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A World Out of Time [Kindle Edition]

Larry Niven
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (99 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: $6.50

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Book Description

After 200 years in cryosleep, Jaybee Corbell awakens to find that his mind has been downloaded to another body and he's in servitude to a harsh future State. After his escape via a spaceship, he traverses such vast distances--with accompanying time dilations--that he returns to Earth 3 million years later to discover a world wholly alien to the one he'd left. A.E. van Vogt wrote, "This fantastic novel is a mix of Niven hard science and a time-travel concept to boggle the mind."

"This fantastic novel is a mix of Niven hard science and a time-travel concept to boggle the mind...even after the last line the feeling remains of the story still rushing on into the magic distance of the universe."
- A.E. van Vogt

"Niven's intoxicating concepts, ideas, scientific extrapolations, and exotic hardware buffle up from every page. Rich in imagination and astonishing in breath ... will challenge the most sophisticated readers."
- ALA Booklist

"Terrific fun!"
- Kirkus Reviews

"His tales have grit, authenticity, colorful characters and pulse-pounding narrative drive. Niven is a true master!"
- Frederik Pohl

"Larry Niven is one of the giants of modern science fiction."
- Mike Resnick

"Our premier hard SF writer."
- The Baltimore Sun

"Niven...lifts the reader far from the conventional world -- and does it with dash."
- The Los Angeles Times

"Niven...juggles huge concepts of time and space that no one else can lift."
- Charles Sheffield

"In creating a geologic world and in the interactions between humans and aliens, Niven is superb."
- Boston Sunday Globe

"One of the genre's most prolific and accessible talents."
- Library Journal

"The scope of Larry Niven's work is so vast that only a writer of supreme talent could disguise the fact as well as he can."
- Tom Clancy

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Editorial Reviews


''This fantastic novel is a mix of Niven hard science and a time-travel concept to boggle the mind . . . Even after the last line the feeling remains of the story still rushing on into the magic distance of the universe.'' --A. E. van Vogt, winner of the SFWA Grand Master Award

''Niven rams this fantastic tale at the reader with taut authority, mixing hard science with mind-boggling concepts of time and space to give us a whole new kind of trip.'' --Publishers Weekly

''Niven's intoxicating concepts, ideas, scientific extrapolations, and exotic hardware bubble up from every page. Rich in imagination and astonishing in breadth . . . Will challenge the most sophisticated readers.'' --Booklist

''Terrific fun!'' --Kirkus Reviews

''Niven's intoxicating concepts, ideas, scientific extrapolations, and exotic hardware bubble up from every page. Rich in imagination and astonishing in breadth . . . Will challenge the most sophisticated readers.'' --Booklist

''Terrific fun!'' --Kirkus Reviews

From the Inside Flap

Jaybee Corbell awoke after more than 200 years as a corpsicle -- in someone else's body, and under sentence of instant annihilation if he made a wrong move while they were training him for a one-way mission to the stars.

But Corbell picked his time and made his own move. Once he was outbound, where the Society that ruled Earth could not reach him, he headed his starship toward the galactic core, where the unimaginable energies of the Universe wrenched the fabric of time and space and promised final escape from his captors.

Then he returned to an Earth eons older than the one he'd left...a planet that had had 3,000,000 years to develop perils he had never dreamed of -- perils that became nightmares that he had to escape...somehow!

Product Details

  • File Size: 408 KB
  • Print Length: 256 pages
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #32,244 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Why is the Earth orbiting Jupiter? August 14, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Jaybee Corbell's adventure begins after he dies. Rather than return to dust, Corbell has himself frozen in the off-chance that future science might find a cure for his cancer. Corbell's gamble pays off and he is decanted two hundred years in the future, but into a radically different world where the all-powerful State treats people like objects and into the body of a condemned criminal. The State decides that Corbell's one function is to be a "ramship pilot" who will spend three hundred years seeding Earth-like planets with Earth-like "reducing atmosphere" with algae, in order to cause them to develop an Earth-like atmosphere in the next sixty to seventy thousand years.

Being a rebellious guy from the 1970s, Corbell hi-jacks his ramscoop and decides to journey to the center of the galaxy. Corbell is hijacked in turn by his State-appointed "loyalty checker" who takes him on a long, long journey from the massive black hole at the center of the galaxy and back.

Corbell returns to Earth three millions years after his departure and discovers that Earth is orbiting Jupiter, the sun is a swollen red giant, Jupiter is emitting way too much energy, a new gas giant is orbiting the sun in a wild angle, and - oh, yeah - Ganymede is completely missing.

Also, it seems like nobody is home.

What happened?

The bulk of the story involves Corbell's investigation of Earth, his encounter with a crazy old woman desiring eternal youth, his discovery of the end result of the ultimate battle between Boys and Girls, and the answers to his questions.

