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Publisher's Summary

The Foundation novels of Isaac Asimov are one of the great masterworks of science fiction. Unsurpassed for their unique blend of nonstop action, daring ideas, and extensive world-building, they chronicle the struggle of a courageous group of men and women to preserve humanity's light against an inexorable tide of darkness and violence.

Led by its founding father, the great psychohistorian Hari Seldon, and taking advantage of its superior science and technology, the Foundation has survived the greed and barbarism of its neighboring warrior-planets. Yet now it must face the Empire, still the mightiest force in the Galaxy even in its death throes. When an ambitious general determined to restore the Empire's glory turns the vast Imperial fleet toward the Foundation, the only hope for the small planet of scholars and scientists lies in the prophecies of Hari Seldon.

But not even Hari Seldon could have predicted the birth of the extraordinary creature called The Mule, a mutant intelligence with a power greater than a dozen battle fleets, a power that can turn the strongest-willed human into an obedient slave.

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

©1991 Isaac Asimov (P)2010 Random House

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    2,133
  • 4 Stars
    947
  • 3 Stars
    281
  • 2 Stars
    37
  • 1 Stars
    10

Performance

  • 4.6 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    1,851
  • 4 Stars
    714
  • 3 Stars
    202
  • 2 Stars
    32
  • 1 Stars
    10

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    1,836
  • 4 Stars
    686
  • 3 Stars
    245
  • 2 Stars
    33
  • 1 Stars
    13
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  • Lynwood
  • Saint George, SC, United States
  • 06-17-12

Masterpiece

Books in the original Foundation trilogy need no introduction; they have stood the test of time and are broadly accepted as some of the greatest masterpieces in the science fiction genre. You can find millions of words written about these books all over the Internet.

I have some comments that relate to frustrations I encountered while reading reviews for this book. First, I wish that I could comment on reviews that others have written like I can on Amazon. What follows would more appropriately be entered as such a comment, but it's here because there is no other way to respond to existing reviews.

To Joseph: First of all, it is misleading and unhelpful to give a book a poor rating because you didn't realize it was part of a trilogy. You are supposed to review the quality of the work, not vent your frustration at being unaware that the book is part of a series. That's your problem, not the book's.

Secondly, it would have taken you all of 5 minutes to discover not only the series to which this book belongs, but also the published order of all the books in the series, with a simple Google or Wikipedia search. This is made even easier by the fact that this is one of the most famous serials written during the entire 20th century in any genre, and at least in the top 5 of most famous science fiction serials of all time.

That said... it would not hurt my feelings if Audible would include both the chronological order and published order of books that belong to a series. It would really be nice to be able to add all books in a series to my wish list with a single click, and for those books to remain grouped together in the wish list so it is clear that they are all members of the same series. That would make it easy to buy them all at once too. Keeping them ordered by original book publication date within the grouping would also be VERY helpful. NOT the date the audio version was published -- the date the ORIGINAL BOOK was FIRST published.

Chronological order is interesting but not terribly useful, because you do not want to read them that way. The author expects you to read them in PUBLISHED order, so that is what you should do for maximum effect. For example, there are essentially "spoilers" in prequels that will ruin mystery and suspense created in the books published earlier in the series.

For anyone not willing to type the words "foundation series published order" into Google, below is the published order of the series. This is the proper and expected order in which to read them.

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

Enjoy!

33 of 33 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Great story

While some of the style and plot elements are a bit dated the storyline is still interesting and relevant. Great story telling. Asimov was a genius!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • thomas
  • charlotte, NC, United States
  • 08-14-14

Sci Fi Classic(s)

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes I would. The audible version is stellar and these books (Foundation Series) are a must read for any fan of Sci Fi or speculative ficiton.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Everyone of them. Superbly done.

