Isaac Asimov?

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by GalaxyClass1701, May 28, 2011.

  1. RAMA

    RAMA Admiral Admiral

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    There's nothing that moves in that painting(at least to the visible eye)...but the whole thing looks like there is motion or a sense of depth that's pretty astounding.
     
  2. Allyn Gibson

    Allyn Gibson Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The reading order is today much debated, with some people favoring the publication order and others favoring the internal chronological order.

    For a number of reasons, I don't think that internal chronological order works for first-timers, as certain developments get spoiled way too early.

    The robot novels should be read in order -- Caves, Naked Sun, The Robots of Dawn, Robots and Empire. You can read I, Robot before, in the middle, or after, even though that book takes place very early. The other robot short stories you can read at almost any time; they have little direct bearing on the Foundation mythos.
     
  3. Klaus

    Klaus Vice Admiral Admiral

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    ^^Publication order is definitely the way to go IMHO...
     
  4. timothy

    timothy Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    is there a list for either order?
     
  5. Australis

    Australis Writer Admiral

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    When people say 'Asimov covers", I immediately think of...

    [​IMG]
     
  6. ITL

    ITL Vice Admiral Admiral

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    ^ I had those!
     
  7. timothy

    timothy Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    now just curious has any one read:

    isaac asimov's robot city
    isaac asimov's robot's and aliens
    isaac asimov's robot's in time
     
  8. Allyn Gibson

    Allyn Gibson Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I read these when they came out and liked them. They were fun, but they weren't always true to Asimov's world and they did a number of things that I thought were "end runs" around the Three Laws. Still, I liked the ideas in the books. I prefer the first six books (the Robot City) books to the last six (Robots and Aliens). The characters return in four mystery novels published by iBooks about a decade ago, three by Mark Teidemann and one by Alex Irvine.

    I didn't enjoy this series a great deal. I found them tedious and the writing was juvie-level. However, that turns out to be what the author was going for, and the publisher marketed them otherwise.
     
  9. timothy

    timothy Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    ibooks? is that anything like e books, also looking for foundation's friends.
     
  10. Allyn Gibson

    Allyn Gibson Vice Admiral Admiral

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    No, iBooks was a publishing company of Byron Preiss' before his death. Preiss was the packager behind the Robot City books back in the 80s.

    Foundation's Friends was okay. I'd recommend getting the trade paperback edition -- it has more material than the hardcover and mass market editions. Most of the stories aren't anything great, but Orson Scott Card's "The Originist" is very good.
     
  11. RJDiogenes

    RJDiogenes Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

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    The Caliban trilogy was pretty decent.
     
  12. Allyn Gibson

    Allyn Gibson Vice Admiral Admiral

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    There's a new Susan Calvin novel out in hardcover, I Robot: To Protect, by Mickey Zucker Reichert.

     
  13. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Well, that sounds rather revisionist.
     
  14. Peak

    Peak Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Which should make it fit rather well into the Robot/Empire/Foundation-series. Even Asimov started it after all when he joined everything together..

    Unfortunately, there's not much good to say of the books that have been written by other authors. I do still would like a book set after "Foundation and Earth" which
    killed off this Gaia-nonsense once for all (after all, the Foundation survived, there was after all quotes from Encyclopedia Galactica in the books).
     
  15. Allyn Gibson

    Allyn Gibson Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I disagree. Yes, Greg Benford's Foundation's Fear is not very good (it has some good ideas, but they're not Asimovian ideas or developed in an Asimovian way), but Greg Bear's Foundation and Chaos was solid and David Brin's Foundation's Triumph was easily the best official Foundation novel since Foundation's Edge. (I have to qualify that. Donald Kingsbury's Psychohistorical Crisis is actually better, but it's not an official Foundation novel.)

    Also, Roger MacBride Allen's Caliban trilogy is excellent. There are a few things I quibble with, but the storytelling is good, the characters are well drawn, and the writing is top-notch.

    Then you should read Foundation's Triumph, because that's an idea that Brin develops there. Brin's idea was that if there is a Gaia/Galaxia, then there's no need for an Encyclopedia Galactica. But since there is an Encyclopedia Galactica, then it follows that the Foundation triumphs over both the Second Foundation and Galaxia. That's why Brin quotes from a later edition of the EG than Asimov does. :)
     
  16. Peak

    Peak Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    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.. :p)

    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.
     
  17. Hound of UIster

    Hound of UIster Vice Admiral Admiral

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    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.
     
  18. Owain Taggart

    Owain Taggart Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    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.
     
  19. RJDiogenes

    RJDiogenes Idealistic Cynic and Canon Champion Premium Member

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    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. :rommie:
     
  20. stonester1

    stonester1 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    If you want to claim true literacy in science fiction literature, Asimov is an essential read.