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Expedition to Earth

3.92  ·  Rating details ·  2,730 Ratings  ·  62 Reviews
There are many ways to recapture the sheer fun that science fiction was back when it wasn't even a bit respectable and the idea that Arthur C. Clarke would one day be Sir Arthur was more or less inconceivable. One of the best ways is to go back to a classic short story collection like this, with its bitterly ironic title story of archaeology and its misunderstandings--the ...more
Mass Market Paperback, 169 pages
Published March 12th 1978 by Ballantine Books (MD) (first published December 1st 1953)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Charles
A collection of some of Clarke's older SF stories, including "The Sentinel," which is the story that set the tone for 2001. All these stories are pretty good, although not the best that Clarke wrote. A few have twists that are easy to see coming, but overall I enjoyed them quite a lot.
Tim
I don't think there's a better book by Arthur C. Clarke than this. These stories are taut, memorable, moving, full of the pain of one form or another of exile. Sure, there are one or two amusing throwaways, but has there ever been a more poignant story of homesickness than "If I Forget Thee, Oh Earth", or a more bleakly ironic memorial to human folly than the closing paragraphs of the title story? If you, like I, have found much of Arthur C. Clarke's late work less than inspiring, read these ear ...more
Geoffrey
It’s good to read some of the works of the forefathers of science fiction. It’s been decades since I’ve read any Clarke and it’s like visiting an old friend. These are 11 tales originally published between 1949 and 1953 and are, of course, of varying quality individually. Combined, they’re fascinating in style and content and a joy to read.
Most of these stories aren’t about laser guns or space battles – although I enjoy that kind of science fiction – but about the human condition.
Second Dawn – T
...more
Bryan
Jul 03, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great Collection of Short Stories: There are 11 short stories in this collection and all of them are truly exceptional but 3 really stand out. The first of course is "Sentinel" which is the basis for the movie and eventually the book, "2001" "Breaking Strain" is a great book discussing the moral implications of two men trapped alone in a space ship when it is quite obvious that if there was only one of them they could survive. With interesting commentary on how people live under pressure and wha ...more
Mohsen M.B
Jul 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
اين كتاب فوق العاده است. توجه خاص سي كلارك به بشريت در داستان هاش قابل ستايشه .
اين تنها يك كتاب نيست، دريچه اي است به دنياهاي ناديده. :)
بسيار لذت بردم از مطالعه اين كتاب اميدوارم شما هم از مطالعه اون لذت ببريد.
Think outside the box!
Nariman
Jul 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
داستان کوتاه «درس تاریخ» برایم بدل به یکی از ماندگارترین داستانهای کوتاه کلارک شد. اولین داستانی که چنان اشتیاقی در من ایجاد کرد که دست به ترجمهاش ببرم.
ترجمهٔ «آه، زمین اگر فراموشت کنم» رو در آکادمی فانتزی خوندم، مثل «شش هزار سال نوری تا زمین» و چه ترجمههای معرکهای هم دارند.
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Shannon
This is a collection of short stories originally published in the science fiction pulps magazines that were so popular in the 50s and 60s. Some of my favorite classic science fiction comes originally from these magazines, and most of it takes the form of short stories. I think the length requirements forced a sparseness that fueled the imagination of the readers that is often lacking in today’s epic tomes full of adjectives, run-on sentences and sparkly vampires.

There are eleven short stories in
...more
Nuno Magalhães
Aug 17, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, scifi
Está aqui um excelente livro contendo uma selecção de 11 contos muito interessantes saídos do génio de Arthur C. Clarke. Trata-se dos primeiros contos escritos por Clarke, em 1954, que nos permitem apreciar a genialidade e a capacidade de visão que este autor sempre demonstrou nas suas obras. Todas as narrativas mantêm o estilo de Clarke, na medida em que se coloca sempre uma grande ênfase na tecnologia e nos aspectos científicos, não descurando no entanto a personalidade associada a personagens ...more
Tobias Taylor
BREAKING STRAIN 2/5 - I'm harsh... even to Clarke, that's all there is to say.

'IF I FORGET THEE, OH EARTH...' 3/5 - Mooching, but soulful.

