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Review of Isaac Asimov Works

 

Isaac Asimov Review

 

  Isaac Asimov was one of the most prolific writers of his age being involved in 450-500 books before his death on April 6th, 1992 from heart and kidney failure, that's an average of 6 books a year for every year of his life, how many books have you written or edited this year? Man am I behind!

  

  Asimov was born in Russia on January 2, 1920 he immigrated to America a few years later in 1923 with his family and grew up in Brooklyn, New York attaining a B.S. in chemistry from Columbia University in 1939 and continued his education receiving his Ph.D. in 1948.

  

  Asimov's storied career began very young when he published his first story, in his school newspaper in 1934 (Little Brothers). His career as an author would continue throughout the entirety of his life.

  

  With such a massive amount of material to choose from it can feel daunting to step into Asimov's world but that is why we are here to give some helpful suggestions on where to begin.

  

  The easiest way to start is with a nice short story, we suggest NightFall. The basic idea for Nightfall came from editor John W. Campbell when he asked Asimov "What would happen if people saw the stars only once every thousand years?" Asimov turned this idea into one of the greatest short stories ever written.

 

  Nightfall takes place on the planet Lagash which has six suns, the story revolves around a team of scientist who are trying to unravel the mystery of why civilization has collapsed in the past and how it relates to the coming eclipse.

  

  The next recommendation for our Journey into the works of Asimov is with his robot novels (I, Robot, The Caves of Steel, and The Naked Sun).

 

I, Robot not Robot Eye...

I, Robot

 

  You know how they say that the book was better than the movie? This goes doubly so for Asimov. If you have seen the Will Smith movie I Robot you would be very surprised at how completely different the book is in both tone and theme. Please erase any memory of that movie you may have and begin with a fresh outlook before reading the Robot novels.

 

  The idea for the robot stories was to tell a tale that was an anti Frankenstein story, up until this time robots were often portrayed as monsters that would turn against us, and Asimov wanted to break that mold.

 

  The first book "I, Robot" is a set of short stories loosely linked together by the character Susan Calvin a robotic psychologist. It begins with the short story "Robbie" a tale of friendship between a nursemaid robot and his young charge Gloria and ends with the short story "The Evitable Conflict" a tale about positronic machines that are given control of the world's economy and how the machines begin to take a broader view of the three laws of robotics.

  

  The second novel "The Caves of Steel" is a detective story revolving around the murder of the Spacer Ambassador Roj Nemennuh Sarton. Elijah Baley a plain clothes detective for the New York city police department is assigned the case but has to partner with a representative from the Spacer community a humanoid robot named R. Daneel Olivaw.

 

  The third novel "The Naked Sun" again finds us following a new murder mystery with plain clothes detective Elijah Baley and R. Daneel Olivaw on the spacer world of Solaria.

 

  Our final recommendation into the works of Asimov is the Foundation trilogy (Foundation, Foundation and Empire, and Second Foundation).

 

A good foundation is what you need

Foundation

 

  What would happen if you set Edward Gibbon's Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire in space? You get Asimov's Foundation Stories. The Foundation novels have not aged as well as some of Asimov's work but we still highly recommend them for the grand scope and tale of the Foundation books.

 

  I read the foundation trilogy for the first time when I was eight years old (I was a very unusual child). This was my first contact with Asimov's writing and I found myself drawn into the universe that he had created.

 

Very young Professor  Very young Professor

 

  The story begins on the planet Trantor and follows Hari Seldon a Psychohistorian in the Galactic Empire. The idea of Foundation is that after 12,000 years of stability, the science of psychohistory has predicted that the Galactic Empire will fall within 500 years, with a new dark ages period that will last after that event for 30,000 years. Hari Seldon cannot stop the fall of the Galactic Empire but he does have a plan that could shorten the time of the dark age from 30,000 years to just 1,000 if they will only listen to him.

 

  The second and third books in the series continue to follow the people of the Foundation and the 1000 year plan laid out by Hari Seldon.

 

  Overall you cannot go wrong reading any of the works of Isaac Asimov, believe me you will be richer for it

 

The various works of Isaac Asimov final verdict 10/10

 

  -Professor

 

 

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