In John Scalzi's re-imagining of H. Beam Piper's 1962 sci-fi classic Little Fuzzy, written with the full cooperation of the Piper Estate, Jack Holloway works alone for reasons he doesn't care to talk about. On the distant planet Zarathustra, Jack is content as an independent contractor for ZaraCorp, prospecting and surveying at his own pace. As for his past, that's not up for discussion.
Then, in the wake of an accidental cliff collapse, Jack discovers a seam of unimaginably valuable jewels, to which he manages to lay legal claim just as ZaraCorp is cancelling their contract with him for his part in causing the collapse. Briefly in the catbird seat, legally speaking, Jack pressures ZaraCorp into recognizing his claim, and cuts them in as partners to help extract the wealth.
But there's another wrinkle to ZaraCorp's relationship with the planet Zarathustra. Their entire legal right to exploit the verdant Earth-like planet, the basis of the wealth they derive from extracting its resources, is based on being able to certify to the authorities on Earth that Zarathustra is home to no sentient species. Then a small furry biped - trusting, appealing, and ridiculously cute - shows up at Jack's outback home. Followed by its family. As it dawns on Jack that despite their stature, these are people, he begins to suspect that ZaraCorp's claim to a planet's worth of wealth is very flimsy indeed and that ZaraCorp may stop at nothing to eliminate the fuzzys before their existence becomes more widely known.
©2011 John Scalzi (P)2011 Audible, Inc.
“[Scalzi’s] style and skill make it a highly entertaining read. It succeeds both as a new novel from a talented writer and as a tribute and gateway to Piper’s work.” (Wired)
"It’s a wonderful book.... [T]he way that Scalzi puts that wonderful novel of Piper’s into a fresher context is cynically lovely.... Year’s best? Yeah, one of them." (The San Diego Union-Tribune)
“A perfectly executed plot clicks its way to a stunning courtroom showdown in a cathartic finish that will thrill Fuzzy fans old and new.” (Publishers Weekly)
Holloway - he is on top of it.
Excellence in natation.
When Papa Fuzzy spoke.
Lots of good listening hours.
This is a fascinating story and very well read. I really liked hearing the new version and then the original version of the story. It was not at all as redundant as I thought it might be.
It starts a bit slowly and seems to wander, but as characters and concepts develop it comes together to present unique and thought provoking premises and surprises. There is a vein of humor that runs through it as well as good action and or tension scenes interspersed throughout. I really enjoyed the court room scenes.
This is my third John Scalzi - (Wil Wheaton) novel. He weaves a unique story and one is never quite sure where the story will go. Frankly, as I started each book I found myself after a time thinking, "This seems kinda dumb." Each time the seeming fragmentation would pull together into a clever, unique and intriguing story.
"Agent To The Stars" remains my favorite.
Wil Wheaton is a terrific reader. It was a pleasant surprise to learn that he had played Wesley Crusher in Star Trek - Next Generation.
I am happy to recommend this book.
It was a fun 'read'. I enjoyed the premise and story line.
The intro helped to set it up. I grew to appreciate the story line even more after hearing it again.
Yes. It's a really cool story. I wish it was longer.
I really enjoyed the biology of the alien ecosystem. It was really well thought out, described, and (unlike a lot of sci-fi) very believable.
Yes, I've listened to a lot of Wil Wheaton's performances and some of Scalzi's other writing. I'd say this book isn't as good as some of Scalzi's other work, but Wheaton's performance is excellent, as usual. It's well worth listening to or reading.
There were a few scenes that made me laugh and I imagine a lot of people would cry during one of the sadder scenes. Overall, nothing "extreme," but you will probably laugh and maybe cry.
It's cool that you get the original story that Fuzzy Nation is based on as an audiobook, too. I didn't enjoy it nearly as much (not performed by Wheaton and an older style of storytelling), but it has some merits in the more in-depth ecological information that make it worth checking out, too.
I loved this book! It is the first Scalzi novel I have listened to and I could not put it down, which might have upset my girlfriend a bit.
Reading is a Virtue
I would listen to Fuzzy Nation again, both to Scalzi's take on the story, and to Piper's original version which comes as the second half of the down load. I had not previously read Piper's and thus was surprised at the contrast it presents between the 1960s and more current visions of a science fictional future. While there is a lot of paternalism demonstrated in Piper's story, aspects of the effort to show the Fuzzies as sentient seemed reveal a far more modern take than I expected. My only real objection was the fact that while the characters claim that Fuzzies are sentient, they have no problem claiming them as their own. I guess sentience does not prevent people from wanting to claim one as a pet.
Perhaps having listened to Scalzi's version first had some affect on my perceptions, as he does a far better job of portraying the Fuzzies as ultimately capable of running their own lives and claiming responsibility for their own well being. Needless to say I enjoyed listening to both versions of the story, and I am particularly glad that Scalzi chose to write his own version of the story (Professional fan fiction?). I would not necessarily ever have learned of the original if he had not, and I think he more than did justice to Piper's original idea for the story. Wheaton is a good narrator too. All in all, the books were both well worth the time and credits!
While I wouldn't necessarily compare Fuzzy Nation to another book, I do like the fact that it can be seen as another perspective of eco-science fiction, and since I enjoy the sort of science fiction written to provide alternative perspectives on the world, the universe, and what might happen based on how we use our resources.
