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Asimov's Mysteries

3.88  ·  Rating details ·  1,242 Ratings  ·  84 Reviews

THE SINGING BELL—An intergalactic criminal steals treasured, musical lunar artifacts.

THE TALKING STONE—A spaceship crew is planning on some illegal uranium mining with the help of on intelligent creature mode of rock.

WHAT'S IN A NAME?—Everything. Especially when twin librarians ore involved in a murder.

Mass Market Paperback, 252 pages
Published July 1969 by Dell Publishing Co. (first published 1968)
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Arun Divakar
Sep 29, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A very recent review on this site by Nandakishore on a work by Agatha Christie explains the dilemma in trying to review mysteries. It is something like trying to explain how an ingenious magic trick works for once the explanation is done, the audience feels oh, so was that just it ? and countless hours of practice on the magician's part goes to waste in a breath. This is also the reason why I love mysteries for you never know what awaits you at the end of the tale. Asimov in this slim volume o ...more
Apr 06, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Asimov enjoyed showing off his versatility, and even though he's best known for his SF and popular science, he could do other things too. In particular, he was surprisingly competent at mysteries. Maybe he should have written more of them.

This book collects together his best mystery short stories, the greater part of which have an SF theme. They often hinge on a clever piece of word-play. Asimov loved jeux de mots, and had a tendency to be a little too silly with them, but here he gets it right;
Feb 18, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: challenge-2016
Oh I enjoyed it a lot! Asimov is really good, the mysteries are a lot of fun, and some are even very impressive. There's murders and regular mysteries. And I ended up liking Urth quite a lot. But as far as Asimov stories go, I prefer his Robot stories.
Sep 10, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Typical Asimov, which is only a good thing.
May 18, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short-stories, sf
This collection ends with a few really good stories but quite a few are mediocre which drags down my rating of this book.

"Orbituary" and "The Billiard Ball" are the stand out stories in my opinion. Anyone who says Asimov can't write should give these a go and it might change their mind.

Of the stories contained herein, only a few are of the kind that you, as the reader, try to guess "who done it" before it's revealed at the end. Doing so will require quite a deep knowledge of scientific and ast
Oct 22, 2016 rated it it was ok
There's no standout stories in this collection from Asimov. Some of the story settings are interesting but the mystery/crime is underwhelming.

If I had to pick a favourite, it'd be 'Marooned Off Vesta' & 'Anniversary'. They are connected and were the most fun read of the collection.
Jack Tyler
Apr 04, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is an anthology of thirteen mysteries with a science-fiction theme first published in 1968 by one of the giants of the 20th Century. Here's what I thought of it: When my living quarters were flooded in the El Nino event of the early 1970s, pretty much everything on the floor or on bottom shelves was damaged beyond recognition or destroyed outright. I went to the effort to salvage two books. This was one of them.

It's still out there, and still an entertaining read. First, let me excerpt from
This is a very good mix of thirteen crime and mystery stories (excepting one or two) by Mr. Asimov, some written during the earliest stages of his writing career. At times it felt like reading Sherlock Holmes, albeit based in a science-fictional scenario. A few scientific descriptions (although not too technical), which are usually expressed within dialogues, could tend to go beyond the grasp of understanding with an under-average, un-scientific mind. All the stories are wonderful, although some ...more
Jun 22, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
This short story collection was a mixed bag, and not up to Asimov's usual standards. But there were a few gems near the end, especially Obituary.

The Singing Bell - 2/5. Meh. Decent setup, banal ending.

The Talking Stone - 3/5. Hmm, not bad I guess. Very marginal 3.

What's in a Name? - 3/5. Well executed but the twist was too simplistic.

The Dying Night - 3/5. Again, a bit too obvious.

Pâté de Foie Gras - 4/5. Ah, finally. Fabulous twist, even if there was a bit too much jargon thrown in.

The Dust of
Benjamin Thomas
I always like it when I find a book that mixes two of my favorite genres, in this case science fiction and mystery. This volume contains 14 short stories, all by the science fiction master, Isaac Asimov, and all previously published in magazines of the day such as “Astounding Science Fiction”, “The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction”, “Amazing Stories” “The Saint Detective Magazine” and even “Scientific American”.

