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Foundation | [Isaac Asimov]

Foundation

For 12,000 years the Galactic Empire has ruled supreme. Now it is dying. But only Hari Sheldon, creator of the revolutionary science of psychohistory, can see into the future, to a dark age of ignorance, barbarism, and warfare that will last 30,000 years. To preserve knowledge and save mankind, Seldon gathers the best minds in the Empire, both scientists and scholars, and brings them to a bleak planet at the edge of the Galaxy to serve as a beacon of hope for a fututre generations.
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Publisher's Summary

For 12,000 years the Galactic Empire has ruled supreme. Now it is dying. But only Hari Sheldon, creator of the revolutionary science of psychohistory, can see into the future, to a dark age of ignorance, barbarism, and warfare that will last 30,000 years. To preserve knowledge and save mankind, Seldon gathers the best minds in the Empire, both scientists and scholars, and brings them to a bleak planet at the edge of the Galaxy to serve as a beacon of hope for a fututre generations. He calls his sanctuary the Foundation.

But soon the fledgling Foundation finds itself at the mercy of corrupt warlords rising in the wake of the receding Empire. Mankind's last best hope is faced with an agonizing choice: submit to the barbarians and be overrun or fight them and be destroyed.

Listen to all of Isaac Asimov's Foundation series, including (in chronological order):

Prelude to Foundation
Forward the Foundation
Foundation
Foundation and Empire
Second Foundation
Foundation's Edge
Foundation and Earth

©1982 Isaac Asimov (P)2010 Random House

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (2545 )
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  •  
    T. Hradek NY 03-12-12
    T. Hradek NY 03-12-12 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
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    "A great listen"
    Where does Foundation rank among all the audiobooks you???ve listened to so far?

    These books are all about social evolution, and he does a great job of showing the steps of that evolution in an interesting story.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Foundation?

    There are many good scenes but I link the one in the beginning of the book where Celdon establishes the foundation by making it easy for the empire simply to give them a worthless planet yet its exactly what he wants.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christopher Victoria, BC, Canada 03-07-12
    Christopher Victoria, BC, Canada 03-07-12
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    1
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    Story
    "The Future Too Distant to be Pictured"
    What would have made Foundation better?

    The author should have chosen between Science Fiction or Fantasy. I would rather have seen more imagery to prove these worlds derive from our own.


    What was most disappointing about Isaac Asimov’s story?

    I'm sure political and judiciary dialogs will still be held in the far future, but amongst the quintillion or so humans, somebody must be up to something more interesting.


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Scott Brick?

    Scott Brick's narration helped me through the byzantine rhetoric where my bookmark still rests in the paperback.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alfred Cleveland, GA, United States 03-05-12
    Alfred Cleveland, GA, United States 03-05-12 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
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    6
    6
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    "Dull"
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    Everything but the narrator.


    What could Isaac Asimov have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    less cloak and dagger. less political maneuvering.


    What does Scott Brick bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    His melodramatic style is the only thing that made it bearable.


    Could you see Foundation being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    God No.


    Any additional comments?

    There has to be a better story than the machinations of a futuristic version of the Roman Catholic Church.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Obfucius Global 03-05-12
    Obfucius Global 03-05-12

    Obfuscate Reality

    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
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    5
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    1
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    "Prolific"
    Where does Foundation rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    The story starts of strong, immersing the listener into the depths of the futuristic empirical world of Asimov's Foundation with a bang. That being said, it tends to dwindle towards the end at times coming in and out again here and there. The first part of the book was definitely the best part.


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Scott Brick?

    Nothing against him personally but his voice was fairly high pitched and nasally which I don't know if it was just a bad recording or and older recording or what-not but it surely tended to grate on the nerves over time making this a listen to enjoy in sparing intervals.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    There is much to be learned from Asimov's Foundation from the standpoint of its political and social-economic structure as a whole as I believe it is safe to say that we ourselves may now be facing a true


    Any additional comments?

