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Old December 30 2011, 04:20 AM   #136
Peak
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Re: Isaac Asimov?

I was really dissappointed in the first of the "Second Foundation Trilogy". The other two books were better (and I noticed that passage you quoted there), but I feel like "Foundation and Chaos" and "Foundation's Triumph" had to spend a lot of time to try to fix the problems from the first book (wormholes, really???).

But, it was a long time I read these, and I recently begun to go through the Robot/Empire/Foundation-books again (are there a good shorter name for this series), so we have to see if I change my mind.

"Robots in Time" are awful, though. Haven't read the Caliban trilogy yet. The "Robot City"-stuff and the "spinoffs" are okay-ish. Better than "Robots in Time", but that doesn't say much.. )

Some stories in "Foundation's Friends" are quite good, actually, though.

Still want to see a book that takes place after "Foundation and Earth", though. I would recommend an eventual merging of the first and second foundation.
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Old December 30 2011, 04:49 AM   #137
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Re: Isaac Asimov?

I think Foundation's Triumph had some rather nice observations about Asimov's future history. The comparisons between the Empire and the Chinese dynasties was also a nice touch and the observation that the Seldon plan would ultimately triumph was a good observation on the part of the writers. The chaos fever idea and how it caused instability throughout civilization I thought was a load of rubbish as was the robots potentially committing mass genocide on the rest of galaxy to secure a human dominant universe.
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Old December 30 2011, 08:22 AM   #138
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Re: Isaac Asimov?

Peak wrote: View Post
I was really dissappointed in the first of the "Second Foundation Trilogy". The other two books were better (and I noticed that passage you quoted there), but I feel like "Foundation and Chaos" and "Foundation's Triumph" had to spend a lot of time to try to fix the problems from the first book (wormholes, really???).
If you're disappointed with those, I highly recommend reading Psychohistorical Crisis by Donald Kingsbury. Sadly, it's not a licensed book, so all place names and characters have been changed, but all in all, I think it's more in spirit with the rest of Asimov's work than the actual Second Foundation. It was released around the same time as the Second Foundation trilogy, so I'm guessing that's why it didn't get the blessing of the estate, but to me it absolutely captured what made Asimov great.
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Old December 30 2011, 10:41 AM   #139
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Re: Isaac Asimov?

Psychohistorical Crisis was great. Definitely a novel I need to re-read at some point.

The three books of the Second Trilogy all blur together for me at this point, but it was an ill-advised project. They should have just created their own universe to develop their ideas in; in terms of being respectful to the source material, it was disastrous.

I'd be happy to write Foundation And Galaxia, though. Asimov felt he had written himself into a corner, but I know a very Asimovian way out of it.
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Old December 30 2011, 11:31 AM   #140
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Re: Isaac Asimov?

If you want to claim true literacy in science fiction literature, Asimov is an essential read.
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Old December 30 2011, 11:54 AM   #141
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Re: Isaac Asimov?

Peak wrote: View Post
I was really dissappointed in the first of the "Second Foundation Trilogy". The other two books were better (and I noticed that passage you quoted there), but I feel like "Foundation and Chaos" and "Foundation's Triumph" had to spend a lot of time to try to fix the problems from the first book (wormholes, really???).
[...]
Still want to see a book that takes place after "Foundation and Earth", though. I would recommend an eventual merging of the first and second foundation.
You're looking for Psychohistorical Crisis by Donald Kingsbury.

It takes place after the second galactic empire came into being, dealing with a crisis that is both a logical consequence of psychohistory and its achilles' heel, and you won't find any wormholes (or robots) in the book.

PS - I see the recommendation has already been made. Twice!
Well, now it's 3 times.

Last edited by Edit_XYZ; December 30 2011 at 12:05 PM.
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Old December 30 2011, 04:30 PM   #142
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Re: Isaac Asimov?

By complete coincidence, I am reading Psychohistorical Crisis right now, and it is magnificent. Takes the Foundation concept more seriously than Asimov himself ever did, I think. (For Asimov, it was never anything more than a premise for a puzzle story.)

The only thing I don't like is some of Kingsbury's substitutions: Lakgan for Kalgan? Really?
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Old December 30 2011, 08:05 PM   #143
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Re: Isaac Asimov?

Yeah, some of the name changes are a little odd and sometimes they're not so obvious as to who or what they are. I think it would have made a better official story than the second trilogy. The creation of the personal familiar device is very Asimovian and feels like something he would have come up with himself.
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Old December 30 2011, 08:41 PM   #144
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Re: Isaac Asimov?

Steve Mollmann wrote: View Post
By complete coincidence, I am reading Psychohistorical Crisis right now, and it is magnificent. Takes the Foundation concept more seriously than Asimov himself ever did, I think. (For Asimov, it was never anything more than a premise for a puzzle story.)

The only thing I don't like is some of Kingsbury's substitutions: Lakgan for Kalgan? Really?
Very cool I just picked it up on my nc looking forward to it.
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Old January 8 2012, 05:54 PM   #145
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Re: Isaac Asimov?

Over the last couple of days, I read "The End of Eternity" - it's a very interesting story and has a far more em.. human (?) dynamic than a lot of his work.
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Old January 9 2012, 05:38 AM   #146
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Re: Isaac Asimov?

JoeZhang wrote: View Post
Over the last couple of days, I read "The End of Eternity" - it's a very interesting story and has a far more em.. human (?) dynamic than a lot of his work.
Yeah, that's one of my favorite Asimovs. Have you read The God Themselves? It's another one that has some scale, but very different ideas, and more grounded characters than we often get.
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Old January 9 2012, 01:32 PM   #147
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Re: Isaac Asimov?

^As I recall, The Gods Themselves was written partly in response to the criticisms that Asimov couldn't write about relationships and sex.
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Old January 9 2012, 08:49 PM   #148
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Re: Isaac Asimov?

Christopher wrote: View Post
^As I recall, The Gods Themselves was written partly in response to the criticisms that Asimov couldn't write about relationships and sex.
That is indeed what he claimed, yes. He also said that of all his science fiction novels, The Gods Themselves was his favorite. This is probably why.
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Old January 14 2012, 05:21 AM   #149
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Re: Isaac Asimov?

Love love The End of Eternity!!! That one is my favorite, too. I had missed a few pages in this thread and I wondered if anyone had talked about it.

Sweet. Have to catch up now!
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Old January 14 2012, 06:15 AM   #150
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Re: Isaac Asimov?

my science fiction book club is now reading Foundation.
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