This allegory about humanity's exploration of the universe, and the universe's reaction to humanity, was the basis for director Stanley Kubrick's immortal film, and lives on as a hallmark achievement in storytelling.
©1968 Arthur C. Clarke; ©1968 Polaris Productions, Inc.; (P)2000 Brilliance Audio
Excellent Book! For fans of the movie, the book follows it exactly (until end).. but seems to move quicker and with more excitement. You won't be wondering what the hell just happened like the movie.
Now the ending was great. Actually made sense and kinda reminded me of 'contact' in how the aliens dealt with visitors. It made me wonder why the movie didn't use this storyline..? It would've been great and made sense. The movie ending is one big mess. I see what Kubric was trying to do, but he did it badly. BADLY. I came away with more respect for Clark, and less for Kubric. Clark was a genius and its a shame he didn't write more.(easy for me to say ha) Check out 'Childhoods End' for another Clark masterpiece. 'Rendezvous with Rama' is also good but maybe a tad anti climactic... to say the least.
Get the Book you won't regret it!
I am brutally honest. Popular, love everything they read, reviewers are scared to go neg. and risk their ranking. It's your money!!!
2 CHILD LAWS, NEWSPAD (I-PAD), STARGATE
I have lost track of how many times I have read the book, listened on tape, watched the movie, and now I have downloaded it. Arthur C. Clarke is in a class, all by himself. To hear his voice in the introduction was a real treat. It is amazing the amount of things he wrote about in the sixties that are now everyday things.
Kids under 40 may find this book and the movie to be a little slow and a little technical. That is only in parts. The story as a whole is a masterpiece.
The book differs from the movie slightly and that is explained by Clarke in the introduction. A good look into the making of a movie and the writing of a book. To be honest I felt that the tension built by dealing with HAL was done better in the movie. I loved this, but I really liked (The City and The Stars )and (Rendezvous with Rama) better.
I had not realized until this reading that Clarke was part of the group warning us about overpopulation, Pohl, Harrison, Asimov, and Silverberg among many. He talks about Americans having meatless days and about many countries having 2 child laws. If you are over 50, you may remember the hysteria about overpopulation and the dire predictions for the turn of the century. Things we need to think about as today's writers call us stupid for not freaking out over there warnings about the most popular predicted crises of today.
Dick Hill is my favorite narrator.
Based on the ratings of the book I thought that it would be good. I was wrong. Its boring and overrated. I got half way through and couldn't listen anymore. I found myself daydreaming about listening to a better book while listening to this book. The only interesting part was the first thirty minutes about the cavemen.
Excellent Science Fiction
Bowman, mostly because the most interesting stuff happens to him
He says the chapters, so many times in audio books they don't announce the chapters or provide a break between sections.
Captured the wonder and excitement of ETs
story idea is really interesting, and starts well, but feels rushed as it progresses.
It is astounding to me how accurately Clarke detailed the solar system in the mid '60s. I find it funny that the most glaring error in his prediction of the future is that the US cooperates with Soviets on building the space station rather than with Russia. Amazing story. Beautiful imagination of the future. Detailed scientific knowledge of the cosmos.
Excellent and compelling. not a good time to be forced to write a review. Audible marketing becoming oppressive :(
Hmm. This is strictly a matter of taste, but I am not a big fan of massive exposition.
2001, and Rendezvous are more that style - where as 2061 & 3001 are more story driven then exposition driven.
I never read Arthur C. Clarke, aside from 3001 in 1998. I felt it was a good thing to encounter his early works now, later in life, rather then earlier.
That said, I enjoyed Childhood's End more. Not because it was better, but that I am more drawn to the mystery that Childhood's End offered. I feel the same about 2010 - because it is more about discovering What Happened over What is Happening.
I really enjoyed the short biography that played after the audiobook concluded. How the movie came before the book, but that the book had to come before the movie would be made.
Really enjoyed the film so downloaded the audiobook as I was confused by the films ending. The audio book was clearer.
"For anyone who never really understood the film"
We did of course all adore 2001 when it reached our cinemas - although strangely no one seems to have understood it as well as the 7 year old nephew I took with me. I would agree with other reviews that this version gives a far better/deeper explanation of the things we could not understand about the film. The intro from Arthur C Clarke I also found extremely interesting, I had not realised that the book and film were created in parallel. Well read and definitely worth listening to - and I had not realised that there were further books in this series. I have just read 2010 (shamefully not on kindle or audio) and now going on to the next.
"Great but please release 2010!."