    The core fundamentals and concepts addressed in Asimov's Foundation are of great appeal as they address issues relevant to the situation we now face in our own history as a civilization. The political structure of the foundation is based on a true meritocracy where those wise and learned of society (the most meritorious) are allowed to hold political offices and through their intellect and wisdom are able to overt terrible catastrophes of the future. This of course, is an ideal political structure but it is nothing new. The ideas based of liberty, justice and free trade are similar to those expressed in Plato's Republic, of which were largely adopted by the founding fathers of The Republic of The United States of America, which sadly is no more but has instead been replaced by a doppelgänger now referred to as a Democracy. This new system, while greatly reducing individual freedoms, liberty, justice and free trade, allows 51 percent of the popular vote to lead the minority and don't even need an education to do so. It is a system mostly designed to benefit the upper class, who through providing fear and misinformation to the populace are able to control the popular vote and remain in power. Fed by mass consumerism and a widely corrupt banking system, it's politicians can be bought by corporate interests through lobbyists who will actually get their political contributions returned back to them in the form of bailout bonds purchased by unwitting tax payers. As you can see, our civilization may well be facing such a crisis now as outlined in Asimov's Foundation.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Andy Rochester, NH, United States 03-05-12
    Andy Rochester, NH, United States 03-05-12 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
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    9
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    "Good performance of a classic of science fiction"
    Would you listen to Foundation again? Why?

    Yes - it's a classic, and a fun listen.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Foundation?

    The scenes in the imperial library are very vivid in my mind.


    What about Scott Brick???s performance did you like?

    The performance got out of the way. I didn't notice it - just the story and the characters.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    no, but I think I finished it in 24 hours.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    A Hull, QC, Canada 02-16-12
    A Hull, QC, Canada 02-16-12
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    "Written 60 years ago and still a very good sci-fi"

    The story stands the test of time! I was hooked after the first two chapters. My mind was constantly working trying to figuring out what the next chapter would bring. When I finished the book, I purchased the second one immediately. If you’re a Larry Nevin or Jerry Pournelle fan you will most likely love this book. A few things to consider are that you have to on occasion suspend your critical eye as certain thing show this book was written in the 50s (everyone is smoking and some of the technology references date the book). Also the narrator was pretty good but sometimes did not change his intonation enough when changing character. Note that he improved this significantly in the second book and was no longer an issue for me.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jose Atlanta, GA, United States 02-13-12
    Jose Atlanta, GA, United States 02-13-12 Member Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not this narrator's best work"

    This was a challenging listen. It was helpful to know from other reviews that there are fragments of text in the print edition that simply stop without warning. I have loved Scott Brick as a reader in both fiction (mostly thrillers) and nonfiction, especially in his unabridged version of The Devil in the White City. In this book, however, I found myself lost in dialogue between just two characters on a number of occasions, not sure who was saying what. The voicings and inflections he chose were too similar, and the shifts from one character to the other not apparent enough.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robert Eddyville, OR, United States 12-21-11
    Robert Eddyville, OR, United States 12-21-11 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    "boring and unimaginative"
    What disappointed you about Foundation?

    no connection to entertainment
    no heart
    the science was at best borrowed from others with basic knowledge


    What could Isaac Asimov have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    not write it


    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tom Overijse, Belgium 12-19-11
    Tom Overijse, Belgium 12-19-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    "Too descriptive for me"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    I do like Isaac Asimov's stories usually, but I think I'm more in for the shorter stories. For some reason this book did not drag me into the story. Not to say that it was bad, but it went too much into the politics of


    How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

    Make it more active and less descriptive.


    What aspect of Scott Brick’s performance would you have changed?

    Not sure, I think it's too early for me to judge that as I am only recently an audiobook listener.


    Did Foundation inspire you to do anything?

    Yes, to give it a rest and try the foundation books maybe later on.


    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Henry 12-06-11
    Henry 12-06-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Epic"

    Wonderfully epic novel. If you'd like to read this, check out the whole series, they're not in order by release date. You should read them by story order, great stuff!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 71-80 of 83 results PREVIOUS1789NEXT
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  • Peter
    Beulah, United Kingdom
    3/1/11
    Overall
    "On Audible at last!"

    A brilliantly thought out book that was a pleasure to listen to. The story is ambitious in scale to say the least but Asimov is more than up to the task and creates a fascinating world in which to immerse the reader. The format is that of short stories encapsulated within the broader Galactic history. These stories drive the prophecy of Hari Sheldon with glacial inevitability - they are clever and the characters engaging and sharp in their depiction. I will definitely be finishing the trilogy. As always, Scott Brick does a great job of narrating this epic series.

