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Publisher's Summary

Writing separately, Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle are responsible for a number of science fiction classics, such as the Hugo and Nebula Award-winning Ringworld, Debt of Honor, and The Integral Trees. Together they have written the critically acclaimed best-sellers Inferno, Footfall, and The Legacy of Heorot, among others.

The Mote In God's Eye is their acknowledged masterpiece, an epic novel of mankind's first encounter with alien life that transcends the genre. No lesser an authority than Robert A. Heinlein called it "possibly the finest science fiction novel I have ever read".

©1991 Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle; (P)2009 Audible, Inc.

Critic Reviews

  • All-Time Best Science Fiction Novels (Locus Magazine)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.0 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    2,102
  • 4 Stars
    2,141
  • 3 Stars
    1,078
  • 2 Stars
    314
  • 1 Stars
    177

Performance

  • 4.1 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    1,682
  • 4 Stars
    1,535
  • 3 Stars
    628
  • 2 Stars
    146
  • 1 Stars
    90

Story

  • 4.1 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    1,710
  • 4 Stars
    1,380
  • 3 Stars
    722
  • 2 Stars
    219
  • 1 Stars
    91
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  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Andy
  • Ohatchee, AL, United States
  • 06-03-13

Science Fiction " Old school"

It was a nice straight forward story in the classic tradition with a feel of being written in the 1950's culture but with out the "trust me it works" explanation of technology of the time. The narration was very well done also. It will be listened too many more times in the future.

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  • William
  • Fayetteville, NC
  • 05-17-13

Classic Sci-Fi

Would you be willing to try another book from Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle ? Why or why not?

I have read both Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle in the past, putting them together was a great idea.

What three words best describe L J Ganser’s performance?

Very Well Done

Any additional comments?

I really enjoyed the twists that the plot took once you met the people of the mote.

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A great classic of far in the future

An awesome science fiction classic I thoroughly enjoyed. The Mote in God's Eye is something like a thousand years into the future, and humans have made a massive galactic empire. The story contains enough information to give a good idea on how the empire works, and how technology has developed. What I found interesting is how predictions about technology a thousand years from now were made forty years ago, without detracting from the entertainment value of the story.

A large part of the book is conversations between characters and aliens, with communications and negotiations being very relevant. At some points, much needed adventure and action emerges. All in all, what I enjoyed the most was the descriptions of the alien species' appearance, history, and behavior. The aliens were ludicrous enough to generate an almost comical tone at times, while still maintaining a intricate plot and setting

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  • John
  • Lake Albert, Australia
  • 05-10-13

Great Sci-Fi!

Great story, well thought out and intriguing all the way. Characters and situations are quite believable for the genre. It's an enjoyable ride!

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

plot not linear

Would you try another book from Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle and/or L J Ganser?

At the end of the first download break, a character dies, who is unmentioned at the beginniing of audible's part 2. I listened to that first section several times and decided the plot was time traveling without me. too many holes in the plot line--I'm just not that smart. So many have remarked that htis was the best SF ever written. It had been too long since purchase to return it, but I was able to return, unlisted to, The Gripping Hand, a sequel.

Has The Mote in God's Eye turned you off from other books in this genre?

see above

Would you be willing to try another one of L J Ganser’s performances?

no--returned one I had purchased.

  • Overall
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  • Chris
  • Timaru, New Zealand
  • 04-15-13

One of my favourite novels

What made the experience of listening to The Mote in God's Eye the most enjoyable?

A great story, with rich descriptive language and a great storyline.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Mote in God's Eye?

The midshipmen's journey on Mote Prime

What three words best describe L J Ganser’s performance?

Mediocre at best. Inconsistencies in characters voices, some major mispronounciations ( e.g. "murkeson's" eye instead of murchison's eye), shocking attempt at a Scottish accent.

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  • Performance
  • Story

Missing depth

What did you like best about The Mote in God's Eye? What did you like least?

First encounter with intelligent aliens aught to be a thrilling, intense and astonishing, and after reading this book I am a little disappointed. The plot isn't too bad, but the characters and dialogue could be more engaging.

this book is worth reading because of the plots and secretive nature of humans.

What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

The most interesting aspect of the story is the aliens themselves and how the humans treat them; what they try to keep away from them, and what they chose to share.

Politics and, surprisingly enough, the action scenes where not very interesting.

Which scene was your favorite?

The first encounter with a live alien.

If this book were a movie would you go see it?

Yes, probably.

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Dated

The story takes place in the third millennium, but is nonetheless filled with 20th century tropes. Entertaining space opera, but dated.

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  • Ed
  • Newark, DE, United States
  • 03-05-13

Read it to find out what a Mote was ;-)

It could cut down on the new concepts/words introduced in thia book. Too many to really keep track of.

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  • Marsha
  • Tierra Verde, FL, United States
  • 02-22-13

The only book I can't finish

This is the first book in 50 or 60, that I just can't finish. It sounds like it probably has a good plot, but it's all driven by one dialog after another, giving long, history accounts to fill us in on where we are. Too tedious to finish. I know it has to be a good book. Just not my style I guess.