While there is indeed a mystery element to all of these stories, I would say
Oct 03, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
Asimov was one of those writers I started as a tween, and amongst others built my love for reading, and always carries much affection in my heart as a result.

He was always writing mysteries, it forms the bulk of his work, whatever some idiot reviewers on here will pretend, both straight and sci-fi, most of his robot stories were mysteries after all. These are a collection of his sci fi mystery shorts, none robot related.

All accessible, enough science to satisfy the hardcore, but always explaine
Jul 19, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cifi, classics, 2016, relatos
Aunque todos estos relatos están marcados por el misterio, los delitos y demás tintes detectivescos, me ha parecido una recopilación un tanto irregular. He disfrutado muchísimo con algunos (el que más, «Nota necrológica») y con otros me he quedado a cuadros de lo poco que entendía (maldita Oca). Pero en general me han gustado mucho, sobre todo por los aportes del propio Asimov al principio o al final de cada relato. Todo lo que puedo decir es: «¡Vaya, es estupendo ser lectora de ciencia ficción! ...more
The other John
Jun 21, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf, crime, mystery
This one's a nice collection of science fiction mysteries, written by Dr. Isaac Asimov. Well, mostly. One tale, "Marooned Off Vesta", isn't a mystery tale, but rather it's included because its sequel, "Anniversary", is one. Another tale, "A Loint of Paw", isn't a mystery either--it's a courtroom drama that is simply a set up for a pun. But since it's only two pages long, I don't feel cheated. All in all, this book is good, classic science fiction, well worth reading.
Steven Peterson
Isaac Asimov was a fine science fiction writer and an author of many popular books on science and other subjects. Here, he tries his hand on science fiction mysteries. The end result is positive. He teases the reader. He is not so good at developing living and breathing characters. But he has provocative ideas. Worth a read for those who enjoy sci-fi mystery.
Jul 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Buenos relatos policíacos, al más puro estilo Asimov. Algunos acusan el paso del tiempo en sus propuestas futuristas, pero no por eso dejan de ser entretenidos. En muchos casos bastaría cambiar el nombre de la tecnología sin tener que retocar el desarrollo de la historia. Muy contento con esta recopilación del autor.
Jan 08, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Asimov always does such good mysteries. The clues and endings are always very scientific and well set up.
J.R.D. Skinner
Fun light read if you're looking for some science-heavy mystery and don't mind some aging notions.
Kat Hagedorn

A Goodreads friend reviewed this, and it immediately piqued my interest because it is sci-fi and it is mystery and the two together are really hard to do. Up to this point, I had only read Larry Niven's attempts at this (best compilation of these: The Long Arm of Gil Hamilton) and was quite satisfied with his results. I figured it was time to try another sci-fi grand master and see what I got.

1. Asimov is not Niven. He did not write at the same time, and while they both
Jul 05, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dad-s-books
The thing I liked most about this book was Asimov's forewords and afterwords. His frank self-analysis works out to be a form of humility. His simple delight in getting to write science fiction and to solve problems is charming and infectious.

The premise is a good one: science is all about mystery, so why hasn't science fiction embraced mystery as a (sub)genre? It seems like possibilities would be endless.

As mysteries, these are strange. They are much less "who done it?" as "how was it done?" The
Elizabeth McDonald
I had read some of the fourteen stories in this collection previously, but that did not detract from my enjoyment of them. The mysteries are not as engrossing as some by other authors, for instead of focusing on personality, Asimov sets up his mysteries as puzzles, a la Encyclopedia Brown (though not anywhere near as contrived or cutesy, thank God). These all have a strong scientific bent. In several, for example, the crime is solved by some quirk of the planet the suspect has recently been on - ...more
William March
Dec 19, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In the introduction to this collections of short stories, Asimov describes the difficulties of combining science fiction and mystery genres. He goes on to explain the method he goes about resolving the issues and, for the most part, succeeds in creating an acceptable literary form.

