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Nightfall [Kindle Edition]

Isaac Asimov , Robert Silverberg
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (148 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $7.99
Kindle Price: $5.62
You Save: $2.37 (30%)
Sold by: Random House LLC

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Book Description

These two renowned writers have invented a world not unlike our own--a world on the edge of chaos, torn between the madness of religious fanaticism and the stubborn denial of scientists. Only a handful of people on the planet Lagash are prepared to face the truth--that their six suns are setting all at once for the first time in 2,000 years, signaling the end of civilization!


From the Paperback edition.


Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

This collaboration by two masters of the genre expands on Asimov's classic short story first published in 1941. Kalgash is a planet with six suns, a world where darkness is unnatural. Scientists realize that an eclipse--an event that occurs only every 2049 years--is imminent, and that a society completely unfamiliar with darkness will be plunged into madness and chaos. The novel traces events leading to this discovery, and the fates of the main characters immediately following the apocalypse. While the premise is convincing in the context of a short story, this longer version brings up too many unresolved questions. The original tale was tightly written, succinct and stunning, but the novelization seems flabby and drawn-out--the reader recognizes the significance and consequences of the impending events long before the characters do. An abrupt and simplistic ending further mars a hallowed SF tale. 100,000 first printing.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

YA-- Because of its six suns, the planet Kalgash is bathed in perpetual sunlight. However, once every 2,049 years all six suns are eclipsed, plunging the planet into total darkness and causing widespread madness that results in the civilization's complete destruction, thus allowing the cycle to begin again. Night fall , expanded from Asimov's 1941 award-winning short story, lets readers experience the cataclysmic event through the eyes and biases of a newspaperman, an astronomer, an archaeologist, a psychologist, and a religious fanatic. This novel improves upon the original through the use of better developed characters and an expanded, more textured story that results in an absorbing, richer tale.
- John Lawson, Fairfax County Public Library, Fairfax,
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Product Details

