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Calculating God Audiobook

Calculating God

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Publisher's Summary

In this Hugo-nominated novel, an alien walks into a museum and asks if he can see a paleontologist. But the arachnid ET hasn't come aboard a rowboat with the Pope and Stephen Hawking (although His Holiness does request an audience later). Landing at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto, the spacefarer, Hollus, asks to compare notes on mass extinctions with resident dino-scientist Thomas Jericho. A shocked Jericho finds that not only does life exist on other planets, but that every civilization in the galaxy has experienced extinction events at precisely the same time. Armed with that disconcerting information (and a little help from a grand unifying theory), the alien informs Jericho, almost dismissively, that the primary goal of modern science is to discover why God has behaved as he has and to determine his methods.

BONUS AUDIO: Author Robert J. Sawyer explains how the creationism vs. evolution debate informed the writing of Calculating God.

  • 2009 Audie Award Winner, Science Fiction/Fantasy
  • ©2000 by Robert J. Sawyer; (P)2008 Audible, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"Is Sawyer Canada's answer to Michael Crichton? Very possibly yes." (Montreal Gazette)
"Jonathan Davis...is one of our very best narrators and this is a fine performance. I was rapt the entire time, and even near tears at one moment in the book." (sffaudio.com; named an SFFaudio Essential)
"Jonathan Davis portrays a thoughtful and quietly introspective Jericho....As the conversation with Hollus continues, Davis keeps a steady pace and reflects the intellectual engagement of both characters. He presents the alien's speech as lightly studied, a fitting style for a non-English speaker who coordinates his speech between two mouths." (AudioFile)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (3288 )
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4.3 (2576 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Josh P 01-17-17
    Josh P 01-17-17
    ratings
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    4
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    Story
    "Great story with some amazing concepts of the origin and purpose of the universe"

    The author does a great job of blending science and science fiction. He's obviously done his research (even if he does take a few liberties) and creates an interesting tale of the story of a grand designer. A few scientific missteps here and there (a supernova's energy from a star 400 light years away somehow reading earth in a matter of weeks and a convenient dismissal of the multiverse theory) but it all works to create a fascinating story. Highly recommend!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 10-19-16 Member Since 2015
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    16
    4
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    Story
    "thought provoking"

    Really neat plot idea. At lot of impressive science. very original, great story and characters. I'd give it 5 stars but my only complaints would be it's difficult to picture a lot of the scenes (it would be easier to read as a book, also considering a lot of the heavy material that really makes you think) and it was a little bit slow moving.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    BRYAN 10-16-16
    BRYAN 10-16-16
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    "Like the idea of God it leaves something to be desired."

    GOOD BOOK!
    I think I remember some of the reviews saying this book upset Atheists and Theists alike; but I'm not sure why? I don't think either party is portrayed "negatively". Though I suppose neither side gets heir way either?
    I enjoyed the book thoroughly and think it's worth your time it does provoke one to think outside their party lines but does not put the exclamation that I thought it might have had the book made a more dramatic conclusion.
    I do recommend the book though it was very well read and a fascinating thought experiment into the "what if".

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Scott Glendale, WI, United States 10-10-16
    Scott Glendale, WI, United States 10-10-16 Member Since 2014
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    Story
    "Wow!"

    I've been listening to this genre for many years and this book is among the top two or three of the 100s I've listened to. The narration was spot on and the this story is amazing! This is an absolute must listen!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Matthew Gregory 09-29-16 Member Since 2015
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    43
    11
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    Story
    "Seriously? Ricky?"

    This would have been an interesting book if the main plot devise wasn't the protagonists' bout with cancer and his relationship with his adopted son Ricky.
    Seriously, an advanced alien species(apparently not advanced enough to cure cancer) lands on the earth, and half of the book is about how this one flavorless and creatively stunted scientist can't come to grips with his lung cancer.
    Toward the end of the book the main character is recording a video for his addopted son Ricky to play on his 18 th birthday; and you can't help but think it would be much more poinient if the kids' name wasn't Ricky and he wasn't adopted. Seriously: It's a made up story, make it up better.
    The name of this book should have been called "One Athiest Dingdongs Dramatic Reaction to Cancer. Oh, and There Are Some Intelligent Design Aliens".
    If you make it halfway trough the book without concluding Ricky is the dumbest name ever, then your name is probably Ricky.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Erin Conley, Georgia, United States 09-25-16
    Erin Conley, Georgia, United States 09-25-16 Member Since 2011

    iPodLuvR

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    Story
    "Great story. Awesome narrator."

    Loved this book. Narrator really brought it life. Sawyer's thoughts on morality, creation, and use of well-researched scientific concepts made this book more real than average Sci-fi.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Reamingthy 09-20-16
    Reamingthy 09-20-16 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "You Miscalculated Bob!"
    What would have made Calculating God better?

    More action. More suspense. It was just boring ... and mildly depressing.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Robert J. Sawyer again?

    Probably not.


    Any additional comments?

    I confess, I didn't finish the book. I got about 2/3 of the way through before I felt like I was wasting too much of my life waiting for this book to get good. The book just did not have enough action, or suspense, or anything approaching excitementt for me. If you like science, and are intrigued by the interplay/antagonism between science and faith, you might find this book interesting, but don't count on it. I think you're more likely to find it depressing.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    james 09-11-16
    james 09-11-16 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Amazing read"

    Since discovering audible I've been waiting to stumble upon a sci-fi story this intelligent. Amazing dialogue creating endearing characters struggling with modern dilemmas/topics.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 09-11-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Church camp for nerds"

    Doesn't work as Sci Fi.
    Very dull discourse format for storytelling. But if you lack a scientific background it's an ok intro to several concepts in astrobiology; "Goldilocks zone" and colligative properties of water among many others.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Markh 09-04-16
    Markh 09-04-16
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    "Fascinating, totally engaging. It's a lovely story which will force you to think about very important things. Don't miss it. I"

    I loved it! It takes a lot to keep my attention, but from the start, I was eager to listen.
    Extremely serious stuff, for adults, and yet time and again I found myself laughing out loud. Extremely good use of a great imagination.
    I guess I made it clear that you should read and recommend it. Mark

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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