BREAKING STRAIN 4\5 - This was such a fun little space story. It was so good I was there, watching, just outside the airlock.

"News that is sufficiently bad somehow carries its own guarantee of truth. Only good reports need confirmation."

EXPEDITION TO EARTH 3/5 - Classic Arthur C. Clarke.

SUPERIORITY 3/5 - A fun theoretical jaunt.

NEMESIS 4/5 - Human nature playe
...more
Batsap
Eleven beautifully crafted short stories. Each story is neat and tidy, sometimes ending with a gentle twist and other times with a message, but each one had a deeper layer of meaning that lingered after I had read the story. The story that stood out to me the most was 'Breaking Strain', in which one astronaut has to sacrifice himself in order to allow the other to survive the journey, as there isn't enough oxygen left for two people. This book should be given to anyone who thinks that science-fi ...more
Richard
Dec 05, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have now read eleven works of fiction by Arthur C. Clarke, but the tenth was a decade ago, so I wasn't sure how much I'd enjoy this, his first collection of short stories, released in 1953. Often, science fiction does not age well. I was pleasantly surprised. Of course, it contains one of my favorite Clarke stories, "Second Dawn," about the effect of a civilization having no fingers, as well as two of his most famous stories, "If I Forget Thee, O Earth" and "The Sentinel," the latter the basis ...more
Felix Dance
Nov 19, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is true Clarke! Here Clarke is at his early best. This collection of short stories from the 1940s, which I picked up in Pokhara as a bargaining chip for Dawkin’s latest book, is written with a passion rarely seen from Clarke. His ideas are no grander than his others, and the stories are driven from the situation rather than the usual twist at the end, but in almost every story my spine tingled from the awesome perspective. One story involves two astronauts deciding who should die so the oth ...more
Paul
Dec 13, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A look into the early works of one of Science Fiction Maestros.
Eleven short stories ranging from completely alien races to not-that-far-off-in-the-future tales. As well as the pre-cursor tale "The Sentinel" which would later be expanded upon to become his 2001 masterpiece.
Although I'd read this over 30 years ago, it still felt fresh reading it these past few days. I was surprised at how much I actually remembered or what came back to me while I was reading. Also surprising... though maybe not, s
...more
shuji
Nov 09, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Quaint short stories by Arthur C. Clarke that can be amusing due to its dated ideas, but are nonetheless interesting and imaginative. The writing style is by no means exceptional, but Mr. Clarke's ideas and thoughts - especially given the time period he wrote this (published 1953) - deserve tremendous credit and foresight. One of my favorite descriptions were the visuals experienced while on the moon. It is quite exceptional to think of his imagination and tremendous scientific knowledge at a ti ...more
Julien M.
An interesting collection of short stories. I liked reading all of them but only Breaking Strain really stood out from the rest, for me that is. I also thought of a better outcome to that story, adding only one more 'twist'. Anyway, I guess that's what the reader can do with literature after it's been read, besides appreciating it for what it is and, of course, reading it again.

Except the short story History Lesson, which is also part of this collection, and which I read out of boredom last year
...more
Felipe Guerrero
Sep 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Primer libro que leo de Arthur C. Clarke y la verdad es que me fascinó.

Este libro en particular es una recopilación de relatos con temas variados pero todos son buenisimos, algunos llegan a ser un poco escalofriantes y otros simplemente son desconcertantes pero todos escritos con gran imaginación, simplemente geniales.

Gran, gran libro y un excelente viaje por la imaginación de este gran autor de ciencia ficcion.
Rob
Sep 15, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, short-stories
Some of these stories are brilliantly written, most of them in fact. Clarke's at his best when he confronts the edgy, semi-philosophical territory of space pioneers. Clarke is pushing back the frontiers from his desk. If some of these ideas seem a trifle over-familiar, take a look at the publication date. 1954.
I'm fairly sure the reserves of imagination that this book required to write are phenomenal, and I wish I could fully appreciate it.

He loses his way slightly with some of the more camp tal
...more
D.M.
Jun 22, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Rather enjoyable, simple and effective story telling. Interesting to read ideas before their time, Arthur C. Clarke will forever be one of my favourite authors.





