Eclectic mixer of books of my youth and ones I always meant to read, but didn't.
This story is a wonderful tribute to its author, a man of infinite hope and unquenchable optimism - it just can't be as lonely out there as our sole existence would demand it is! But, in his typical style, preferring to educate than to dictate, by letting the discovery fuel the desire to learn more, Sagan takes the listener on a journey to a most unlikely plane, or, maybe, a not so unlikely one.
These days, most people who love this book have seen the Zemeckis film. For many it disappointed. But it is important to remember that it was Sagan and his wife, Ann Druyan, who wrote the screenplay and, thereby extended their blessing to that interpretation. I mention this because it is hard now to listen to or read the book without picturing Jodie Foster or Matthew McConaughey (the latter in a much elevated role when compared to the book). I found that difficult. A better listener might be able to overcome that condition (or might actually like it).
I enjoyed this production, but probably not as much as my first read of this book many years ago. The first reason for this deficit is the one that I have mentioned (which is constantly in your face, even to the point of it being on the cover art). The second is that I found Laurel Lefkow's reading, although fine in most respects, a bit "sing-songy" in parts, particularly the sentimental parts.
Overall, this is a great story, sagaciously envisioned and well worth the effort to read or listen to.
Not very subtle and quite naive for my modern taste, but I really enjoyed it. It does turns into a lecture from time to time, but still never bores you or goes over your head.
I love this genre and thus greatly enjoyed the story. The reader did a tremendous job with keeping you interested with the many voices for characters. She's very talented. It had two short skips in the audio but for a whole book that was no issue. I would recommend and have already. Enjoy.
it was kinda slow at first and didn't really hold my interest but got much better as it progressed. It was very interesting to see how Sagan viewed the future, year2000, from 1985.
I am a fan of the movie, although it certainly has it's faults. I have always wanted to read the book and finally got around to it recently.
I didn't enjoy much of it. It was a struggle to make it to the end. Mr. Sagan gets bogged down trying to explain this and that - religion in particular. You can sure tell this was written by someone who was not a fiction writer. What could have been great parts of the book were just blurted out with no real build-up or meaning.
Ms. Lefkow's performance is also stiff and lacks any kind of power.
I am not sorry I read it, but it is hard to recommend.
My firstly and foremost misunderstanding, was that this was a work of fiction.
When I originally picked the book up, seeing it written by the great and influential Carl Sagan, I was hoping to find some information to take with me from this book. About halfway through it was when I realised this take was not of our timeline, and then struggled to enjoy the story following.
I found myself annoyed with the narrator at times due to a large number of segments that the narrator's tone and voice change slightly, but enough to be noticeable, and frequent enough to be tiresome.
A good work of fantasy, but unfortunately not my cup of tea.