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

I have read some negative reviews of Scott Brick and I don't get it. I think he is terrific, he lends the right tone of drama to material that lends itself to that type of delivery. He was great in the Dune Series and his work here is equally well done.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Not really. These books are logical puzzles, with lots of characters and sub-plots. The fun is in keeping track of it all, in a world that Asimov has built just for you.

Any additional comments?

This is a must read. Audible has done a great job with the Asimov books. I suggest reading reading the Robot Series and the Galactic Series first, then delving into the Foundation Series. However read Prelude to Foundation last, which is largely background information.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Masterpiece

Books in the original Foundation trilogy need no introduction; they have stood the test of time and are broadly accepted as some of the greatest masterpieces in the science fiction genre. You can find millions of words written about these books all over the Internet.

I have some comments that relate to frustrations I encountered while reading reviews for this book. First, I wish that I could comment on reviews that others have written like I can on Amazon. What follows would more appropriately be entered as such a comment, but it's here because there is no other way to respond to existing reviews.

To Joseph: First of all, it is misleading and unhelpful to give a book a poor rating because you didn't realize it was part of a trilogy. You are supposed to review the quality of the work, not vent your frustration at being unaware that the book is part of a series. That's your problem, not the book's.

Secondly, it would have taken you all of 5 minutes to discover not only the series to which this book belongs, but also the published order of all the books in the series, with a simple Google or Wikipedia search. This is made even easier by the fact that this is one of the most famous serials written during the entire 20th century in any genre, and at least in the top 5 of most famous science fiction serials of all time.

That said... it would not hurt my feelings if Audible would include both the chronological order and published order of books that belong to a series. It would really be nice to be able to add all books in a series to my wish list with a single click, and for those books to remain grouped together in the wish list so it is clear that they are all members of the same series. That would make it easy to buy them all at once too. Keeping them ordered by original book publication date within the grouping would also be VERY helpful. NOT the date the audio version was published -- the date the ORIGINAL BOOK was FIRST published.

Chronological order is interesting but not terribly useful, because you do not want to read them that way. The author expects you to read them in PUBLISHED order, so that is what you should do for maximum effect. For example, there are essentially "spoilers" in prequels that will ruin mystery and suspense created in the books published earlier in the series.

For anyone not willing to type the words "foundation series published order" into Google, below is the published order of the series. This is the proper and expected order in which to read them.

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

Enjoy!

8 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Shukhrat
  • Martinez, GA, United States
  • 01-24-11

Excellent book

It is second book from the trilogy. Not as thrilling as the third one (Second foundation), it is still very interesting and entertaining. Scott Brick is an excellent narrator and his narration is flawless. I am glad that I bought this book, it was true fun to listen.

6 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Fantastic Story with Lackluster narration

Asimov's stories are so enthralling and represent some of the foundational science fiction works of this century. "Foundation and Empire" is an excellent follow up to "Foundation" that should serve to further pull the reader into his galaxy spanning epic. My only complaint is with the narration of this audiobook. Scott Brick, while an excellent orator who is easy to listen to and understand, makes little effort to differentiate between speakers and the sometimes strange phrasing makes it difficult to follow the story at times. I found myself wondering how so much time in the story has passed with such little time between paragraphs and conversations to sound like it was one character talking to themselves. That being said, the overall quality of this audiobook is still excellent and most listeners should be able to see past the narration which again, only struggles at times.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Classic!

Quite simply, this book is the masterpiece that it's held to be. While I've always liked Asimov, I don't think I've truly appreciated him until now.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

NOT AS HAPPY AS I WOULD LIKE TO BE

I feel that when a BOOK IS OFFERED, if it is part of a SERIES THAT A STATEMENT BE MADE AS TO WHAT PART OF THE SERIES IT IS !!!!!

