I've read this book several times but wanted to listen to it anyway and it was a real pleasure. Well read/performed.
A unique look at a potential future, where the ability for space travel was not discovered through technological innovation, but rather accidently found.
Performance was outstanding. Enjoyed it more than when I originally read the book
This is classic SciFi but I could imagine that the story could be told as a horror/scary movie.
Fun easy listen
I haven't listen to either sawyer or wyman. I would love to hear more from them.
The characters in the book were enjoyable. It was such a pleasure to like the characters, have an interesting plot. It was so much fun listening to the therapy sessions and exciting to find out why the plot plays out the way it does. Please bring more of the series.
Exciting times in a battle to survive against a vicious race and a grizzly environment. Human persistence, intellect, courage, and sacrifice lead to a surprise ending.
I really enjoyed the sci-fi part of the story, but the psychoanalytic exploration of the (part time) sociopathic protagnist was boring and indulgent (I guess it would have to be!?). I hope that the sequels explore more interesting, if less complex characters.
I read Gateway back in the '70s and remembered it as a book that sounded cool but disappointed me. Looking back, I wondered if perhaps it was just too mature or too difficult for me to relate to at a young age so I decided to give the audiobook a try. Oliver Wyman's reading is excellent and author Frederick Pohl's basic premise of abandoned alien ships that launch to pre-programmed, but unknown, destinations is one of the better ideas in science fiction. The book never quite delivers on the evocative promise of it's central idea, never quite evokes the sense of wonder, or horror, that you might expect from it. Instead, it focuses on it's flawed central character, Robinet Broadhead, as he faces both his fear of the unknown and the psychological after effects of a journey in one of the alien vessels. It makes for an interesting story but there's so little exploration of the intriguing concept that it's ultimately disappointing. We get a feel for Broadhead's experience but not enough of a feel for what humanity is finding out there, what the alien ships (and alien constructed setting of Gateway itself) are like. The author almost seems disinterested in them. They're a means of exploring Broadhead's character but as a character, he's not fully developed enough for that goal to make Gateway a completely satisfying read.
In the end, while Gateway is a good book and I can recommend it, my second experience with it was as disappointing as the first. If you choose to listen, just go in knowing this book is primarily a character study. Armed with that information, you may enjoy it much more than I did.
The concept of the Heechee and the technology they left behind is fascinating. It is a solid science fiction concept that would have been really interesting to pursue. Unfortunately, this book doesn’t explore the Heechee and their technology nearly enough. It dwells on Rob Broadhead, a blue collar minor on Earth lucky enough to win a lottery and travel to Gateway an become an interstellar explorer /miner.
Instead of going out to risk life and limb to learn about the universe and possibly become a wealthy man, Rob spends his time fearing the risks and acting as a coward.
Pohl tells Rob’s story through his time with a psychiatrist (computer based) and his memories of the events as they happened. The story telling is reasonably clever but not new (even in the 1980.) What should be the setup for an adventure ends up being the entire story. The ending (I won’t ruin it for you) reveals why Rob has such issues with this wealth and fame and why he feels incredibly guilty for his good fortune.
For me it just wasn’t that clever. Rob is a coward who lacks a moral compass and is generally the architect of his own misery. He is not a character the reader really wants to get to know. I was quite repulsed by his actions and choices and generally felt sorry for him throughout the story.
Most of the other characters weren’t any better. I expect that was by design but it didn’t resonate with me. There was so much potential for a diverse cast. Instead all the characters were similarly sick and flawed.
The story that was there to be told didn’t ever happen. Instead we learn why Rob is even more screwed up than he was before he became a “success”. The story should have centered more on the Heechee. If I someday read any of the other books in the series I hope that race will be further explored.
a Tech Exec who loves the stories about what could be and what should have been. Mixed with histories told from an outside perspective.
This was an interesting piece of I think science fiction. The book is very bi-polar (I appoligize to those who know the clinical definition). The book chapter by chapter phases between a "current time" sessions with a psychoanalyzing computer, and a mans journey into space as a prospector. So, you get two books in one. A journey through a troubled mind, and a journey through space. I enjoyed space much better.
The author of this book only extrapolates on a few select parts of the whole into the future; the rest of tech, culture, psychology, science, everything is taken straight from the late 1970's as they are, and it shows. I'm sure for its time it was genius, but the author's sever lack of thoroughness (or just laziness) in his world-building made this novel dated by even the 1990's, and by 2014 (as I write this) it's constant throwing of anachronisms in your face while pretending to be a good bit into the future makes the suspension of disbelief difficult at best. Even the science gets several things that were reasonably-well-known back then obviously wrong. There are numerous other examples from within the prior 10 years that got this right and are hardly dated at all, even now, so it wasn't just the time.
My other complaint about this book is that it is seriously anticlimactic. It almost feels like the author believes that what he's writing near the end is a good climax, but not only has it been thrown in our face from nearly the beginning what was going to happen, the way it plays out makes you feel like, about a third of the way into an action movie's climax, everyone just stops, shrugs, says something like, "Whatever. I'm bored," and walks away to eat some potatoes. There's a little bit of (expected) emotional build-up, but then it just sputters out and the author ends it.
Great story, but the constant reference to Cassete Tapes was very very distracting. I wish the story could have been updated technology wise. I know this was done back in the 70s, but seriously, it would be best if these books are updated with current technology and physics.
YES. I have to say I HATE dyspopia..period. And I wasn't sure about the slight dystopia plot..but I think some of the reviewers complained it was too technical...and you had me at technical. The characters become family. You cry at the loss. You are alarmed by the humanity...but not surprised at humans as a whole utter failure on this planet and leave the story being not so sure if they have learned abything...but gosh this book makes you ponder very deep and disturbing thoughts.
Actually, the Martian. You will see why when you read it.
I think both narrators did excellent jobs. And I like when there is a female and male narrator for the different parts...helps shake things up a bit.
"And one day, the stars dissapeared..."