  • File Size: 2820 KB
  • Print Length: 339 pages
  • Publisher: Spectra (November 9, 2011)
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004JN1CCO
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #33,920 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
29 of 29 people found the following review helpful
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This book expands the original short story "Nightfall" written by Asimov many years ago. Just about every science fiction aficionado agrees that the original story, based on an Emerson quotation, is one of the classics of the genre. The basic premise is a superb leap of the imagination. Picture a planet which is part of a six-sun system. The respective orbits of the planet and the six suns are so defined, that one or more of the suns is always in the sky over any part of the planet. As a result, the people of the planet have only the faintest conception of what the absence of light i.e. darkness can be. With no dark night sky, they have no idea of other stars in the universe (forget radio astronomy as an inconvenient abstraction!). As far as they know, they are the masters of the universe. Now picture an unexpected total eclipse, at a time when only one sun is in the sky: a strange and frightening darkness covers the land, and the night sky now reveals millions of stars looking down on the stunned populace. How does a society deal with so drastic a blow to its fundamental picture of itself? In sheer imagination, in boldness, in vision, this story has few equals. The skillful blending of a religious doomsday cult and its interweave with a psychologist and baffled yet striving physical scientists brings out the roles of superstition and rationalism in society. I still remember the awe that gripped me when I first read this story more than a decade ago. This collaborative book builds upon the story and introduces some interesting ideas. The use of archaeology to derive the cyclical history of the plant is both imaginative and educative. The longer book format also allows the author to develop the characters more fully than in the short story. Read more ›
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Format:Mass Market Paperback
On a distant planet, a world illuminated by multiple suns basks peacefully in continuous, nurturing light. The society is human, and the technology is similar to our own circa. 1950. When the novel begins, a new funhouse ride opens that promises a trip through a straight, level tunnel in complete darkness. Elsewhere, an archeologist makes a disturbing discovery, and a physicist runs some calculations he knows to be right, but should not be. Although the setting is alien, the characters of this world are human and their many trials and tribulations purposely mirror our own. For all its fantastic elements and unique storyline, "Nightfall" is a study of the modern human condition, with insights very much meant for the Earthborn reader.
At one point, a psychologist asks a colleague if he sleeps with a "godlight" (their equivilent of a mere night light) in the bedroom. The colleague replies "of course", and when the psychologist asks him to turn it off or remove the "godlight", it is an alien and unfathomable idea. "Nightfall" is about the fragility of the human mind, its stubborness toward accepting change, and its inability to overcome monumental change in the face of a sudden epoch thrust upon mankind's collective psyche. The novel touches upon many aspects of this, with moments of scientic and religious backlash reminiscent of Galileo, and deeper delvings into the human mind and how, even in an enlightened age, the most primitive instincts can compel the strongest actions and reactions.
Although the third act of the novel is not as tightly written, "Nightfall" remains an engrossing work of science fiction by one of the great masters of the genre, Isaac Asimov, in turn ably assisted by notable contemporary Robert Silverberg. Recommended for all science fiction fans and for any curious readers with a background/interest in psychology or sociology.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars half good, half bad June 15, 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This book is worth reading--for the ideas and themes if not for the story. I've read other Asimov works (The Foundation Trilogy is one of my favorite series of all time), but this one seemed stretched thin, possibly because it was co-authored.
The first third of this book, up until Nightfall, is chilling and thrilling. The second half wanders, and though I don't want to give anything away, has a very anticlimactic ending. After finishing it, I felt the last section 'Daybreak" could have been left off almost completely and the novel would have actually benefitted.
Some of the ideas in the novel should have been further developed, while others, especially a quasi-romance subplot, made the story drag in places.
To sum things up, the first half or so is excellent, true to Asimov-form. The second half is boring, disappointing, and un-Asimov. For a 5 star start and a 1 star finish, I give 3 stars. I would be interested to know who wrote which parts of this book.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another incredible piece by Asimov... November 27, 2002
Format:Hardcover
What an incredible book. Filled to the brim with terrific short stories, Asimov completely engrosses you in the lives and situations of the characters in these stories in only 30 pages. Some have twist endings that truly surprise and thrill. Others are good looks at technology and the like in a nutshell, developed too far.
I would absolutely recommend Nightfall & Other stories- Nightfall is the classic about a world who never sees darkness- surrounded by numerous suns, and how it affects its inhabitants. A must read for any science fiction fan- Asimov doesn't disappoint!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars A very interesting book with a good plot. Mystery
A very interesting book with a good plot. Mystery, a different world, people not knowing the dark.
As usual in Asimov books. Read more
Published 10 days ago by Amazon Customer
3.0 out of 5 stars NIghtfall: A Great Concept, but That's All
This was a disappointment, being a story with a great beginning and solid foundation in astronomy but one that peters out as it stumbles along toward what one only hopes will be a... Read more
Published 16 days ago by Jon
5.0 out of 5 stars REALLY A STORY ABOUT TODAY'S DECLINE
While this is a great science fiction book, it tells us more about the present than anything else. It was written in 1941 during an era that lasted until about 1964 when Americans... Read more
Published 27 days ago by The Curmudgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Kind of Science Fiction
I think that science fiction can express some ideas better than any other kind of fiction. I first read Asimov's original version in an anthology published in the Fifties. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Craig K. Lewis
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
I have loved everything by Isaac Asimov. I was not disappointed in this book.
Published 1 month ago by Mrs. Crackers
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
very good book
Published 1 month ago by Sean Moxley
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great story, interesting concept. Was a page turner for me.
Published 1 month ago by Anthony D Johnson
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Classic science fiction.
Published 2 months ago by ashok k rambani
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Interesting write up about human kinds probable weaknesses when radical changes occur in their normal lives.
Published 2 months ago by Richard Wilkinson
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
My first science fiction story. My brother hooked me at ten.
Published 2 months ago by Stephanie G. Lewis
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