Listening is an absolutely critical life skill. Hearing the stories of others is one of its many rewards.
I've read a lot of "first contact" books, most written well after this one. I don't know that there are any better ones out there, though Clarke himself wrote two other good ones: Childhood's End and Rendezvous with Rama. Both of those are great and feel different than 2001. I still love Solaris, Ender's Game, and War of the Worlds. And one of my recent favorites was Embassytown by China Mieville. But honestly, I think this book would be a great one to compare and contrast with my favorite SF read of 2013, Roadside Picnic.
Yes it was. The chapters are short, each one has a specific focus that is different from the last, and Clarke is smart enough to skip past uninteresting events. It is a very tight, well-written novel!
I read this decades ago and was surprised at how well it holds up. Despite the fact that this book was written before the first moon landing, a lot of the scientific speculation still feels relevant. Actually, it may be MORE relevant now than it was then. (Speculation about AI for instance.)
Like so many readers, I wanted to read this book, first of all, because I am a fan of Arthur C. Clarke and was left with too many questions after the Kubrick's film. I think it is great that those two are a bit different, and both complement each other.
Even though everybody is familiar with this iconic film but Clarke still manages to develop a remarkably involving story, raising the questions that are still relevant today: are we alone in this universe? How did the humans came into existence? Are there higher powers? What is the next step of our evolution?
There are some similarities between 2001 and 'Childhood's end', as both deal with similar questions, in their own way.
The narrator does a very good job. The author's intro to this audio-book was a pleasant surprise!
I was hesitant at first. I've seen the movie three times and have never been able to make much sense of the plot or what they were trying to say. But, I read a lot of other reviews and decided to spend the credit.
I'm glad I did.
The book is very, very good. The movie and the book follow the same basic plot line, but the book is able to explain everything in so much more detail. It's a great story and a book you will find difficult to 'put down' (or rather, turn off). The narrator is also fantastic. "HAL" sounds exactly like he should and the main character has enough depth to make you envision yourself in his situation.
Arthur C. Clarke was a visionary, a man ahead of his time. I enjoyed listening to all the different 'gadgets' he thought up for the future, and comparing them to what we actually have now, in 2016. In some places he was very on the mark, in other places he fell a bit short, but considering the book was written in the late 1960's, it's pretty amazing.
Overall, the book should make you think. We tend to be so caught up in our daily existence, we don't take the time to think about the stars, the planets, the Universe or the spirituality of it all. We should.
The movie was so mysterious but the book really spoon-feeds the plot to you. Watch the movie many times before reading and try to figure it out!