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The Long Earth Audiobook

The Long Earth: A Novel

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Publisher's Summary

The possibilities are endless. Just be careful what you wish for....

The Western Front, 1916. Private Percy Blakeney wakes up. He is lying on fresh spring grass. He can hear birdsong and the wind in the leaves. Where have the mud, blood, and blasted landscape of no-man's-land gone? For that matter, where has Percy gone?

Madison, Wisconsin, 2015. Police officer Monica Jansson is exploring the burned-out home of a reclusive - some say mad, others allege dangerous - scientist who seems to have vanished. Sifting through the wreckage, Jansson find a curious gadget: a box containing some rudimentary wiring, a three-way switch, and . . . a potato. It is the prototype of an invention that will change the way humankind views the world forever.

The first novel in an exciting new collaboration between Discworld creator Terry Pratchett and the acclaimed SF writer Stephen Baxter, The Long Earth transports readers to the ends of the earth - and far beyond. All it takes is a single step. . . .

©2012 Terry Pratchett, Lyn Pratchett, and Stephen Baxter (P)2012 HarperCollins Publishers

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (1806 )
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  •  
    Mike From Mesa 08-15-13 Member Since 2015
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    "The Long (and Boring) Earth"

    I am not sure exactly what I expected from this book. I suppose I expected the dry British humor of Terry Pratchett and the hard science of Stephen Baxter, but what I got was more like the humor of Stephen Baxter and the hard science of Terry Pratchett. While not a total loss this book was a great disappointment.

    The story, of course, concerns the sudden appearance of multiple copies of Earth easily accessible through the process of "stepping" across the boundary, either with our without a mechanical aid. This concept provided an extraordinary basis for stories - the "first contact" of people from our Earth with those of alternate Earths - and seemed to allow for a series of future books, each based on the same concept but each very different in nature from the others. The book does have the feel of the first book in a series, but none of these other Earths have any human populations so there is nowhere to go with that general concept. Instead the alternate Earths are full of wildlife but no humans. There goes a whole series of "first contacts" and "clash of technologies" stories as concerns other humans. There still is, of course, the possibility of future stories involving contact between human and non-human intelligences, but there is precious little of that in this book and, I suspect, in future books. Instead we have the main characters "stepping" through the alternatives with little purpose other than to see what is there.

    Of course the writing is quite good but I could not but hope for more interesting characters and events. Instead of Stanley searching for Dr Livingston through a dangerous African jungle I have more of the feeling of Stanley searching for the exit from a tame arboretum. Even the "danger" that they find does not seem terribly dangerous and I have no particular interest in reading the second book in the series in spite of the excellent narration by Michael Fenton-Stevens. I should have saved my credit for something more interesting. You might want to also.

    12 of 15 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lore SAN JOSE, CA, United States 04-22-14
    Lore SAN JOSE, CA, United States 04-22-14 Member Since 2008
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    "Interesting but not overly entertaining"

    Terry Pratchett and Stephen Baxter team up to pen this novel with a very interesting premise: Humans figure out how to "step' which allows them to instantly teleport to an infinite number of alternate earths. Since the technology required to build a "stepper" device is readily available to almost everyone this changes civilization as we know it. Economies collapse and governments struggle to deal with the concept of governing across multiple earths.

    This is an interesting concept for sure but the characters created by Pratchett & Baxter are a bit dry and not all that interesting. Pratchett's sense of humor does surface from time to time but those times are too few to carry the day. The story does get more and more interesting as the "Long Earth" is explored but when some larger plot lines eventually emerge the book ends and leaves you hanging.

    Only take the plunge on this one if you are willing to pick up more than one book because as a standalone novel it feels pretty incomplete.

    10 of 13 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Terri Hartsville, SC, United States 09-24-13
    Terri Hartsville, SC, United States 09-24-13 Member Since 2012
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    "And The Story Line Is????????"
    What disappointed you about The Long Earth?

    No plot, no story line.


    What could Terry Pratchett and Stephen Baxter have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Plot would be nice.


    Any additional comments?

    I am trying different genres since I joined Audible and have had success with some books and others are a total waste of time. This would be one of those times. I really do try. I listen well into the book - hoping for it to get better. Never happened with this one. Try as I might, I could not figure out the story line or plot. You are introduced to different sets of characters and they may intersect along the way, but unless they all pile up in the last chapter with a conclusion, the characters were never given enough effort. If you like rambling characters, you will like this book. If you prefer a plot, buy a different book.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    S. Yates 03-23-17
    S. Yates 03-23-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Excellent first book in the series"
    Any additional comments?