Thought it was a great book with good visualization. Need the second book released before I can purchase the others though :/
"Not as I remembered it"
This was one of the first grown up books I read. I really enjoyed it with my dried sponge of a brain soaking up new ideas and philosophies. It was time well spent then but I am not so sure it was now.
My main issue is the cold, unempathetic way the story is written. It is as if Mr Clarke is trying to impress us how clever he is rather than telling a tale that grips and inspires you.
Read in a slow rather monotonous tone is not actually bad. It's almost as if HAL is telling the story. But it doesn't sell the story which is really needed here.
Yes it made me watch the film again which I believe to be far better. Kubrick gives character to the story which Clarke failed to do.
If you like a story with an autistic feel then this is a book for you. If you enjoy a story to have feel and emotion look elsewhere.
"Great telling of a great book"
Much better story wise than the movie. Only issue was Dick Hill sounded like he was talking with cotton balls in his mouth, not sure if that's him or just the recording. Otherwise recommended and can't wait for someone to do 2010
"Science Fiction Classic !"
A Classic of the genre, Arthur C Clarke combines a visionary combination of scientific speculation with poetic sensibilities.
"one of the best books ever written"
what can I say. this is a classic book. legendary.. never get tired of Clarkey
"A good novel an EXTRAORDINARY cinematic experience"
I'd say that Arthur C. Clarke's forte lies in his great talent in writing 'hard' science fiction so if like me you are a stickler for believable descriptions of space travel & futurology in general I'd say no one is better. Yes he may have missed the mark here or there -most notably by over estimating our technological achievements by the year 2001 but his 'hits' more than make up for these shortcomings & makes this novel far more of a success than a failure.
Very few authors have envisaged space travel as accurately as Clarke has -in fact arguably none have. He actually predicted the existence of the communication satellite well in advance of the real thing, a skill which not many other SF authors can boast. In the fullness of time he may well prove to be right about one or two other predictions he's made.
On first appearances, 2001 A Space Odyssey seems to be about an journey into outer space but in truth it's every bit as much about a journey through inner space i.e. the evolution of consciousness: From animal > human > computer > universal consciousness. This theme doesn't come across as vividly as it does in the film, in fact it's not entirely obvious in the film version upon first viewing but it becomes more apparent on subsequent viewings. This theme is within the subtext of the novel but isn't spelled out.
Dick Hill does a good job of narrating Clarke's novel but once you've seen the film it's hard not to compare the cinematic performance of HAL with his own interpretation. That's not really a criticism of Hill - he has an impossible task here as the script in the film is noticeably superior to Clarke's dialogue so it's unfair to judge his interpretation as inferior.
Oh yes! As a matter of fact I've watched 2001 many many times because every time I see it another dimension of the story becomes apparent. I'm flabbergasted by two reviews of this novel claiming the book is better than the film. I can only say one thing to this: It is not. Not by a long shot. I think the reason for this is because Stanley Kubrick added a very substantial degree of depth to the story which simply doesn't exist in the book which pales by comparison. Clarke fails to convey the deeply mysterious atmosphere (or rather lack of it!) conveyed in the film's extravagant juxtaposition of silence & music. Kubrick understood that less is more & in my opinion created not only the greatest SF film ever made but one of the most astounding works of cinema ever made. I'd go as far as to say I've never seen a film succeed at conveying the awe & beauty of space as convincingly as 2001 does. Nothing comes even close to Kubrick's masterpiece & I can't imagine that anything ever will without seeming like a pale comparison to his blueprint. 'Interstellar' attempted to steal the crown but ended up looking like a pretentious parody instead.
If you haven't seen the 2001 film & are considering reading the book DON'T because you'll regret it. It's not that Clarke wrote a poor novel - he didn't. It's definitely a compelling enough tale but the book suffers from too much detail where as the added 'space' (no pun intended) applied to the screen version makes Clarke's story really blossom like no other Science Fiction tale ever had before or since. If you possibly can see it at the cinema or failing that, on a widescreen television in a cold pitch black room.
Over 40yrs on this is still an outstanding epic, the quality of story and thought provoking themes are as relevant today if not more so.
I've read the books a couple of times but really enjoyed this audio version to the point that I've just stood in my kitchen for the last 40 minutes listening to it, and just ordered the blu-ray.
Loved it! Audible, get 2010 on here next please.
"The best way to start the Odyssey"
As with an earlier reviewer - the audio version provides a clearest way to start the classic journey. It all seems to make sense now - a classic.
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