There are 13 stories in this collection that were gathered from various publications. All stories contain a foreword or afterword that offer amusing insights into the development of the stories or describe shortcoming
Michael Bernstein
Dec 11, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed

Thirteen short science-fiction mysteries by the acclaimed science writer are presented together with commentary.

Michael's review:

I think I first read a copy of this collection (it even had this same cover) around the age of 12 or so (so ca. 1982), after finding it on my mother's bookshelf. It is a testament to the quality of the writing and how tightly the plot hangs together (subsequent scientific advances aside) that some 30 years later I remembered the ending "reveal" of each story upon

Saurabh Sharma
This was my first encounter with Asimov's writing. Isaac Asimov is considered to be a master in Science Fiction story telling, in this book he combines Science fiction with mystery and in my opinion does it commendably.

'Asimov's Mysteries' is a collection of 13 short stories written by Isaac Asimov which are a blend of the two genres- Sci-Fi and Mystery. Almost all the stories in the collection are cleverly plotted and tease the reader, however, the doze of mystery and science vary in each. The
Edith Wasco
Dec 12, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Tenía ganas de releer al maestro y soy fan de sus cuentos cortos, así que esta antología me cayó de perlas. Ya conocía cada uno de los once relatos que se incluyen, pero es magnífico explorarlos nuevamente, siempre se les encuentran nuevos aspectos interesantes. Cuando compré y decidí leer esta antología no me había percatado que seguía un criterio de selección temática: los relatos policíacos de Asimov, así que lo tomé con sorpresa y expectación.

Si bien todos los relatos son buenos o muy bueno
This collection contains: The Singing Bell; The Talking Stone; What's in a Name; The Dying Night; Pate de Fois Gras; The Dust of Death; A Loint of Paw; I'm in Marsport Without Hilda; Marooned Off Vesta; Anniversary; Obituary; Star Light; The Key; and The Billiard Ball.

In some ways the first short story in this collection, The Singing Bell,is the best. That's because some thought has gone into the plot to make the murderer cunning. Or maybe I just like the style? It reminds me of Nightfall and Ot
Jan 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who is new to Science Fiction
Recommended to Sawako by: Carol GF
WOW! I totally recommend this book to anyone who likes mystery and new to Science Fiction.

(view spoiler)
Jun 02, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Prisonnier de son embonpoint et ennemi juré des voyages, le célèbre Dr
Urth, extraterrologiste émérite, ne s'est jamais éloigné de son
domicile. Cependant, ce savant en pantoufles possède une connaissance si
parfaite des planètes étrangères et de leurs habitants que c'est à lui
que la police a le plus souvent recours pour démasquer les criminels
intergalactiques. Ainsi, pour notre plus grande joie, assistons-nous au
mariage heureux de la science-fiction et de l'intrigue policière. Du
crime parfa
I like mysteries, I like science fiction, and I have always had a soft spot for Asimov, since he was one of the authors whose work my mother checked out of the adult section for me, when I was about nine or ten. (Yes, I know I only learned to read at seven. I worked up fast.)

In any case, Asimov's mysteries are fairly easy to guess. It kind of reminds me of one of the characters of one of the stories from this volume, who is really obvious with his puns. Asimov's mysteries were quite obvious. The
Jan 14, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
Oh, this is simply classic Asimov, albeit Asimov with a bit of a twist, attempting to bridge the perceived gap between SF and mystery.

His writing feels a little more dated now than it did when I first discovered Dr Asimov, both in terms of style and scientific accuracy, but if I am reminded of one thing from reading this volume it's that he was always able to tell a good tale that carries the reader easily from start till end - it's still not that commonplace to find an author that is so easy to
Mark Oppenlander
Asimov continues his love affair with the intersection of mystery and science fiction in this collection of 13 short stories. These tales range from suspenseful ("The Singing Bell," "The Key") to humorous ("Pate de Foie Gras," "A Loint of Paw") to dark and brooding ("Obituary," "Star Light") making this a book with a little something for everyone. Several of the stories involve the strange pseudo-detective character Dr. Wendell Urth.

Scientifically, the stories deal with everything from alternate
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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
More about Isaac Asimov...