity from a variety of perspectives- beginning with those catastrophes that would effect the universe as a whole (entropy, black holes, etc.) continuing to discuss impending doom for Earth specifically (asteroids, earthquakes...), and ending with the downfall of humanity (population, pollution...). The science is a bit outdated now, but the ideas are solid. His attempt to re ...more
Biblioworm
Nov 12, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: english, fiction
Подборка буквально худших образчиков SciFi, на мой взгляд.
Поверив другим отзывам, что в конце поинтереснее, домучил до конца. Но даже последний рассказ, действительно довольно занятный, изложен в общем напыщенном и скучном стиле, как и прочие рассказы.
Основная моя претензия к этим рассказам - тяжеловесный стиль изложения. Идеи, положенные в рассказы, довольно любопытны, но не в таком исполнении.
Tihomir Grebenar
Aug 18, 2012 rated it it was ok
Only the final chapter was really interesting to me, where the author plays with various ideas concerning the future of humanity.
The rest of the book is by now pretty much recycled information (the book was written cca. 1980.).

I would have given it three stars but the authors could not withhold from openly berating certain other authors *and* ideas.
Brielle
Mar 19, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: 16+ years
Shelves: nonfiction
I really enjoyed this book. Asimov explains complicated scientific theory clearly and without resorting to using complicated lingo that only a fellow scientist can understand. This book covers all of the horrible things that could happen to the human race, and how likely they are to happen (and in what time frame). Really puts things into perspective.
Emily
Jun 24, 2008 rated it it was amazing
alot of remakes of this coming out now that the issues asimov approaced in the late 70s are coming to a head. cynics love reading about the end of civilization and optimists love reading about the chance of curbing it.
Alejandra
Feb 24, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
Two or three interesting stories, a lot of Skip to the end! stories.
Brian Schwartz
Aug 25, 2013 rated it liked it

This book was a well edited mix of hard, speculative, and post apocalyptic science fiction. It also had a nice mix of Golden Age pulp writers and modern writers of science fiction.
Frank Taranto
SF shorts about the title.
FranklinTV
I guess it makes an interesting topic for a book. I bought this many years ago and I recall I am yet to read it in full as its a tad depressing!
Lee Belbin
Short stories about catastrophes from various authors, all pretty good as edited by Asimov.
Curtiss
How will the world end; the Good Doctor speculates about various environmental and cosmic catastrophes facing humanity, the environment, and the Earth.
Frankie Mahrle
A Pail of Air by Fritz Leiber is worth the price.
Mars
Mar 05, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A few extremely good stories, a few atrociously bad ones, and a bunch of moderately good ones, but overall the impression was positive.
Janet Jay
Apr 08, 2014 rated it liked it
An interesting premise/whatever, but the best stories i've already read & otherwise ,not remarkable
Irakli Bakuridze
rated it it was amazing
Aug 05, 2016
Doris Bytyqi
rated it it was amazing
Jun 17, 2013
Kaype
rated it liked it
Feb 06, 2016
Sophy
rated it really liked it
Aug 22, 2010
Diniz Bortolotto
rated it liked it
Nov 17, 2013
Letande
rated it liked it
May 29, 2018
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14,894 followers
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
...more
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