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • David
    Weston-super-Mare, Somerset, United Kingdom
    1/31/11
    Overall
    "A great interpretation of Foundation"

    Foundation is clearly one of the best science fiction books ever written. Any audiobook interpretation of a good story can be compromised both by choice of reader and the addition of background music or sound effects. I have listened to both versions of Foundation offered by Audible narrated by Scott Brick and Jim Gallant. The Scott Brick interpretation completely outclasses the Jim Gallant version. To be fair, Scott Brick has the advantage of working with the unabridged book and he does a wonderful job - his narration is clear and his phrasing is good whereas Jim Gallant had to work with an abridged version padded by long periods of awful music. Anyone listening to this version of Asomov's greatest stories will, I am sure, not be disappointed.

    13 of 14 people found this review helpful
  • Stephen
    Tewkesbury, United Kingdom
    7/5/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A strange experience"
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    It is what it is!


    Would you ever listen to anything by Isaac Asimov again?

    Yes, of course


    Which character – as performed by Scott Brick – was your favourite?

    There aren't any characters - that's one of the problems with the book. But probably Hardin.


    If this book were a film would you go see it?

    Yes


    Any additional comments?

    This was a strange experience. I remember loving this as a teenager, but this comes across rather poorly now. It's not the outmoded attitude towards technology - Asimov can't be blamed for that. It's just the stories. They are pretty dry - it's all very talk driven. Most of the characters are interchangeable, and there's barely a woman in the entire book.

    It's funny how attitudes change. That said, I'll still probably listen to the next one at some point. But not now - I need something with more dynamics!

    Oh, Scott Brick does a very decent job - particularly as the text is 80% dialogue!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Donald
    Braintree, United Kingdom
    8/6/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A Classic Written By A Genius"
    What made the experience of listening to Foundation the most enjoyable?

    I've read and re-read the Fountain books 'til the spines broke. As an introduction to Sci-Fi it still stands as a great epic. I love the thought processes of the characters, the ideas and plot twists.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Foundation?

    When the true purpose of the Foundation is revealed and the extent Harry Seldon has planned becomes apparent.


    What about Scott Brick’s performance did you like?

    I thought Scott Brick did very well in coping with a multitude of characters and did not let it become 'pantomime' in any way.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Every time there is a triumph of reason and thought over aggression and bullying - a point that is laboured throughout the Foundation Saga but still gets me every time.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • mark
    Bristol, United Kingdom
    7/14/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A classic from a different age"

    Foundation is from a different age and it it feels it.
    It is no doubt a true classic and it is vasty influential, but I did find it difficult to like.
    One of the problems is that the story is all about the idea of a 1000 year plan to save civilisation, there are characters in the story, but they are difficult to tell apart.
    This is a basic problem with the story and nothing to do with the performance of the work, Scott Brick does a good job with material, but it is difficult to make such a work, interesting .
    The attitude towards technology and notably women also feels very dated.
    Having said all of this, I probably will try the next book in the series, since this was written as a single story, rather than as a series of linked short stories maybe that will work better?

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Anthony
    MILTON KEYNES, United Kingdom
    7/8/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I wasn't sure when I chose it...."
    Where does Foundation rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Foundation is one of the best audiobooks I have purchased, its right at the top of the pile.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I have always been a fan of sci fi but I really enjoyed the low fantasy element. This led to a more plot and character driven story.


    What about Scott Brick’s performance did you like?

    I wasn't sure about Scott Brick to start with although after a while I found his performance to be pleasant and clear.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I think its a lot of story to listen to in one go and found it better to break the story into parts to let me think about the plot.


    Any additional comments?

    Great book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • the drumer
    Sussex. UKK
    6/24/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "asimov at his best"
    What made the experience of listening to Foundation the most enjoyable?

    For me the narrator seemed just to fit the part and his voice (Unlike many others) did not intrude into the story line


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Foundation?

    Just griping from start to finish


    Have you listened to any of Scott Brick’s other performances? How does this one compare?

    Not yet


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    This question seemes to paraphrase the question before last "What was one of the most memorable moments of Foundation"? so I refer to that answer


    Any additional comments?

    Asimovs depth of story line and characters have such relevance and a great understanding of our own society. The Foundation Trilogy could be said to almost explain some of the theories of Karl Marxy. Any one who reads the Foundation should without doubt get the rest of the Trilogy

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • D
    Winterbourne, South Glos., United Kingdom
    1/13/11
    Overall
    "Fantastic future history on a galaxy-wide scale"

    The definitive sci-fi, a history of the far future, with a scope across the whole galaxy, but almost contemporary in the politics and dreams of the frontier. This and the two sequels must be read - by sci-fi, but also by politics and philosophy students alike.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
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