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Hominids Audiobook

Hominids: The Neanderthal Parallax, Book 1

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Publisher's Summary

Neanderthals have developed a radically different civilization on a parallel Earth. A Neanderthal physicist, Ponter Boddit, accidentally passes from his universe into a Canadian underground research facility. Fortunately, a team of human scientists, including expert paleo-anthropologist Mary Vaughan, promptly identifies and warmly receives Ponter. Solving the language problem and much else is a mini-computer, called a Companion, implanted in the brain of every Neanderthal. A computerized guardian spirit, however, doesn't eliminate cross-cultural confusion; permanent male-female sexuality, rape, and overpopulation are all alien to Ponter. Nor can it help his housemate and fellow scientist back in his world, Adikor Huld, when the authorities charge Adikor with his murder.

BONUS AUDIO: Author Robert J. Sawyer explains why Ponter Boddit is his favorite among all the characters he's created.

Hunt and gather: listen to more in the Neanderthal Parallax trilogy.

©2002 by Robert J. Sawyer; (P)2008 Audible, Inc.

What the Critics Say

  • Hugo Award Winner, Best Novel, 2003

"Sawyer is a writer of boundless confidence and bold scientific extrapolation." (The New York Times)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (1621 )
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4.2 (937 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Robert van Nostrand Halifax, NS, Canada 03-23-16
    Robert van Nostrand Halifax, NS, Canada 03-23-16 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Inspiring mix of Quantum Science and fantasy"
    Would you listen to Hominids again? Why?

    Yes, I would/will continue listening to the series. I never read the same book twice.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Believable story, built on a foundation of nuclear science, archaeology and fantasy, mixed with a hint of romance. Foundations of humanity and religion were clever.


    Have you listened to any of Jonathan Davis and Robert J. Sawyer ’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Not yet.


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

    Pretty much.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sharon Foley Massachusetts, USA 02-20-16
    Sharon Foley Massachusetts, USA 02-20-16 Member Since 2015
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    4
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    "Enthralling! Can't wait to get started on Book 2!"
    Any additional comments?

    The premise of a parallel universe in which the Neaderthal species was dominate is brilliant. I enjoyed getting to know Ponter and his world. Can't wait to listen to the rest of the series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jocelyn 01-15-16
    Jocelyn 01-15-16 Member Since 2016
    ratings
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    13
    5
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Can't wait to hear the next one!"

    The performance was overall really good, just some niggling little things I wish he'd have corrected - Sudbury is pronounced "SudBIRry" not "SUD-berry" and others. His French Canadian accent for a main character, Louise, was more of a Parisian French accent which I couldn't really blame him for except that he did so well with a host of other accents!

    I'm a Robert Sawyer fan and this one is among his best I've read. I love a SCI-do book that's smart enough to speculate about what other civilizations would look like with one small change. This one doesn't disappoint! I'm impressed at how well he wrote the Neanderthal characters - they were very real, just as much as the human characters. And speaking as a Canadian scientist, Sawyer always captures the bureaucracies so well!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    G. Amundsen Alaska 11-10-15
    G. Amundsen Alaska 11-10-15 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Good narrator, lacklustre story"

    I enjoyed Calculating God, so decided to check this out...not impressed. There's a lot of telling, not a lot of showing in the storytelling, and some of the preachy anti religious messages were over the top and unbelievable. I enjoy a good discussion; I do not enjoy using dialogue to put weak, contrived arguments in others' mouths. As far as the rest of the story goes, I find the account of Neanderthal judicial proceedings alternately frustrating and boring. On the human side, a male author using graphic rape as a character building set up for romance really kills the mood for me. The romance(s) feel contrived and profoundly unhealthy, and the quarantine sounds like an excuse not to have to show us more of the interesting repercussions on the world at large.

    In case it wasn't clear, I don't recommend this one.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kasey 10-10-15
    Kasey 10-10-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "never disappoints"

    Ponter is a great character and his comnection with Mary was.lovely and needs exploring. thank the gods for book 2!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark Wandrey Norene TN 06-29-15
    Mark Wandrey Norene TN 06-29-15 Member Since 2007

    Mark Wandrey - Novelist

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "great book, interesting culture and story"

    I loved it! I have read this series before, and it remains engaging and thought-provoking.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Will 06-24-15
    Will 06-24-15 Member Since 2017
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    79
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    "Excellent listen"

    This book has the right amount of interesting ideas, science and story-telling to be an all-time favorite.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Allen 04-26-15
    Allen 04-26-15 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Absolutely excellent"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Hominids to be better than the print version?

    Even though the story is excellent, I imagine that listening to the book narrated by a talented professional, as this book was, brought it more to life.


    What did you like best about this story?

    It causes the reader to rethink our social behavior, especially in the area of crime and religion.


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

    I found it hard to take breaks. I looked for every opportunity to continue listening.


    Any additional comments?

    I'm anxiously anticipating Book II in the series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    SH Milpitas, CA 03-31-15
    SH Milpitas, CA 03-31-15

    A traveler

    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
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    "Progressive Science Fiction -"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    Feminist or any otherg roup who have a strong hatred of men


    What character would you cut from Hominids?

    Mary- Do we really need more feminist victim characters?


    Any additional comments?

    Listening to authors intro I should have realized where the book might lead. Unfortunately he is from Toronto. . Toronto is one of North Americas most dangerous cities for men. The novel denigrates men and portrays them as sexist rapist, the only exception is the Neanderthal who is a Sensitive New-Age Guy

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    West02139 Cambridge, MA 03-11-15
    West02139 Cambridge, MA 03-11-15 Member Since 2010

    West02139

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Wanted to love it but..."

    A lot of people have commented on the politics and religion in this series. My dislike isn't at all due to the inclusion of controversial topics, but rather due to the incredibly heavy-handed approach the author took to those issues. Among other problems, he apparently has not learned the show-don't-tell maxim regarding writing, which is what makes his coverage of ethical issues feel so preachy and off-putting (and as a politically-liberal female scientist, born in the US and raised in Canada, and a sexual assault survivor, I'm probably the choir he thinks he's preaching to). Benign example: cop is shouting/yelling at Ponter and then Sawyer writes "two more cops had appeared at the entrance to the interrogation room, presumably coming in the response to the shouts." The bit about presumably coming in response to the shouts is unnecessary. And since Sawyer does that with ethical issues - instead of just describing the responses and actions of the characters and letting the reader think about them, he "explains" them- it gets old fast. His characters are also incredibly stereotyped and one dimensional. He doesn't address the various nonsensical aspects of his characters either (ie. violence supposedly having been bred out of the neanderthals and yet in the only two current-day examples included in the books, they choose violence).

    The premise is intriguing, which is what got me to halfway through book 2 before giving up, but that's about all I can say as a positive, aside from the narrator, who is fine.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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