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Publisher's Summary

A hero without peer or scruples, Sam Gunn has a nose for trouble, money, and women, though not necessarily in that order. A man with the ego (and stature) of a Napoleon, the business acumen of a P. T. Barnum, and the raging hormones of a teenage boy, Sam is the finest astronaut NASA ever trained and dumped. But more than money, more than women, Sam Gunn loves justice—and he really does love money and women.

Whether he’s suing the Pope, helping twin sisters entangled in the virtual sex trade, or on trial for his life on charges of interplanetary genocide, you can be sure of one thing: this is one space jockey who’ll meet every challenge with a smile on his lips, an ace up his sleeve, and a weapon in his pocket.

Now, for the first time in one volume, Hugo-winner Ben Bova presents all the tales of Sam Gunn to date, including three never-before collected in book form. Here is the entire chronicle of Sam Gunn, trailblazer and scoundrel, as he scams his way from one end of the solar system to the other, giving bold new meaning to the term venture capitalist.

©2007 Ben Bova (P)2007 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

“Bova has ambitiously and deftly created a three-in-one narrative that satisfies any and all readerly desires to see the life of his signature rogue assembled into coherent form…. Bova has successfully added to the storehouse of a particularly American folklore. Sam Gunn is Mike Fink and Paul Bunyan (although their opposite in size), Rockefeller and Carnegie, Sam Slick and Penrod, the plucky protagonists from Horatio Alger and the irreverent ones from Mark Twain. His exploits… are new manifestations of an eternal archetype in the American psyche." (SciFi Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.1 out of 5.0
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  • 4.1 out of 5.0
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Quaint collection of short stories

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

This is an anthology of short stories revolving around the character Sam Gunn. Ben Bova's flavor of sci-fi is not hardcore, operatic, or techno-anything. The stories instead are character-driven and they play out in front of the backdrop of space.Sam is a NASA astronaut who becomes an entrepeneuer. He is a shallow character who likes action and the ladies. The stories are of his outrageous exploits in the "beginning" of interplanetary travel. The stories are framed around a "biography" documentary that is being written by a newish journalist named Jade who lives on the moon. The narration was decent, but the story seemed a bit silly. If I were still about 10 years old and hadn't read any other sci-fi other than Heinlein, I may think this was genius....

7 of 7 people found this review helpful

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SAM GUNN LIFE STORY

PERSONS ATTEMPTING TO FIND A MOTIVE IN THIS NARRATIVE WILL BE PROSECUTED;
PERSONS ATTEMPTING TO FIND A MORAL IN IT WILL BE BANISHED;
PERSONS ATTEMPTING TO FIND A PLOT IN IT WILL BE SHOT.
BY ORDER OF THE AUTHOR

Sam Gunn is the twenty-first century's greatest entrepreneur and its most hated public figure. Visionary, scoundrel, lover, liar, he is small in stature but larger than life, and his story is that of space exploration itself. He will make and lose fortunes from Earth to the Asteroid Belt, one step ahead of his creditors, one step behind his grand dreams. Through all his varied careers, Sam's goal will always be the same: to go where no one had ever gone before...and come back with a profit. Here is the MAGNIFICENT tale of his amazing life, an adventure told by the men and women who loved or hated him but could never forget him as he carved out man's destiny amongst the stars.

16 of 18 people found this review helpful

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Not What I Was Expecting, but Enjoyable

First off, let me say that I was expecting a space opera of sorts. A collection of stories about a larger than life, arrogant but charming, space hero. That's not what this is, but that's ok.

The protagonist of this collection is the female reporter collecting the stories that are presented. This approach works surprisingly well. But Sam Gunn is no space hero, and the major conflict of the story arc is very personal and relational. So son't expect an epic story here.

Rather, these are a collection of believable stories about a charming con-man who just barely manages to keep ahead of his problems. The stories are voiced by different readers who do a professional and respectable job.

Overall, Sam Gunn's personality began to wear thin with me, but as I mentioned earlier, the story is not really about Sam Gunn and there are well done surprises and a satisfactory conclusion to the collection.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

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collection of short stories

it's a collection of short stories that follow the same formula. I got tired of hearing about Sam's exploits with the latest beautiful woman

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Tom Sawyer in Space - FUN!

Any additional comments?

This was a fantastic listen. Probably one of my favorites. I listen to and read a variety of genre and authors. I love a good long space opera or a fast paced spy thriller. I rarely find something light hearted and humorous that holds my attention. Sam Gunn was fun and entertaining. I listened with a smirk on my face half the time. I thought the segment of him suing the Pope was outstanding. I kept trying to figure out how to describe the book to family and friends when it dawned on me that Sam Gunn was Tom Sawyer in space. Duh, the frequent references to Sam as Huck Finn should have clued me in much sooner. Anyway, if you want a fun, funny and ultimately uplifting read, pick this one. I will definitely listen again - and again.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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One of the best produced audio books I've ever heard

The book was quite long, but I could not stop listening.
The character buildup and view from so many different prospectives was fascinating.
I highly recommend this book.
A solid performance- A1

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Hillel
  • Bloomington, IN, United States
  • 06-19-11

Really great!

A whole slew of short stories, all strung together masterfully and narrated beautifully. Highly recommended.

9 of 11 people found this review helpful

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Fantastic in every way

Loved this story and as always Blackstone Audio knocks it out of the park. I think they could do an audio book of a telephone directory and still keep us enthralled.

I only wish there was another 30 hours to enjoy. Sam Gunn is my newest hero and I plan on revisiting this story often.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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A novel way to tell a story.

Sort of a collection of short stories woven together with an overarching plot. I particularly enjoyed the way each story was woven together by use of common themes and characters. By the end you find yourself really regretting that you didn't have a chance to know Sam personally. For a science fiction story, the technology, places, and events are eminently believable -- I had to remind myself that this was not a real history. If you like Heinlein's Lazarus Long, you'll enjoy this story.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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The best collection of short stories

What made the experience of listening to The Sam Gunn Omnibus the most enjoyable?

This omnibus was put together in such a way that makes it the single best collection of short stories I've ever read or listened to. Using the vehicle of a reporter who is trying to collect personal anecdotes was ingenious. With these stories happening in so many different locations and times, the method used to string the omnibus together as a cohesive whole was quite effective. Having so many different narrators really made each story come alive and gave an additional layer of believe-ability to the book.

What did you like best about this story?

Using an outside agent to follow the focal character's antics helped me appreciate the larger than life nature of Sam Gunn more than if it had been told from his point of view.

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

I've only listed to Stefan Rudnicki before and all of the narrators did quite well on this book. I had no complaints at all.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

We'll be first in this market. We'll make billions!

Any additional comments?

The Sam Gunn character reminded me a lot of Miles Vorkosigan from Lois McMaster Bujold's Vorkosigan Saga. I think that due to the way these short stories are told and strung together, I appreciate Sam a bit more. Even though the Sam Gunn omnibus is a collection of short stories instead of a massive arc of novels, it still read as an epic to me. This is one of my new favorite books.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • John
  • 07-13-13

Fantastic, funny, heartwarming, space opera

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

Fantastic, funny, heartwarming, space opera at its best would highly recommend to a friend , made me laugh and wanted more

Who was your favorite character and why?

Sam gunn his story board was like a picture growing with every chapter, he always ends up on top

Which scene did you most enjoy?

Too many to name, his relationships with women and the competition was just enjoyable

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

If I could yes I would

Any additional comments?

Write more stories

1 of 1 people found this review helpful