My star rating systems
5* - Brilliant, instant classic
4* - absolutely loved it, highly enjoyable.
3* - This isn't a negative rating, I do like the story, but wasn't epically fantastic.
2* I didn't like it at all.
1* - I absolutely hated it!
Chris
May 17, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A collection of 11 stories from the mid-1950s focusing on cold war themes through a progressive moral compass. Nuclear annihilation, the military industrial complex, and the results of war are all represented. Reading the book some 60 years after its publication is a bit disappointing. Although a true classic, the plots and themes have been more strongly fleshed out and given better twists in recent years.
Jeroen Delcour
A collection of (sometimes very) short stories that I found to be hit-and-miss. Some were thought-provoking and/or exciting, but others were short and mildly entertaining but seemed to end a little abruptly. Worth it if you happen to find it in a second-hand bookstore and are feeling like some light reading.
Justin
Jun 07, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Like most collections of short stories, some were good and some weren't. Overall, very imaginative and thought provoking stories. Clarke's work is so timeless that while reading this book you forget it was published over 50 years ago. Clarke wasn't the world's best writer, but he makes up for it with superior creativity and real scientific knowledge. A must read for any classic sci-fi fan.
Sesho Maru
There were two really good stories in this collection and the rest were a bit middling. It's more of a time capsule of what SF used to be like with its musings on Martians and obsession with all things atomic, but a fun read nonetheless
Jose Miguel Gonzalez
He vuelto a caer en la tentación de leerme esta recopilación de relatos y los he disfrutado de verdad. Y ciertametne, me emocioné de nuevo con El Centinela, años después, me vuelvo a dar cuenta de que fue la semilla de una gran obra. Posiblemente, me la vuelva a leer en estos meses.
Paolo
Jan 19, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
A great collection of short stories that are guaranteed to blow your mind with extraordinary conceptual visions of technologies, species, cultures, wars and more. A must read for any Arthur C Clarke fans and anyone interested in science, philosophy, ethics or psychology.
Emily
Apr 07, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
fascinating! A great series of short stories that dwell both on the past, present, and future leading the reader on to simple journeys that turned into an enthralling tale that makes the reader believe it could be real.
Víctor Gutiérrez
Es un libro que contiene diversos cuentos de ciencia ficción. Y aunque Clarke es de los mejores escritores de ciencia ficción que ha habido, la verdad es que es este libro no es la gran cosa. Si trae uno dos o tres buenos cuentos pero los demás si son desechables.
Scott Jasper
Nov 23, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a really interesting book with 11 different short stories. The fact that it was published in December of 1953 makes it REALLY amazing. I have an original book that I bought for $3 at a great book store in Placerville, CA (picture is different).
Josh
Jul 28, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: vintage-sci-fi
This was my first exposure to Arthur C. Clarke (aside from watching 2001) and it is a great collection of unusual and sometimes a bit whimsical short stories. Definitely a good place to start with Clarke.
Jim
This collection of short stories is a mixed bag. For me, Clarke is a revisit to the days of my youth when he was one of my favorite authors and SciFi was my genre of choice. Much of the science is dated but that won't stem your enjoyment if you are a Clarke fan.
João
Despite a few 5/5 stories, there are some concepts that bother me too much, mainly when Clarke is relying on an evolutionary ladder model with humans popping up independently all over the universe in one of the short stories.
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Goodreads Librari...: Another edition to add 7 189 Feb 05, 2017 02:13PM  
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Arthur C. Clarke was one of the most important and influential figures in 20th century science fiction. He spent the first half of his life in England, where he served in World War Two as a radar operator, before emigrating to Ceylon in 1956. He is best known for the novel and movie 2001: A Space Odyssey, which he co-created with the assistance of Stanley Kubrick.

Clarke was a graduate of King's Co
...more
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“Those wanderers must have looked on Earth, circling safely in the narrow zone between fire and ice, and must have guessed that it was the favourite of the Sun's children.” 8 likes
“News that is sufficiently bad somehow carries its own guarantee of truth. Only good reports need confirmation.” 0 likes
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