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To Your Scattered Bodies Go, Riverworld Saga, Book 1 | [Philip Jose Farmer]

To Your Scattered Bodies Go, Riverworld Saga, Book 1

For explorer Richard Francis Burton, Alice Liddell Hargreaves - the inspiration for Alice in Wonderland - and the rest of humanity, death is nothing like they expected. Instead of heaven, hell, or even the black void of nothingness, all of the 36 billion people who ever lived on Earth are simultaneously resurrected on a world that has been transformed into a giant river valley.
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Publisher's Summary

Original and provocative, To Your Scattered Bodies Go won the 1971 Hugo Award for outstanding science fiction novel and has continued to be a favorite of generations of new listeners.

For explorer Richard Francis Burton, Alice Liddell Hargreaves - the inspiration for Alice in Wonderland - and the rest of humanity, death is nothing like they expected. Instead of heaven, hell, or even the black void of nothingness, all of the 36 billion people who ever lived on Earth are simultaneously resurrected on a world that has been transformed into a giant river valley.

With hunger and disease eliminated, Burton and the others appear to have everything they need - except an answer to the question "Why?"

Both swashbuckling adventure and insightful examination into mankind's constant search for answers to the unanswerable, To Your Scattered Bodies Go is voiced by narrator Paul Hecht to emphasize every thrilling moment of discovery.

©1971 Philip José Farmer; (P)2000 Recorded Books

What the Critics Say

  • Hugo Award, Best Novel, 1972

"One of the most imaginative worlds in science fiction." (Booklist)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.8 (482 )
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3.9 (277 )
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4.0 (267 )
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  •  
    Bruce Dublin, OH, United States 12-07-11
    Bruce Dublin, OH, United States 12-07-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Fugetit"

    I read this as a teenager but had no recollection other than I remember enjoying it and several of the sequels. Just goes to show kids don't know much about literature.

    The concept is interesting but character development is poor. If you're a feminist- I am not- this read will repulse you. This book reminds me of Robert Heinlein's general pontification and interest in free love with women with no brains. Moreover, Mr. Farmer is likely a socialist considering his apparent opinions about human motivation.

    Interestingly, Hermann Goering plays a prominent role in this book. He is important in the book I'm listening to now, THE WINDS OF WAR, of course.

    I might have ventured another credit on the sequels but several reader's reviews disuaded me.

    There are thousands of books, including scifi and fantasy, beter worth your time.

    6 of 12 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J. Hansen Denmark 01-18-10
    J. Hansen Denmark 01-18-10 Member Since 2014

    iwantit

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great classic"

    Thrilling and imaginative. Dear publisher & Audible: please release the rest of the Riverworld series very soon.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Richard 06-18-13
    Richard 06-18-13
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    "Not sure why this is considered such a classic"

    Older sci-fi has a certain tone. I find that most sci-fi written before about 1950 reads like an adventure story that occurs in a strange setting. If you've read Lewis' "That Hideous Strength," Burroughs' mars series, or Verne's "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea," you probably know what I'm talking about. This book falls right in line with that particular tone, despite being written in the 70's.

    I have come across this book (and the series as a whole) several times on lists of important sci-fi works. I frankly don't understand why it merits mentioning.

    The story just isn't that compelling. The main character is Sir Richard Francis Burton, who is an actual historical figure. If you're a big fan of his, maybe you'll like this book more than I did. Since I had barely heard of him, and basically couldn't care less about him, this just seems like a weird story about a guy who acts like kind of a jerk.

    Perhaps someone doing an academic exploration of this novel would call it a "Fish-out-of-water story exploring the limits and eventual breakdown of Victorian manners." I just thought it was dull.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Steve Metung, Australia 11-24-10
    Steve Metung, Australia 11-24-10 Member Since 2010
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    "Dated"

    I remember this as the first in a series I read a long time ago and loved. However on rehearing it now it seems written a bit.....old?

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Patrick 03-24-14
    Patrick 03-24-14 Member Since 2013
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    "Surpirsingly Interesting."

    A well-written and interesting take on a non-traditional look at life after death and the search for meaning.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lauren sarasota, FL, USA 08-08-09
    Lauren sarasota, FL, USA 08-08-09 Member Since 2013
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    "To your scattered bodies go"

    Horrible ending. Just drops off...does not leave you wanting to find out what happens next. Poorly written. Try Time's Eye by Arthur C. Clark instead.

    2 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    nicki Enid, OK, United States 08-01-10
    nicki Enid, OK, United States 08-01-10
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    "huh"

    to violent and I was tired of everyone dying and coming back. I could not see the value in it.

    0 of 8 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 11-17 of 17 results PREVIOUS12NEXT
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  • Grace
    London, United Kingdom
    4/1/10
    Overall
    "Great story, well told"

    This was my first introduction to Phillip Jose Farmer, and I have to say I loved it. Great science fiction writing, with a fascinating central idea, well-developed and entertaining characters, and fluent writing. I would recommend this to anyone looking for some great science fiction writing.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Sean
    Nottingham, United Kingdom
    10/10/14
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    "Seriously, all SF fans should try this."
    What made the experience of listening to To Your Scattered Bodies Go, Riverworld Saga, Book 1 the most enjoyable?

    I've loved this book for many years - it is one of my very favourites and always makes me think.. "what would I do if I was there... oh... I am there, wonder what I AM doing?" :) It is one of those books that delivers a premise so unusual and profound that it will stick with you.


    What other book might you compare To Your Scattered Bodies Go, Riverworld Saga, Book 1 to, and why?

    I have always thought that (the somehow often overlooked) author Edmund Cooper wrote several books that remind me of Scattered Bodies - particularly 'Seahorse in the sky', but also 'Transit' and the magnificent 'Overman Culture'.
    Obviously, Farmer's sequel, 'The Fabulous Riverboat' is a must read after this one and 'The Dark Design' (although I remember being less engaged with that one.
    Other Farmer books might shock the reader expecting more of 'Scattered' but I particularly liked 'Strange Relations' - for the strong reader, Flesh and Blown are fascinating...


    Which scene did you most enjoy?

    Tricky, I love the initial scene of resurrection; but the ones that probably stick in the memory most are the 'awakening in the chamber', the 'giganthropes at the head of the river' and 'the dreamgum episode'.


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

    Gwen dying, Goring's dreams.


    Any additional comments?

    I greatly enjoyed the 'voice' - well done. Next one please - Riverboat. BTW - there was a film made of the book but it is not great :(

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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