I read this in paperback when I was a kid. Now here it is more than 20 years later and it was even better than I remembered it. The story is engaging, the performance is excellent, and the story has me wanting to re-listen/read the rest of the series. At first, I though the little sessions with Sigmund were transparent and distracting, but by the end, they were part of the story and as engaging as the main story-line. I'm in for a penny, so I guess I'm in for a pound. Gotta download Blue Event Horizon now.
This book is told in flashback during psychotherapy of the protagonist. It includes a few hours of banter between the patient and the AI therapist program to flesh out that aspect of the story. I found this to be a unique and unexpected way to move a narrative along, and I enjoyed it. Pohl does a fine job. It's not the best Sci-Fi book ever, but in a world of horrible ones it is a solid, enjoyable entry, with a memorable main character.
Very good story. Narration by Oliver Wyman was great, as usual -- the problem for me, is that I associate his voice with the main character in a couple of other very popular book series. It takes a little while to separate his performance in this book, and to begin to "hear" the voice of Robinette, the protagonist in this book.
Come on! It's Gateway... Interesting structure in storytelling and just a good book. Soon as I can I am going to get the rest of them in the series.
Yes, I would listen to Gateway again. I liked this book very much. It is a good combination of human complexity and compelling story line with a smattering of actual science. The story is presented in a matter-of-fact way and never seems forced. Since it was written in the 77 there are the usual anachronisms, but that's the way it is with sci fi. Overall, the story holds up well and it is easy to see why it won so many awards.
The whole concept of how they get around in space.
The joining of the two story threads.
Hard to put down.
One of the best and most unique sci-fi books I have ever read. It was mainly unique from a character point of view and the going back and forth from the past to the present. It was awesome!!
As the final scenes began to unfold, I was, to my surprise, moved to hush all external life noises surrounding me; to lie down in a silent-dark place to fully experience that rarest of moments in a readers life when one suspects that something transcendent is about to happen and one wants the honor of being fully there with the characters and the events ~ mind, body and soul. I doubt that I will ever stop pondering the kaleidoscope of challenges so softly yet deftly proposed. This is a tightly crafted book without wasted words or scenes. The science fiction is hard and intriguing and some of the best written and worthy of the Hugo and Nebula. Throughout the story one is told of future events which keeps one going to see what happens. I hated the whiney, self-absorbed, jerk of a main character before the pivotal event (why did Pohl represent him thus?) and after ~ which would cripple any saint among us. I'll leave you with a question: Are you living with it, too?
This book was recommended to my by one of my favorite authors, Robert Sawyer. I emailed him a few days ago because I have read all of his works several times and was looking for a new body of work to enjoy. I was quite pleased when I received a response the following day and Pohl seemed to be a good choice after a couple of emails back and forth.
Gateway is a thoughtful book. It is not action packed but takes place mostly in the mind of the main character and his computer-psychologist (who has a dry sense of humor and a tendency to steal all the scenes he is in! grin~). I really cant share too much without ruining the story--so I will leave it at this:
I would spend my last credit for this book. I will read/listen to this again as I am sure I will catch things I missed the first time around. If you are a SciFi fan this is a must read.
A grateful thank you to Mr. Sawyer for his 5-star recommendation.
A Sci Fi junkie who occasionally goes slumming to read other literature.
This is a classic novel that I recommend to SF fans. The plot is a bit simple by today's standards, but probably not for when it was written in the late 70s. It is well written with good scene and character descriptions, and good dialogue. One thing that stood out to me halfway through the book was the influence of the 60s and 70s, namely easy sex with scores of women, pot, and psychotherapy. I was highly entertained with Bob/Rob/Robbie's sessions with Sigfrid. Alternating between the sessions and the past was well done. While I considered Bob to be a total loser, I found myself wanting to know his story, and why he had a nervous breakdown. I wish there was more science and alien discovery in the novel, and that what is there were more accurate - - a common comment and criticism I have of SF novels, both new and old.
Narration: Oliver Wyman is excellent. I think I enjoyed the novel more because of him than I would have otherwise.
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.