The future is here...in an adventure of cosmic dimension. In December, 1999, a multinational team journeys out to the stars, to the most awesome encounter in human history. Who - or what - is out there? In Cosmos, Carl Sagan explained the universe. In Contact, he predicts its future - and our own.
©1997 Carl Sagan (P)1997 Simon & Schuster
"Contact deals with issues...worth pondering.The range and depth of ideas is quite uncommon." (New York Times Book Review)
"Like a good mystery, Contact keeps us curious to the end...ingenious and satisfying." (Newsweek)
I originally read this book in high school with two of my friends in the late 80's. We really liked it then. Years later the movie came out and I thought the movie didn't quite do the book justice, it was well done but it seemed to me, at the time, that it fell short. Now after reading/ listening to the book years later, I think the movie actually captured the intent of the story better than the book did. The book, of course, has way more detail and delivers parts of the story in a way that a movie just can't do effectively. Since the book was written by Carl Sagan the non science fiction parts of the book are very accurate based on scientific understanding at the time it was written. Where I think Sagan fumbled but not quite dropped the ball was with the political actions and reactions. And I believe that the political area is where the movie does a better job than the book did. That said, I think that the book does a much better job with Ellie's personal growth which is unfortunately mostly crammed into the last portion of the book with very little, if any, coming before the halfway point. The story might not quite be 5 star material but it is better than 4 stars so I gave it the benefit of the doubt.
The narration was very well done but was lacking in enough areas like clarity of who's speaking when several characters are together. And perhaps there could have been a little more emotion conveyed. Don't get me wrong, she did a very good job it just wasn't 5 stars to me.
I've always been an exceptional fan of the movie version and never gotten around to reading the book. This audiobook allowed me to relive a story I knew I loved from a new perspective. A fantastic reading allowed me to fall into the story without any distraction. Definitely worth investing your time in.
I enjoyed listening to the book in parts, but Sagan does go on some tangents that seem a little unnecessary. Usually when I read a book that is also a movie - I prefer the book. In this case the writing was too dry for me to enjoy more than the movie. The story line in the book is more interesting, but the writing did not stay focused enough for me to fully appreciate it.
The narration was good with the exception of my note below.
FEMALE NARRATORS TAKE NOTE! I would rather hear the normal female voice than some juvenile sounding lisp for a male character. Why-why-why do some female narrators think that a male character - who is an adult - needs a lisp? Especially one who is supposed to be a romantic interest! It is a HUGE turn-off and ruins the romantic aspect of the story, which in turn may ruin the whole story.
This book blew my mind. I'm a big fan of realistic science fiction and this, with 2001 space odyssey is one of the best masterpiece I've read. The plot is detailed enough to grab attention but leave the reader to dream. The performance is strong. Very clear, elegant voice with different tones for different characters. Highly recommended!
Sagan is like that one professor in college that couldn't stay on topic if his life depended on it. At some points you find yourself sitting there wondering what one Earth is he going on about, but give it a couple minutes and you're back on the story.
I'll be honest, I used the skip button more than a few times. It needed to happen, but once the story got going it was hard to walk away from and then it was over.
Overall I like it, but there's some really Irritating exaggerated pronunciation of frequently used words, such as: polar-EYE-zation, civil-EYE-zation, etc...
A captivating story, which wrestles more with the complex interplay of science with politics and religion thannwith the existence of extraterrestial life. Sagan well understood thiese interactions - as a scientist myself I found myself recognising the characters he created, and the arguments he has them making.
So much better than the movie could have prepared me for. You owe it to yourself to read this book. And read it again. Ideas are more important than you realize.
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