This is the Second book in the series and it needs / you should have some knowledge of the First book to make some sense when listening to this Audio Book. This series was originaly a TRILOGY. The series should be read as ( FOUNDATION, FOUNDATION AND EMPIRE, SECOND FOUNDATION ). There are also two additional sequels to the series ( FOUNDATION'S EDGE AND FOUNDATION AND EARTH ). And two prequels
( PRELUDE TO FOUNDATION AND FOWARD THE FOUNDATION ). The sequels and prequels are not required for the " FOUNDATION / EMPIRE SERIES ". They just make good reading.

I KNOW THIS INFORMATION TO BE CORRECT AS I HAVE FIVE OF THESE BOOKS [ PRINTED VERSIONS ].

65 of 107 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Just as great as the first reading!

I have read all of Asimov's three series'. The Robot Series, Foundation Series, and Empire. True Visionary and, such magnificent prose. Truly worthy of revisiting!

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Brilliant for 1952!

Modern stories like Jessica Jones take ideas from this story. Interestingly it’s his second foundation book where a strong female lead is involved. Great reading by Scott.

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  • Peter
  • 03-01-11

Better than the first book

A magnificent book that surpasses the first in the series, although both books are superb. The Foundation is in trouble and Hari Seldon's prophecies are at risk from a mutant intelligence he could not have predicted. Hope is turned towards the revelation of a second foundation but discovering its location could prove its downfall as dark forces are also interested in it.

This book is different from the first in that it is not so split up into shorter stories (five in the first book) that cover hundreds of years of history. This book consists of two stories ('The General' and 'The Mule') and as such I enjoyed it more since I could get better involved in the characters and longer plot than the fragmented structure of the first book. Both of these books are sci-fi at its best, though.

This book was a real pleasure to listen to, all the more enjoyable for the great narration by Scott Brick.

13 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • SCH
  • 01-23-12

Asimov Foundation and Empire

Simply put I really enjoyed this, I have been a fan of Asimov for years and have read this book conventionally more than once. The narration is clear and fits the classic sci fi feel.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Story
  • Mr. M. Stephenson
  • 11-29-15

A sci-fi classic

If you want to hear an epic science fiction story this is the one. Asimov creates a complete galaxy with immense characters and worlds which pull you into their story. I continue to come back to this series again and again for over thirty years and it still gives me a sense of awe every time. Scott Brick is also a complete narrator bringing Asimov's series to life.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Ioannis
  • 07-20-15

Excellent

Asimov in his finest. The story was compelling, the voice actor phenomenal, and the overall experience wonderful. Would undoubtedly recommend!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Datoria
  • 05-28-15

classic

I already lived this book, but the reader is so good too. It's required reading for Sci Fi fans!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Andreas
  • 05-19-15

Great story..

Great concept and well narrated.. If you like classic science fiction this is the book for you. I would strongly recommend

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Neil Stoker
  • 11-17-17

Classic Asimov

Follows the usual style: very ponderous tedious style, starts slow but builds excitement over time.

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  • Reginald pelle
  • 11-15-17

Outstanding

The joy of Asimov's work is both compelling, amazing and outstanding. Worth listening to, over and over again!

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  • Mr
  • 09-07-16

Not as good as the 1st book.

Feels dated in a lot of ways, and I guessed the ending, so was hard going. Probably won't get the next book in the series.

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  • Lee
  • 04-24-16

slightly more hard going than the first book

Foundation book 1 was a classic piece of SF. I found this a bit more hard going and whilst it picked up at the end, was a bit of a slog at times. friends reliably inform me it picks up again in the 3rd book, but I felt this wasn't on par with the first.

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  • Peter
  • 01-16-17

A Reading Must...

An Azimov Classic... It would be as impossible for me to add anything to the plaudits already bestowed for the Author and the Trilogy as it would be for me to write a story even nearing the mind opening brilliance of Issac Asimov...

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Adm TeKnoMan
  • 05-18-15

This is what happens when an unstoppable force ...

This is what happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object, depicted in amazing detail. When the David & Goliath of ideals meet and the difference that can be made by one person, how one single person can change the course of a predictable future. The question is, will the change be for good or ill?