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Ten Billion Days and One Hundred Billion Nights [Kindle Edition]

Ryu Mitsuse , Alexander O. Smith
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

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Book Description

The greatest Japanese Science Fiction Novel of all time

Ten billion days—that is how long it will take the philosopher Plato to determine the true systems of the world. One hundred billion nights—that is how far into the future Jesus of Nazareth, Siddhartha, and the demigod Asura will travel to witness the end of all worlds. Named the greatest Japanese science fiction novel of all time, Ten Billion Days and One Hundred Billion Nights is an epic eons in the making. Originally published in 1967, the novel was revised by the author in later years and republished in 1973.

About the author:
Born in Tokyo in 1928, Ryu Mitsuse graduated from Tokyo University of Education with a degree in the sciences, after which he took up the study of philosophy. He debuted with “Sunny Sea 1979” in 1962, and his work—which often combines Eastern philosophy and hard science fiction—includes Tasogare ni kaeru (Returns in the Twilight) and Ushinawareta toshi no kiroku (The Chronicle of a Lost City). Mitsuse made SF history when his short story “The Sunset, 2217 A.D.” was translated into English for inclusion in Best Science Fiction for 1972. With artist Keiko Takemiya, he created the manga Andromeda Stories. Ryu Mitsuse died in 1999.



Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Born in Tokyo in 1928, Ryu Mitsuse graduated from Tokyo University of Education with a degree in the sciences, after which he took up the study of philosophy. He debuted with “Sunny Sea 1979” in 1962, and his work—which often combines Eastern philosophy and hard science fiction—includes Tasogare ni kaeru (Returns in the Twilight) and Ushinawareta toshi no kiroku (The Chronicle of a Lost City). Mitsuse made SF history when his short story “The Sunset, 2217 A.D.” was translated into English for inclusion in Best Science Fiction for 1972. With artist Keiko Takemiya, he created the manga Andromeda Stories. Ryu Mitsuse died in 1999.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1130 KB
  • Print Length: 360 pages
  • Publisher: Haikasoru/VIZ Media (November 13, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0067OHMLI
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #405,073 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
(16)
3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
34 of 36 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover
I enjoyed it quite a bit. At times it can be hard to follow, but the book as a whole was excellent! If you don't know even the most common of knowledge about philosophy, Christianity, or Hindu and Buddhist cosmology then a good portion of the books setup phases will be lost on you. The author harshly assumes that you already know a good deal about the historical characters and the events that he uses to introduce them to you. For most readers that wouldn't be a problem. For those who only read SF, you can just wiki the names you don't recognize and you won't lose a thing. Like I said, its hard to follow at times. Later in the book the author is constantly introducing new technology to you that is unique to this story, without explanation. Through repetition you will gradually begin to understand and recognize most of his imaginary devices. The book in its entirety is about the destruction of the universe throughout the uncomprehending measure of existence, and Humankind's desperate and hopeless struggle within it. I highly recommend reading it. The books blend of Philosophy, varying cosmologies add an incredible amount of depth to the story. Not to mention the beautifully executed imagery from known historical locations to unfathomable planets and future civilizations that span over huge leaps in time. Also, book jacket GLOWS IN THE DARK, FOOL!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Challenging, but Worth the Effort February 19, 2012
By Nathan
Format:Kindle Edition
Wow... So this book is chocked full of more ideas and terminology and description and nuance than you can possibly expect before opening it up. My advice: take your time with it. This isn't an "easy" book to read. And don't expect to read a story that you can then relate to other people. In a way, you shouldn't expect a plot, as such.
As others have said, knowing some basic philosophy (Greek and Buddhist) definitely helps. Go read up on any characters you encounter that you don't know. Also, don't expect this story to actually line up with history. Despite its historical characters, it's still a NOVEL, so suspend your disbelief! It's worth it~

The journey is what it's all about in 10 Billion Days & 100 Billion Nights. Don't be afraid to read and reread and rereread passages. There are a lot of lights, and a lot of colors, and a lot of gadgets, but once you arrive at the destination (which, by the way, is not until the very very end), you will find it to be an inherently intimate and important story. It gets you way down deep in your core (also the commentary at the end by Mamoru Oshii is worth reading, it really makes the crux of the book hit ya hard)

