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2001: a Space Odyssey: 25th Anniversary Edition Paperback – August 1, 1993
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A network of beacons allows ships to travel across the Milky Way at beyond the speed of light. The beacons are built to be robust. They never fail. At least, they aren't supposed to. Learn more
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Clarke wrote this novel while Stanley Kubrick created the film, the two collaborating on both projects. The novel is much more detailed and intimate, and definitely easier to comprehend. Even though history has disproved its "predictions," it's still loaded with exciting and awe-inspiring science fiction. --Brooks Peck
From Library Journal
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Top Customer Reviews
I read this book for the first time, shortly after I saw the movie. This was when it first came out. While Stanley Kubrick's film is a masterpiece on it's own, the book does a great deal to fill in the inevitable blanks in the movie. The movie is unlike anything you have ever seen, very short on dialog, extremely visual. Hence my recommendation that you read the book, then see the movie. It will make more sense. By the way, the movie was among the first real attempts at visual realism with the subject of sci-fi (sorry fellow Star Wars fans, these guys did it first). So well did it succeed, so powerful and detailed were the production values, that it set the standard for sci-fi movies that came after. But, that's a different review.
The book seeks to offer an answer to a few of the most intriguing and fundamental questions of all time; "Who are we, how did we get to be what we are, what will become of us?". It begins with the establishment of a connection between our ape-ancestors and an elemental survival dilemma. How do we survive? The means must exist, yet, we are hopelessly weaker and outnumbered by our ecological competitors. An outside force supplies the seed of an idea and in so doing, launches us toward a chain of events in the unforeseeable future. It is up to us to accept the idea, process it, integrate it into our thinking, and apply it to our problem.Read more ›
Reading the book cleared up my confusion and answered my questions (and created a few more). The premise of the book is excellent. Instead of having a typical face-to-face run-in with aliens, the characters in the book come upon evidence of alien intelligence: a black monolith which pre-dates modern history. As they try to discover who left the monolith, questions are answered and many more questions arise. The storyline was unique, and although the characters were underdeveloped they were believable. The imagery in the book was wonderful: I could picture Jupiter, Saturn, and the moons of the planets as Clarke described them. I found it amazing how accurate his descriptions were considering what we know now about these heavenly bodies compared to what they knew at the time the book was written.
I would recommend this book to science fiction fans who aren't interested in violence. This doesn't have any of the wars or combat that many SF books have. I would also recommend it to technical-oriented people who have an interest in learning more about astronomy.
Published in 1968 (a year before landing on the moon), Clarke dedicates this book to Stanley Kubrick. Likewise, Kubrick made a similar gesture with his film. This new edition includes some thoughts on the year 2001, as well as a small write-up on his relationship with Stanley. Highly reccomended.
At the core of the novel is humanity's connection with an alien intelligence. The novel begins with primordial man encountering an alien intelligence--an encounter that would forever change human history. Several thousand years later, evidence of this alien intelligence (a black monolith) is discovered on the moon. The monolith, and its mysterious radio signal directed towards Saturn, compels mankind to initiate an interplanetary journey to the distant planet to uncover the monolith's origins and meanings. Unbeknownst to the human crew, only the ship's onboard computer (the HAL 9000) has full knowledge of the journey's actual mission. The final parts of the novel pit the human crew against the "self-aware" HAL 9000 computer. In a stunning conclusion, the true meaning of the monolith and man's connection to it are both exposed.
This is a fascinating book that reads surprisingly quickly. Clarke is masterful in his details and paints vivid pictures for the reader throughout the novel. Beyond the interesting and provocative story-line, 2001 constantly asks the reader to think deeply and philosophically about humanity's place in the universe. Clarke beautifully captures the scientific and intellectual spirit that has driven humanity throughout the ages (from primordial man to intergalactic man).
Most people are more familiar with the Stanley Kubrick movie "2001" than with this novel (the novel and screenplay were written at the same time).Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Boring book. You are better off watching the film as I have seen it at least 4 times and still consider it a masterpiece. Read morePublished 4 days ago by Mr. Math Expert
I loved the movie when I was a kid. Really loved the book. Books always go deeper. Maybe I wouldn't have liked it as much had it not been for the memories associated with the... Read morePublished 4 days ago by Amazon Customer
A classic scifi novel that reads well even after all these years. The ending was not my favorite, but 2001 is an incredibly important piece of western scifi.Published 8 days ago by K.B
Hard to find a more perfect, yet unsettling concept for a book anywhere. The first contact with life was beautifully described compared to the normal - alien life - shoot and... Read morePublished 15 days ago by Jeffery B. Feeney
Written after the movie was released, the book covers the movie and a bit more. I like the book.Published 18 days ago by Thomas A. Clark
AWSOME.....After seeing the original movie, with audio I now understand the ending.Published 23 days ago by ed hamelrath
Clarke's 'Foreward' clarifies that he was still writing the book even as Kubrick was wrapping up the film. This adds a new dimension to the reading experience. Read morePublished 25 days ago by Mark E. Hendricks
Read the book, then see the movie. If you've seen the movie, go read the book! Opps! I was in a hurry. See my review of 2001:Filming The Future. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Hal T. Miller