Wow, I've never read this story before and it was the first time I've finished a long story of Clarke's. What great stuff!
Yes, the narrator is rather dry and has a tempo that can be boring on a long drive but it worked well enough.
A great hard sci-fi novel. Probably Clarke's best. Clarke really makes the discovery and exploration of an alien spacecraft very believable by applying his scientific knowledge to the very readable prose.
The narration, however, is a huge drawback. I've listened to dozens of audiobooks and I've never been so turned off by a narrator as I was while listening to this book. The reading is very halted and and distracting. Very weird accents at the end of sentences, almost like English is second language to the narrator and he never quite figured out the correct inflections to use.
Skip this audiobook and pick up the the real book.
It's hard to beat the imagination of Authur C. Clarke. This book is a cliff hanger from start to finish. There are action sequences that keep you turning pages, but mostly it's just the pure wonder of what's coming next in the fantastic discovery of Rama.
I've been wanting to read this book for ages and was so glad to see it finally come out on audible. The story was good and interesting, but it was very hard to continue to listen to it because the reader was so horrible. Slow and monotone to the point I wondered if it was a machine reading the story.
Please Audible Frontiers, do not ever use this reader again. You did a great disservice to an award winning classic. It should have been 5 stars.
I focus mainly on History, Endurance Sports and Science/Speculative Fiction books.
It is just a fantastic story, well plotted with interesting characters and concepts.
The whole notion of a spaceship planet, may seem trite now but this was probably the original idea and it is compelling.
At times Peter seemed a bit robotic but honestly I thought he did a great job, I would listen to other books by him with no reservations.
No too long...I typically listen to books in my car and at the gym.
Clarke is a great, great writer. Don't miss the opportunity to listen to this classic!
After the discovery of a strange object, Rama, making its way through the solar system, the crew of Endeavour are ordered to dock and explore it. The crew encounter a number suprises as they make their way through Rama's massive interior. The story is largely a mystery: What is Rama? Why is it here? Is it alive? What is its purpose? Over time, some of these questions are answered, but many more are created in their place. Despite being written nearly fourty years ago, Rendezvous With Rama is a timeless tale and I highly recommend it.
Clarke renders the world of Rama with remarkable ease. He gracefully handles the complexities of movement in a cylindrical world in which the terms "up" and "down" have no distinct meaning. While Clarke isn't known for his strong characterization, that is only because his human characters are merely observers. Rama itself is the main character here. Even so, Clarke shares bits and pieces of the lives of Endeavour's crew as they explore Rama with just enough detail to make them likable but not so much as to create a strong attachment.
I have never really liked Clarke's narration-heavy writing style. He spends most of his time in third person omniscient viewpoint, bouncing from character to character at will with long passages of narration in between. Despite this, the story remains strong and the style becomes less noticable with time.
The audio narration is, in a word, terrible. The narrator handles dialogue quite well but the narrative sections are choppy and monotone. Some Audible listeners may feel that this suits Clarke's writing style, but I disagree. The staccato of the narrator's reading can be so difficult to follow that it made me feel almost sea-sick. At the best of times, I found myself drifting off thinking about other things. He wholly failed to engage me in the story and it is a tragedy that this is the only available audibook version of Rendeavous With Rama.
This should have been a five star audio book. It is one of Clarke's finest works and will live on for generations to come.
But the cadence of the narration and technical quality is so poor I came back to the web site to see if it was a computer generated voice. The recording reminds me of the voice on the automated NOAA weather radio stations. I suspect this recording is compressed to the point that it adds a machine like quality to what we hear.
It should be at the very least re-encoded with less compression loss if not completely re-recorded from scratch.
The book itself:
Admittedly, I’ve only read Chidlhood’s End and Collected Short Stories by Clarke. Rendezvous with Rama is consistent with what I’ve read so far, in the sense that it can be classified as hard sci-fi with painstaking technical descriptions. While the novel is devoid of interesting characters, which can be excused, the problem is that the world of Rama itself isn’t all that interesting. In fact, I would say this book is extremely similar to Ringworld, especially the anti-climactic ending.
The narration is by far the worst I've ever heard. I can excuse the flat, emotionless voice. But the total lack of intonation is inexcusable. The narrator would break off mid-sentence, pause, and starts the rest of the sentence as if it were the beginning of one. It's as if he is doing an enunciation exercise with total regard for intonation. Strangely, he sounds fine in other books, so perhaps this was his early work. I literally had to will myself through the book.
In short, check out the print version if you want to read it. I would give 2 stars to the book and 0 star to the narration.
The book is interesting, though I would say overrated. The narration is just about the worst I have heard - in the narrator's attempt at perfect enunciation, he has produced a very choppy, often monotone reading that is often difficult to listen to.
I enjoy mostly classics, sci-fi, and sci-fi classics
As a stand alone work, i wouldn't recommend it. but it's the first book in a series. maybe it gets better...