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The Early Asimov, Book 2 Paperback – 1974


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Paperback, 1974
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Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Fawcett Crest Books; 1st edition (1974)
  • ASIN: B00B7RHKDU
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)

Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 1, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Some of these stories are dreadful. You will read them and wonder about the standards of the magazines they appeared in. After a little thought, you will wonder all the more because many of them really aren't so dreadful as all that. "Ring Around the Sun" had a hard time being published despite that fact that it was probably a lot better than most of its competition - and no worse than a lot of stuff finding its way into magazines today. We don't live in a golden age now, either. The bad stories of today are merely bad in a different way.
But the real story is the story of how Asimov came to be a science fiction writer, with samples of his work thrown in at the relevant moments. It was a departure for him. He'd published short story collections before this: but, for some reason, he thought, "Why not publish a collection of EVERY SURVIVING story from 1938 to 1949, and make an autobiography out of it?" Unfortunately it leaves out those stories which were otherwise in print at the time the book was published - a serious omission, I think. The book surely ought to have included "Nightfall", for historical reasons, at least.
But despite what I said about the fiction being dreadful, despite the fact that he left out all stories that he'd previously decided were worth reprinting, some nice pieces remain. "Author! Author!" is Asimov's funniest work and this is the only place you're likely to find it. "The Red Queen's Race" and "Mother Earth" are also very good.
This book had more of an impact on science fiction than most people realise. Its immediate effect must have been to make editors swear. I'll bet that when it was published, "Analog", "Galaxy", "Fantasy and Science Fiction" and "If" were innundated with hundreds of extra manuscripts from young writers who had fallen in love with the era Asimov described.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By "dybo" on February 5, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Picking up where the first volume left off, The Early Asimov - Book Two continues to showcase the growing confidence and talent of a young Isaac Asimov. With these 14 stories the talent continues to grow. In some of the stories we see ideas that will turn up later in his Galactic series. As with part one of this two book collection, Asimov continues to write introductions and literary histories of each story. Once again, they are intriguing. As with any short story collection, it is unreasonable to expect that you will enjoy every single story. However, most of the stories are good. Loyal Asimov fans should like this book. It is definitely a worthy addition to the legendary collection of science fiction books written by a true legend himself.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Blue Tyson on March 6, 2008
Format: Hardcover
A combined, or original, or however you like to look at it volume of the stories that could also be obtained from Panther etc. in 3 volumes.

The First Eight :

The stories here are pretty woeful, barring a couple (and one cheesy space opera that makes you laugh), but volume 2 improves, and volume 3 again, so you see how he is getting better. More interesting are his interactions with editors and story genesis anecodotes, again.

He freely admits some of these ain't good, too.

The Next Twelve :

Not much in here is worth reading in the fictional sense, it is an exercise in Asimovian completion. The fun stories Christmas on Ganymede and the ghost in court tale of Legal Rites being exceptions, and the collaboration with Pohl.

What is much more interesting is Asimov recounting the situation surrounding each story, and his relationships with editors - such as making up Foundation to appeal to Campbell with all humans in the universe, because Campbell didn't like stories where aliens beat up the monkey boys and girls.

People now will find some of these truly horrible, but the autobiographical bits will be of interest.

The Final Seven :

This is part of a three volume collection, it seems, and here is what Asimov stars his introduction with, talking about the early forties :-

"After 'Time Pwssy' there followed a two-month period during which I wrote nothing. The reasons were twofold. In the first place, Pearl Harbor put the United States in the war the day I wrote Time Pwssy,' and those debacle were too disastrous and heartbreaking to allow much in the way of fiction composing.
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By Blue Tyson on March 7, 2008
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Not much in here is worth reading in the fictional sense, it is an exercise in Asimovian completion. The fun stories Christmas on Ganymede and the ghost in court tale of Legal Rites being exceptions, and the collaboration with Pohl.

What is much more interesting is Asimov recounting the situation surrounding each story, and his relationships with editors - such as making up Foundation to appeal to Campbell with all humans in the universe, because Campbell didn't like stories where aliens beat up the monkey boys and girls.

People now will find some of these truly horrible, but the autobiographical bits will be of interest.

Early Asimov : H0m0 Sol - Isaac Asimov
Early Asimov : Half-Breeds on Venus - Isaac Asimov
Early Asimov : The Imaginary - Isaac Asimov
Early Asimov : Heredity - Isaac Asimov
Early Asimov : History - Isaac Asimov
Early Asimov : Christmas On Ganymede - Isaac Asimov
Early Asimov : The Little Man on the Subway - Isaac Asimov
Early Asimov : The Hazing - Isaac Asimov
Early Asimov : Super-Neutron - Isaac Asimov
Early Asimov : Not Final! - Isaac Asimov
Early Asimov : Legal Rites - Isaac Asimov
Early Asimov : Time Pwssy - Isaac Asimov

Earth joines the Federation.

2 out of 5

Finding the local Earthmen.

2.5 out of 5

Squid and shrink tests.

2 out of 5

Twin experiment planet problems. With bad singing.

2.5 out of 5

A spot of interplanetary war weaponry.

3 out of 5

Santa impersonation for the Jovian natives

3.5 out of 5

Gud training train.

3.5 out of 5

New Solarian student sacrifice stunt.

2.
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