So open it up, hold on, and prepare to sit and think for a long time once you're done!
Big love~
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Transcendent August 7, 2012
Format:Hardcover
Absolutely stunning. I generally avoid translations, but this is very well done. If you are interested in Philip K. Dick, this novel will thoroughly entertain you. Specifically, Dick's foray in his last years of writing into religious themes combined with serious hard SF. "10 Billion" offers a unique take on Atlantis, and also challenges the reader's grasp of real history, philosophy, and knowledge of Buddhism, (and to a lesser degree), Christianity. I'm not going to offer up any spoilers here. The plot is intricate, the prose flows, and it's a shame that this book was not translated 30 years ago! On the other hand, maybe we weren't ready. I mean... where else are you going to find Plato, Siddartha and Jesus in an eon spanning free-for-all like this? Nowhere.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A very complex Scifi novel December 17, 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
If our universe is defined by the limits of time since the Big Bang, then what lies beyond that boundary?

To try to answer that question Mitsuse has mixed hard science fiction, heavy on cosmology, and the three of humanities great philosophical traditions. And by mixing, I mean pitting against one another in a battle for supremacy and to save humanity from destruction at the hands of some not so benevolent beings. Ten Billion Days and Hundred Billion Nights also covers a tremendous amount of ground starting at the very beginning of the universe to its final death from entropy.

Without going into too much detail, the novel tells a story of an alien influence on the growth and development of humanity, and how it has manifested itself in different religions and philosophies throughout history. These are the parts of the novel in which Mitsuse is at his best. The writing for each time period resembles the religious and philosophical texts of the time, and the science fiction elements of the plot and battle scenes are worked into the story line seamlessly. But the most compelling part of the story for me though was the insights into Buddhism and that outlook compares with the Christian worldview. At times I didn't fully understand what was going on, and at times the constant descriptions of the characters every thought process got to be a bit tedious; but I'm still amazed at how Mitsuse was able to work so much into one science fiction story and still write something compelling.

Ten Billion Days and Hundred Billion Nights was an ambitious undertaking, and I believe the Mitsuse pretty much pulled it off. It assumes quite a lot of prior knowledge about both physics and metaphysics, and it moves so quickly it can sometimes be confusing, but in my opinion it was well worth the effort to read. I very much enjoyed my first foray into Japanese science fiction.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Thank you.
Published 1 month ago by Jeffrey L.
2.0 out of 5 stars Time better spent elsewhere.
As as Sci-Fi fan, I've read novels that cover a pretty broad range of takes on the genre, as well as some more religious based sorts of it. Read more
Published 12 months ago by Christopher
1.0 out of 5 stars Not science fiction at all
Doesn't worth the money I pay for it, if You are the kind of pople who likes Von Daniken and stuff this is for you, if you like me likes real science fiction don't read this, a... Read more
Published 13 months ago by julio cesar figueroa castillo
1.0 out of 5 stars a long tale of Nihlism\Defeatism disguised as Buddhism
SPOILER ALERT: this review will partly reveal the ending so you may not want to read what's below:

this long, long novel looks over human history from a detached,... Read more
Published 14 months ago by X
5.0 out of 5 stars Just go with it
This is one of those books that makes you feel like you are missing something for the first half. I didn't "get it" at first but the descriptions and unique style kept me... Read more
Published 20 months ago by Brian H
5.0 out of 5 stars Vivid Imagery
If you're looking for some mind-bending science fiction with vivid descriptions of seemingly indescribable people, places, and events, this book is worth a read. Read more
Published 20 months ago by Rob & Erin Yatteau
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic. Literally.
This novel is a breath of (older) fresh air and an antidote to the avalanche of Sci Fi dreck flooding the publishing world. Read more
Published 21 months ago by Marcus Baumgart
5.0 out of 5 stars Completely wild and out there, a true epic - Chris Teifke
I first head about this book on NPR. It's a wild tale about the history of the universe through the biggest philosophers the world has ever known. Read more
Published on August 12, 2012 by Christopher Teifke
2.0 out of 5 stars Tedious in the extreme
Have you heard of the proverbial "book that you can't put down? Well trust me, this isn't one of em. Read more
Published on January 27, 2012 by lakeqi
2.0 out of 5 stars Very Disappointing
This book got a great review on NPR - bought it for my husband as an Xmas present thinking I had hit the jackpot! Read more
Published on January 25, 2012 by cookalot
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