I do not want to say too much because it would give away the stories. I guess I am not trying to prove that I listened....
I can find a book to love in any genre -- a beautifully written classic, an interesting mystery or sci-fi, a trashy romance. Bring it!
This audiobook is divided into two parts. The first half (about 7 hrs 20 minutes) is a rewritten modernized version of an older story, and the second half is the original version. I only listened to the first half, so that is what I'm reviewing.
This is a good story, an other-worldly scifi dealing with issues totally different from the usual startship battles and wars against alien invaders. It is at times heartwarming and at times sad, but is entertaining all the way.
The narrator does a good job but doesn't change voices with the characters. Once I noticed he said the wrong character's name and then corrected it right afterwards. That's a no-no in my book for a professional recording, so I give him a 3.
I'm a technician that does a lot of driving for his job. I use the "windshield" time to listen to audiobooks.
This book is a reboot of a classic novel (this is explained in the introduction by John Scalzi), and it's pretty damned good. If you've read any of Scalzi's other novels, and you enjoyed them, you'll enjoy this too. It's witty, smart, well paced, etc. Wil Wheaton is excellent (again) as the narrator. But wait there's more! After you're done with the John Scalzi novel, then the original novel begins. My initial thought was, I just heard this story, but that's not the case. The very general plot of the book, "a prospector discovers a fuzzy animal in his shack" is the same. After that, the stories are their own, both enjoyable, well written, and narrated perfectly. If you don't enjoy both novels, chances are you don't speak English, in which case what the hell are you doing reading this?
Absolutely, Narrator does a fantastic job. The book is funny and spellbinding.
Good guy is an ex-lawyer turned surveyor who distributes justice with a quick tongue and sly wit.
Very honest and interesting, tho after hearing the first part it is very difficult to try and listen to the 2nd part (the original book). Mostly because the first part is just so good! Hard to live up to I guess
Any time Holloway pisses someone off
Alien yet familiar in the best kind of way
If you liked Ready Player One this will have this will have a similar underdog appeal, and the same great performer! The difference is you 80s freaks and gamers won't have any of those nostalgia connections.
First Scalzi. I was a little hesitant when I heard in the author notes that this was a remake or take off from a previous book. Having not read the original, I have no complaints. The story seemed fresh to me...
Wil Wheaton did a great job here as he did with Ready Player One (pretty sure that was Wil) in fact some of the character names were similar enough to send your mind on little dead ends trying to remember the connections.
Possible that someone would make this into a movie, but it might be short on action and a good chase scene...
"Good straight forward science fiction"
I've never read the original (or, to be honest, heard of it). However this was an easy listen with a satisfying progression through the story. Good science fiction - not overplaying the technology or differences between our time and theirs. A story which tells itself straight - and well read by Wil Wheaton. Made me laugh in a few places too - and I wish the characters could be in further stories (generally a good indicator of a story enjoyed).
"Uncomplicated, cheerful sci fi - overall fun"
A engaging sci fi with a satisfyingly anti-corporate message and an overall upbeat mood although there was the odd bit that I found quite moving. Wil Wheaton is a great narrator - just right for the tone of book. And the fuzzies themselves are rather charming.
This book has a bit of everything, it made happy, sad and laugh. I really could ask for more from a book.
"Engaging super story"
Narration superb Great story rocks along touroughly enjoyed Would love to read a follow up to see how the characters evolved
"Straight five stars"
Scalzi only has four characters in his armoury, but boy they are great characters.
I love the way he inserts clever situations into a twisting plot, that retains momentum throughout.
This is an action story, courtroom drama and moral tale all rolled into one comedic novel.
Listen, enjoy, become a fan.
"A brilliantly Furtastic Novel"
A great reboot of the original Little Furry; it's understandable why the Piper estate agreed to John Scalzi's updated version. Excellently narrated by Wil Wheaton - as always - drawing us into this very well balanced book, with its subtle use of technology. Enabling us to follow the storyline of Furry discovery without being overwhelmed to the point of suffocation by future technologies.
Stop reading me drivelling on about how great yet another John Scalzi's novel is and read it. You'll not only thank me but want a Furry to boot!
Who wouldn't love a Furry
"Lovely retelling of a classic."
My only issue, the reuse of "He said" gets really obvious. Otherwise it was a great reworking of a classic story from the 60s.
Wasn't sure what to expect but took a risk with recommendations from Reddit. I flew through this book. Kept my attention 100% of the time and I was sad it was over. Wil Wheaton was perfect as usual. One of my top 10 books.
"Scalzi is an absolute must read"
This is an absolute fantastic read.Wil Wheaton is an exceptional narrator who brings John Scalzi's brilliant novel to life.I dare you not to fall in love with the Fuzzies.
"Funny and entertaining"
Easy read that's entertaining. It is reminiscent of it's 1962 heritage in a good way. It's got a charm rarely found in a lot of modern sci-fi - it's optimistic. I was surprised by the friendly (cuddly) aliens which was very funny and riveted by the interweaving resolution of the final court room drama. I found it very refreshing set against the slew of boring post/apocalyptic zombie/virus stories flooding the market. Enjoyable read, very well narrated by Will Wheaton (who I'm becoming a fan of for sci-fi books).
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