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La era de cristal / A Cristal Age

3.02  ·  Rating details ·  102 Ratings  ·  27 Reviews
Durante una excursión botánica, el joven Smith se sienta a descansar al borde de un barranco y, de pronto, el suelo cede y él se precipita en el vacío. Al recobrar la conciencia, se descubre en una tierra habitada por una exótica sociedad de pequeñas comunidades matriarcales, que viven en plena armonía con la naturaleza y desconocen completamente el mundo del que Smith pro ...more
Paperback, 221 pages
Published November 28th 2004 by Minotauro (first published 1887)
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While A Crystal Age (1887) follows the classic structure of a nineteenth century utopia (a visitor arrives in an idyllic society), its focus on the protagonist's (Smith's) culture shock makes it a darker, less polemic version. Smith's failure to adapt to the strict mores of the pleasant, but alien, society he lands in, and his unrequited passion for one of the utopians, turns this into a utopian tragedy.

The utopian vision centers on harmonious appreciation of nature (animals works beside humans
Aug 12, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I can add very little to Shel Graves' excellent review except to say that I was completely taken with the author's description of the utopian world he has fallen into. The gentle lifestyle of working with hands, no money, vegetarian diet, holidays based around nature, music and literature was captivating. It was difficult to tell if Smith moved forward or back in time, I kept expecting him to stumble across some relic of previous civilisations. A very interesting read and a tragic if abrupt end.
Mar 21, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dreamy, sci-fi
I listened to this book from Librivox (the reader is very good) and enjoyed the slow pace and the rich descriptions of the strange land the protagonist suddenly finds himself in. But this early utopian (dystopian?) tale may require some patience for modern readers to wade through. The ending was a bit strange... it wrapped up too quickly and too much was left unsaid, after all the previous lengthy ruminations.
Judy Scheibach
If I pretend that this 21-year-old man hadn't fallen in love at first sight and spent the book lusting over a girl he thought was 14, then this is a pretty interesting book.
dated, slow moving narrative. His descriptions of nature are splendid, the mental machinations of the hero illustrative of the time. An interesting discourse on philosophy/religion. I was disappointed by the ending.
Aug 10, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really loved this! So full of wonder & a surprise ending for anyone who hasn`t read this classic yet! ...more
Elizabeth Evans
I honestly did not like this book. Though some descriptions of the world around the main character Smith were good enough that I could envision the view, the rest of the book was slow and not entertaining. I kept trying to get into the story, but was unable to do so as I was intensely bored with Smith’s pursuit of Yoletta and could not wait for the end but wanted to complete it in full.
Catherine Gordon
This is definitely an unusual read. The main character may have woken up in a different world or time and finds himself in a utopian society. He blunders through a series of social errors that he finds immensely embarrassing. He ventures into this society at what appears to be a funeral, but his main focus is a beautiful young girl, who varies in age from his perception between 14-16, which does come across from a modern viewpoint as creepy since he is 21. I found it amusing that he ignores all ...more
Sep 24, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm always impressed with Hudson's eloquent, emotionally inspired, and colorful descriptions, of which this book has many. His language is vivid, but not verbose or superfluous. The story's premise is somewhat unique, wherein, upon awaking after a fall from great heights, a young Englishman named Smith finds himself adrift in a new world. For the first time, he experiences the reality of otherness. Smith perceives his surroundings as a Utopia, or at least we as readers do. He continually thwarts ...more
Sep 25, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I would not recommend this book except to absolute fanatics of speculative fiction or scholars. While it was humorous at times, generally it was poorly written and, well, creepy. The protagonist is *somehow*, after receiving a bump on the head, transported to a distant-future, post-apocalyptic Earth where sexual relations have been radically altered and words have taken on new meanings. He then sells himself into a year's long indentured servitude to pay for a nice new set of clothes so that he ...more
Paul stamper
Mar 20, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A gentle cult of harmonious love.

