Winner of the 1961 Hugo Award for Best Novel and widely considered one of the most accomplished, powerful, and enduring classics of modern speculative fiction, Walter M. Miller’s A Canticle for Leibowitz is a true landmark of 20th-century literature - a chilling and still-provocative look at a postapocalyptic future.
In a nightmarish, ruined world, slowly awakening to the light after sleeping in darkness, the infantile rediscoveries of science are secretly nourished by cloistered monks dedicated to the study and preservation of the relics and writings of the blessed Saint Isaac Leibowitz. From there, the story spans centuries of ignorance, violence, and barbarism, viewing through a sharp, satirical eye the relentless progression of a human race damned by its inherent humanness to recelebrate its grand foibles and repeat its grievous mistakes.
Seriously funny, stunning, tragic, eternally fresh, imaginative, and altogether remarkable, A Canticle for Leibowitz retains its ability to enthrall and amaze. It is now, as it always has been, a masterpiece.
©1959 Walter M. Miller, Jr. (P)2011 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
“Chillingly effective.” (Time)
Well, I thought it was a good effort that fell a bit short. It felt like a couple of short stories on a common topic which were loosely tied together. There was an extremely feeble attempt to provide a 'thread' throughout the book, but it really felt artificial.
Listening to the book did make me want to learn Latin :-)
Oregon Forester, audio book addict
I will say, the book left me scratching my head but I did like the story. This book is not for everyone it is not a story that is easy to follow. The writer leads you into corners that are bewildering, you'll find yourself thinking "What?" However there is a poetry in the writing that kept me going through out the book. A post apocalyptic tale that spans century's and illustrates a somewhat cynical view of a violent humanity that is destined to repeat its mistakes over and over again.
Checking out Brandon Sanderson's work
This story tells a somewhat disturbing tale about earth post a nuclear exchange. The story covers a few thousand years and is a pretty disturbing story of humanity. The performance is good.
I am legally blind and talking books are the way I survive.
This is a very special book. The question that Miller deals with is what if the world should succumb to nuclear war and earth is all but wiped out how would the survivors rebuild. Mankind is never been one to learn from the mistakes of the past. Miller is writing in the late fifties when the threat of war was real; when nations across the world were experimenting with weapons that could wipe out whole cities and destroy whole nations.
This is a challenging book. I read somewhere-
"The lesson of History is that man does not learn the lessons of history"
I read this when I was just a kid, many years ago, and just didn't appreciate it like I did this time around. It has a millennium long story to tell, about just how stupid the human race can be. High;y recommended for those who enjoy a little sci-fi mixed into their "sociological" listens. Good narrator too.
The story highlights how small gradual steps in the life's of individuals is what creates culture, and rash actions are what destroys it. A fun and interesting setting to explore a lot of ethical questions on pain and suffering.
Post-Apocalyptic monks debate whether or not to Baptize a mutants second head!
Normally this would not have been a problem for me, however, the constant details of Catholicism interfered with the story line. The continual references to Catholic life, ritual, and belief actually drowned out the story. The writing became too cluttered to enjoy.
An unnerving forecast of a future that has already happened -- and could still happen again. Tom Weiner carries off a variety of roles, in a variety of epochs, with panache.
This is one of the classic modern science fiction novels, and it lends itself well to the audiobook format, but the reader has made some strange choices.Particularly egregious is his rendering of Thon Taddeo, who is supposed to be a cultured, ironic Renaissance man with the intelligence of an Einstein or a Leonardo da Vinci. The reader makes him sound like Big Daddy in Cat On a Hot Tin Roof or the the villainous Southern warden in a prison movie. What was he thinking of?
A Canticle for Leibowitz is a unique and compelling story. The three parts of the book were tied together in a very creative way that kept me waiting to discover what happened next.
Although written in the 1950's and set in the distant future, the themes, struggles, questions on science & religion, and the human condition are timeless.
It is difficult to choose a favorite scene as there were so many that were memorable and outstanding. My favorite character was Br. Francis, so I would choose his meeting with the Pope in New Rome.
Preserving the Past to Ensure the Future
A Canticle for Liebowitz is a must read for science fiction/fantasy fans as well as people of faith. You won't be disappointed.
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