I'm probably one of Robert Sheckley's biggest fans, but this story was easily one of the weakest of his works.
The idea itself isn't too bad, but the writing just seemed rushed. Definitely not on par with the author's other short stories.
It's almost as if Sheckley was writing this under a strict deadline where he had to finish before he was entirely happy with it. That is, of course, complete conjecture on my part but that's how it comes across.
Skip this one.
5.6 / 10.0
I got into Williamson through his "Humanoids" trilogy of books, and expanded from there. If you have never read his work before, I suggest starting with "With Folded Hands", which is available on Audible in a pair combined with the book's follow-up, "The Humanoids".
This book was a really pleasant surprise to me.
The plot sheds light on both the possible advantages, as well as drawbacks from potential human-alien first contact. How it should be done, where it should be done, why it should be done, and of course, whether it should be done at all.
Williamson's vision of the trans-intergalactic community of species is far different from most writers in the genre. Unlike being set up like an empire, it is more of just a club of sorts. Refreshing take on an old, hashed out premise.
Narration was top quality as well.
Very nice surprise from a book that I had low expectations going into it.
8.48 / 10.00
This story is set up in a Cold War type scenario about one hundred years in the future.
The two sides have been at a stalemate for the entire century because of the looming threat of mutually assured destruction via thermo-nuclear bombs.
But things take a change when robotics is finally at the point where it can produce a humanoid robot that could pass undetected across the borders. A robot so realistic that it could fool even the experts upon close examination. And what if these robots were programmed to carry out an attack on enemy soil?
8.39 / 10.00
After listening to this audiobook, I was shocked at how blatantly Stephen King stole the basic idea of this short story for his novel "Under The Dome". There are of course, differences between the works, but the initial premise is almost identical. Shame on you Mr. King.
ANYHOW... This was a fantastic little short story by John Wyndham. I was never a fan of his most famous story, "The Day of the Triffids", but his short stories are amazing. They can't be found in audiobook format, but if you can get your hands on either of Wyndham's short story collections, "The Seeds of Time" or "Consider Her Ways", BUY THEM. You will not be disappointed.
8.65 / 10.00
This story is a perfect example of how Robert Sheckley often hides a deep message within the confusing riddle of his stylistic stories.
Sheckley forces us to redefine words, question reality, and all in all examine what it means to be human.
One aspect of this story involves an entire race of alien beings whose job it is to collect purple and put it onto a giant mound of other purple. See what I mean?
On first listen, parts of this story might come across as utter nonsense, but if you listen again carefully, you will see the true genius of this author.
8.45 / 10.00
I absolutely love this novel.
Although written decades ago, it's still as fresh as anything today.
The Status Civilization is, in my opinion, Robert Sheckley's masterpiece. "Dimension of Miracles" and "The Journey of Joenes" are both amazing works, but this novel tops anything in all of Sheckley's catalogue. I had actually read this in text format before buying the audiobook and let me tell you, from the first page, I was hooked. After that, I couldn't put it down to save my life.
Do yourself a huge favor and buy this book.
9.9 / 10
The Humanoid Touch is the third and final installment of Jack Williamson's Humanoid trilogy of stories.
The first story in the series, "With Folded Hands", is easily the author's best work. This was followed up by "The Humanoids", which was great, but got a little too far-fetched by the end of the novel for my tastes.
The Humanoid Touch focuses less on the actual robots known as The Humanoids and more on characters and character development. To my surprise, the robots don't even make an appearance until about halfway into the novel. Although this book was much less far-fetched than the second installment of the series, I would still consider it to be its weakest link.
I won't give anything away, but you really DO need to read the previous books in the trilogy to properly follow what is happening in the story, which I consider to be a drawback.
Also, although the narrator in this book IS very good, he isn't QUITE as good with the material as the reader from both of the previous two audiobooks (Which can be found as a set of two, together on Audible).
Still a very enjoyable conclusion to The Humanoid saga though.
8.32 / 10.00
This is a charming little story by one of the masters of sci-fi, Robert Sheckley.
It is only about eight and a half minutes, so it is hard to justify paying around five dollars for such a short listen.
BUT - if you're a fan of Sheckley, as I am, I see little problem shelling out a little extra for such quality.
8.58 / 10.00
"With Folded Hands" is now easily one of my all-time favorite short stories. It takes up the first two hours of this audiobook and is absolutely astounding. I had never heard of Jack Williamson before coming across this book, but after experiencing this read, I will be buying everything I can find that he has published.
"The Humanoids" is also great, but falls a LITTLE bit short of "With Folded Hands" simply because of how complex it gets. It is still very easy to follow, but I have to admit that there is a lot to keep track of. It is one of the few unique stories I have ever read that leaves the reader questioning who the enemy REALLY was by the end of the book. A really neat feeling.
I also must make mention of how amazing the narration performance is. Not only is the reader's voice easy to listen to, but his voices for each character (ESPECIALLY the Humanoids) are almost TOO perfect. Bravo, good sir.
9.18 / 10.00
Unlike the vast majority of Robert Sheckley's other works, this novel does not fall under the category of science fiction.
This book would better be classified as a spy novel with a sprinkling of humor (as is Sheckley's signature).
VERY different from the author's other works, but still very enjoyable.
If you are new to Sheckley, I highly recommend "The 10th Victim" or "The Status Civilization".
- 8.62 / 10.00
Report Inappropriate Content