A tragic, romantic take on human cultural evolution in the best Rip Van Winkle tradition. Our protagonist tumbles headlong into a ravine during a woodland hike and awakens in a bucolic future both strange and pastoral. Discovered by the long lived denizens of a familial commune, he struggles to learn their peaceful ways even though perceived by the gentle inmates as a semi deranged barbarian from environs unknown. As he pursues the love of Yoletta, a young (?) re
Benjamin Chandler
Hudson's prose and world-building are the real stars of this book, a sci-fi utopia/dystopia novel where a young man hibernates into a future where immediate families are everything, homes are permanent temples, mothers are worshipped, and love is only the philia kind. There is no place for eros in this future.

The narrator is something of a nitwit, but the lovely and stylish writing and philosophies presented betray that characterization.

I would have given this book 4 stars, but the ending just
A man is knocked unconscious and wakes up to find everything has changed. Utopian fiction, the civilization might be compared with the Eloi from the Time Machine but i think this story is better written and has a more haunting atmosphere.
There are hints that the civilization might not be as perfect as it appears but then the story ends before you can get any answers. I don't even know whether my ideas about the dark elements of the civilization were actually implied or merely inferred. A frustra
Nov 20, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I was just getting interested when it finished! I spent the first two thirds of the book intensely disliking the protagonist due to his infatuation with a child, then it turns out all is not as it seems. This being cleared up, the rest of the book discribes the society he has found himself absolutely NO clearer detail. How annoying. I persisted to the end but I still didn't enjoy this book.
Mar 06, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I'll never get those hours of my life back....First person narratives where the narrator dies (presumably, the end is woefully unclear ) only work if there is a framing device, say an account he wrote and then an eyewitness bit, this just doesn't hang together. And the premise of this particular utopia is even more unlikely than other contemporary attempts like those of Wells or Morris. It's really not worth wasting your time on.
Nicole West
Apr 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this classic tale of a man transported to a completely different world with a utopian way of life that very greatly differs from that of our own. It became very obvious that a world without pain and anguish is no world at all. There has to be a balance. I was expecting in the end that he would find his way home again. I was not expecting him to accidentally drink poison but it proved the theory that someone who was suffering in the world of utopia would be taken care of through death
charles hudson
Feb 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Downer. To me, I could see a slight double to the Time Machine. The book was a good read though. Am still a little fuzzy about his movement through time. It was obvious that he had went far forward in time. But, as a current day person, it is also interesting as to what the writers of the 1800s forsaw.

6/29/17. Not the expected ending. His other books although follow a similar ending. Green Mansions for one. As a writer, he sort of has a dark side to him.
This was not was the dystopian book I thought it would be. It was in a recognizable future, but for me this was merely a love story.
I was not expecting the ending.
Susan Salmon Frick
This was a stance one! An old science fiction fantasy about waking up in another world! Not sure I liked the ending!
Jason Pym
19th century utopia which feels strangely like an early Star Trek episode - but really too dated to be entertaining.
Robert Barbantini
Weird book written a while back...interesting in that it kind of supposes what we could be like as a "hippie" community in the far away future...
Sabra Wineteer
Aug 09, 2013 is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
Another Margaret Atwood recommendation. I hope I can find it.
Sep 28, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics
Its funny how Hudson's books seem to align with my personal beliefs. Hated the ending but the rest of it was endlessly interesting.
rated it really liked it
Jun 09, 2015
rated it it was amazing
Jan 27, 2013
rated it it was ok
Aug 03, 2016
rated it it was ok
Mar 06, 2013
Ruth Fleak
rated it really liked it
Feb 04, 2017
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William Henry Hudson was an author, naturalist and ornithologist. He was born in the Partido de Quilmes in Buenos Aires Province, Argentina, where he is considered to belong to the national literature as Guillermo Enrique Hudson, the Spanish version of his name. He spent his youth studying the local flora and fauna and observing both natural and human dramas on what was then a lawless frontier, pu ...more
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