I've heard a lot about this book and was anxious to finally give it a listen. This is where I admit that I had to force myself to finish it. I was so BORED with all of the intricate detailed unnecessary "history" of the planet. Yes, we need some background on the planet, but the amount of detail supplied was insane. I found my mind wandering through much of it and when I came back to the story, I never felt as though I'd missed anything. It was as though I was sitting through one of Charlie Brown's classes at school with the teacher's voice saying "wah wah wah wah wah". Ugh. When the story came back to real time events it was very interesting, but there simply wasn't enough of that to keep me going. In my opinion, you could have tossed 50% of this book and it would have been a decent read. Apologies to those of you who loved it. I was disappointed.
Harry Turtledove fan
Very good performance by narrators. Could feel the bright heat and light of the fierce blue sun and also the orange glow of the deep red sun.
Each actor is narrated well, especially the scene with Liquid Oxygen.
The book itself seems meandering too much. It takes random walks into past and leaves us stranded there for long time.
The idea behind the book is terrifically original and the setting is creepily isolated. But every time suspense is building, the author breaks away for a review of scientific theory. i understand this is supposed to add realism but it could have been done with much shorter sections.
The narrator does a good job with a very limited cast of characters.
This book started with immense potential as a unique sci-fi story, but a some point it turned into a love story and philosophical treatise. I would have enjoyed it more if he finished any one of these genres but it just ended with a thud and many loose ends. I agree with many others that although written 50 years ago, Mr. Lem was ahead of his time and despite some outdated technical items, the book shows excellent technical creativity. I was also impressed with extensive descriptions of this fantasy world. Although in the end, his complex ideas and descriptions of the alien life forms built expectations of some unique world which would leave me dumbfounded - then nothing... As for the narration, Allesandro was great and I now I want to watch BSG again to see his other work. I thought about returning it but then again maybe I have to read it again to see what I missed, since others went gaga over it - maybe not! Come on Rothfuss and GRRM - we can't wait forever!
This book had such a great premise. I was drawn in very quickly. It was a little technical but nothing I couldn't get through. The story kept building and building. You had no idea how the characters would get out of the situation they were in. I felt bad for the "bad guys" of the book as well as the "good guys", (although the definition of bad guys and good guys is not as stark as in other books). Anyway, I was hooked ......... and then the end came. So abrupt, so unsatisfying, awful. Its not that the bad guys or good guys won. Its not that everything always has to end up good or its a bad story. Its nothing like that. Its like embarking on a 100 mile road trip and 80 miles in you hit a brick wall and sit there on the side of road wondering what just happened.
"Audible is the most efficient of high quality entertainment."
Though Solaris may initially seem awkward and full of unnecessary back story, all of this information will be used and make sense in time. In hindsight, the non-traditional delivery and over reliance on suspension of disbelief helped place the reader among the strange circumstances of the book's characters.
Ultimately, Solaris delivers a refreshingly creative science fiction context for some very human emotions. Solaris is clearly a classic.
It was a pleasure to hear Alessandro Juliani's voice again after his prominent role in Battlestar Galactica. As one of his earliest narrations, his style was slightly more dry and stilted than I'd prefer. Still, he succeeded in bringing the characters to life and pulled off some of the difficult emotional passages.
The combination of the story and the narrator's portrayal of the different characters made this audio book really enjoyable and as I also bought the whispersync'ed Kindle book it was really easy to get into the book
The depths of the characters and their internal struggles combined with the alien context they were in.
Where the main character reconciles with the strangeness of his reproduced wife and comes to love this new person
Sometimes you need to travel far to get in touch with your inner self
Say something about yourself!
Solaris is widely considered a classic of science fiction, and with good reason. Working with just a limited cast and an alien world unlike any other I'm aware of in the genre, Stanislaw Lem writes a story that manages to be compelling and confounding at the same time. His handling of something that might be considered "first contact" feels completely fresh, even if the book was written 50 years ago and you've probably read many stories dealing with first-time encounters between humans and alien worlds.
Not to take anything away from the book itself, but it was the narration that really blew me away. The narrator manages to sound weary, depressed, or even detached when the story calls for it, while still managing to pull the reader/listener along. I had no problem losing myself in the narration as if the story, written in first person, was being told by the person who experienced the events. I can't think of a time when I've been more impressed by an audiobook's narrator.
After finishing the book and reading more about the narrator, Alessandro Juliani, I was quite surprised to learn the he was the actor who played Gaeta in the 2004 Battlestar Galactica series. At no point was Gaeta brought to mind during the narration, but I was startled to learn this because I was struck when listening by how much one of the characters sounded like Colonel Tigh on that same show. Weird.
Anyway, this one lives up to the hype and fully deserves its status as a classic.
I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who I thought would be interested in the story.
Snout (sp?) He is one of the best borderline crazy characters ever.
I have not heard any of Alessandro Juliani's other performances, but I am familiar with him from the new Battlestar Galactica. If I were to compare those two things, I would say that while I liked Gaita a lot, this audio books allows Alessandro to show much more of his acting abilities. He breathes real emotional life into these characters and has an excellent feel for other things we do in speaking like saying "uh" or "mmm"-ing. (I hope that made sense)
This book is generally low key in presentation. It is up to the reader/listener to decide their reaction. I have read it several times in the older translation and now this one. I don't want to give any spoilers, so I will just say that it always makes me wonder what I would do in the same situation. Would I be as dramatically affected as the characters and what is the real reason for what is happening, if we could even understand the reason.
I am not a language scholar, so I can't speak about the accuracy of this translation. However, just reading it, it is much more pleasurable and feels more real. The story flows better and you get a better sense of how the characters feel and what is actually happening.That's just about the story. Alessandro's performance is icing on the cake and adds another layer to its depth. Listen to it.
Excellent classic sci-fi and it is difficult to tell it was translated from Polish -- it sounds like it was originally written in English (with the exception of some Polish sounding names). I would certainly recommend this book to anyone into sci-fi.