    A wonderful book exploring what would happen if humanity not only found out that there were multiple earths in the multiverse, but someone invented a device that would let most humans "step" to adjacent worlds. This plays with the idea that there are countless hypothetical universes and that perhaps in each of them a different set of events took place; some where humanity never developed or a pivotal historical event happened differently; others where we have no moon or dinosaurs weren't entirely wiped out so evolution includes their descendants. This idea is grand enough that the book, which has a plot but also acts as a travelogue, is interesting when it is just cataloging the differing earths. We see these worlds largely through the eyes of Joshua Valiente, a natural stepper who does not need a device to step (a talent that is rare, but not unique). He joins a supposedly reincarnated Tibetan (reincarnated as a sort of AI) named Lopsang (whether he is really reincarnated or simply AI is never resolved by Joshua). Lopsang (and the company he is associated with) contract with Joshua and undertake a tour of the earths, during which they ascertain a threat moving toward our original Earth (the Datum) from the far earths. The book is clearly the first in a series and I look forward to seeing what happens next.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stephen Krzyzanowski Los Angeles 11-02-16
    Stephen Krzyzanowski Los Angeles 11-02-16 Member Since 2015
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    "ONE Complaint"

    This was a fantastic story. Not typical Pratchett whimsy, but highly imaginative. My only gripe is with the narrator. He's really not too bad, but this is a story full of American characters and he's British. As I got deeper into the book, the bad dialects started to wear on me and I became painfully aware of the miscues. I wouldn't do well voicing 15 different British characters either. The main character is named Joshua and somewhere around the 50th time you hear it pronounced "Joshu-er" it's irritating.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Niles Jacobsen Sumter, SC, United States 06-18-15
    Niles Jacobsen Sumter, SC, United States 06-18-15 Member Since 2010
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    "A long journey through the long earth"

    When a scientist discovers how people can "step" into parallel worlds, he puts the schematic diagram on the internet to prevent any government from monopolizing the technology. Soon, a slew of new problems arise that governments around the world must deal with. Some people, like Joshua Valiente, find they can step without the stepper box. Joshua and Lobsang, a Buddhist computer program that was ruled by a court of law to be human, set out on a journey to see just how many iterations there are on the long earth. The story was humorous in places, but at times I found I had to force myself to continue reading. I read other books by Terry Pratchett that I thought were very good, but I would have to rate 'The Long Earth' as just average.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    G. Parish 02-13-15
    G. Parish 02-13-15 Member Since 2013
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    "The long story"

    This is original SciFi. It tells a unique story and really does some interesting things with it, but the story does often drag in terms of length. I'm not sure if I'll get the next one in the series, but I'm not thoroughly opposed to it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elle OREGON 05-18-14
    Elle OREGON 05-18-14
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    "Poorly written. Boo to Pratchett and Baxter"

    How can two well known authors get together and pawn this pile of caca off on the reading/listening public?

    For Shame!!

    The long and eloquent review written by Katie Johnson, entitled "Sliders meets Prometheus" covers all the negative issues with this potentially dynamic series written by two of the primary sci/fi writers today.

    The heavy thinkers in the novel are amazingly dumb and the book so obviously is a prequil to another book or series. NOTHING is resolved. A few minor loose threads is fine, especially when we now it’s going to be a series. However an entire book dedicated to nothing more than setting the series up is a terrible disservice to the constant reader-one who buys books based on a name alone.

    As a sci/fi reader since the 1950s and junior high school libraries, I am appalled at the way these authors have treated we readers. Are we dumb? Readers who are unable to easily figure out obvious outcomes? I was so dissapointed in this book that I decided to send it back. Audible/Amazon can take a hit for this bad novel.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    JustinD 10-23-17
    JustinD 10-23-17 Member Since 2017
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    "dope"

    very sad story. Stephen Baxter and Terry Pratchett are definitely good at what they do. To me, very reminiscent of Dan Simmons Hyperion.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    NixRedux Auburn, WA 07-27-17
    NixRedux Auburn, WA 07-27-17 Member Since 2016
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    "Riveting, start to finish"

    Wonderful to imagine what life would be life of there were more than one earth.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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