It's all done in Niven's inimitably efficient and captivating style. I remember reading the first part - the ramship pilot episode - in Analog back in the '70s.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My first Niven book... June 21, 2001
Format:Mass Market Paperback
AWOoT was the first Niven book I have ever read (at age 15). My family owns a convenience store/newsstand in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and in 1977 my father received a batch of SF books in consignation for the store's book section. He brought home three of them for me, 'The Space Machine' by C. Priest--a very enjoyable pastiche of H.G.Wells' 'The Time Machine' and 'War of the Worlds', another one so bad I do not remember even its title, and 'A World Out of Time'. At the beginning I was skeptic. The blurbs on the back cover sounded kind of 'New Wavish' and even freakish. Being a hardcore-SF fan weaned on A.C.Clarke and I.Asimov, I was militantly anti 'New-Wave' SF (the fashion in Argentinian SF publishing at the time) or 'unscientific'. I did not want to waste my time on another 'character' story or fantasy tale. I wanted at least planetary size action and ideas...Man, I got them in spades and of Galactic size!!! To say it blew me away it is too little to express the impact of this book on me. It was like an intellectual sledge-hammer crashing on my brain. Only J.Varley's 'The Persistence of Vision' collection had a similar effect on me--and only because I was ten years older and wiser at the time. I read and reread the books more times than I remember. It was also humongously popular with my HS friends--but I suspect more due to the then 'titillating' sex scenes than the gigantic space and time range of the plot, action and ideas. After that, Niven entered the Pantheon of 'hunt for' SF authors, so 'Ringworld' and "Tales of Known Space' (plus everything he has written alone or in collaboration) followed, increasing my awe and admiration for his work. But AWOoT is still my most beloved Niven's book.
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars

Take time out for "A World Out of Time" January 13, 1998

By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I had read darn near everything Niven's written, and finally got around to this novel.
I wish I'd read it sooner!
Lots of action, a sense of discovery around every corner, and with every turn of the page a new puzzle to solve within the plot of the story. Of course it also has the big big science that Niven is famous for. What a treat after his less than spectacular recent efforts. If I had one bad thing to say, it's that a small portion of the science no longer holds up to current theories--but that's a small price to pay for such fun!
If you're a sci-fi fan, and haven't yet read Niven, I highly recommend this book for your first read. Every bit as good as "Ringworld", with none of the overhead of that novel's "Known Space" universe to catch up on. If you're already a Niven fan, and haven't yet experienced this novel--read it now before you run out of time!
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is an excellent novel. It does everything you would expect of a novel. It entertains; it surprises and motivates thought. This book covers 3 million years of time through the viewpoint of one personality. I say personality rather then person, as it is not necessarily the same thing for the purposes of this novel. The author does an excellent job of not getting bogged down in the vast areas of change that happen in 3 million years and only shows us things that are relevant and aid the telling of the story rather then bog it down.
Basically, the story is that of humanity and its cycles of evolution. All of this is told through one mans viewpoint and gives us a 1970's perspective on the rest of future humanity. A very well told story that is told succinctly and with the correct level of pithiness. A definite recommendation on my part. The only reason that I give this book four stars instead of five is because although it has aged well over 25 years I do not believe the story survives completely independent of the science in this case and that has aged less well. A very entertaining read.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Niven has proven he's better than this....still enjoyable and priced right
Published 5 days ago by John Thomas
5.0 out of 5 stars This was a great read. A story of how unrecognizable the earth ...
This was a great read. A story of how unrecognizable the earth could become, if we could travel millions of years into the future.
Published 15 days ago by Neil Baker
5.0 out of 5 stars Traveled to the Galactic Core and Back for the First Time
One of my favorites from my teen years. I read the book shortly after it had been published in paperback for the first time - about the same time as the initial "Ringworld" buzz... Read more
Published 16 days ago by David A. Gibson
5.0 out of 5 stars A Keeper
Love this book. It's been around for awhile now, and this is the third replacement. If that doesn't mean it's a keeper I don't know what does.
Published 17 days ago by StarWizard
5.0 out of 5 stars Old Favorite
I picked up a paperback copy of this at a yard sale back in the seventies and couldn't put it down. When I found it in a kindle edition, I couldn't resist. Great fun.
Published 1 month ago by Deborah J. Diem
4.0 out of 5 stars World out of Time Still Timely
I must have read this book almost 40 years ago, and it still seemed fresh and current - except for water beds being the wave of the future! Read more
Published 2 months ago by John A. Aubel
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book..
Good read for all lovers of Sci Fi. Highly recommend it. La la la word limits are fun la la.
Published 4 months ago by TheLabrat
1.0 out of 5 stars This is a subpar offering from Larry Niven
This is a story without any real point to it. A "corpsicle" wakes up in a different body, is trained by the "state" to be a starship pilot, swipes an interstellar... Read more
Published 4 months ago by David P. Graf
4.0 out of 5 stars Great book, however the Kindle version is of poor quality
The book was excellent, so much so that it feels wrong to give it less than 5 stars, but I was disappointing with the Kindle version, so I'm docking one star for that reason. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Tyko Makitämmi
5.0 out of 5 stars my favorite
I love, love, love this little book. I think I have read it a dozen times. It is one of my all time favorite books besides The City and the Stars. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Scoe
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More About the Author

LARRY NIVEN is the multiple Hugo and Nebula Award-winning author of the Ringworld series, along with many other science fiction masterpieces. He lives in Chatsworth, California. JERRY POURNELLE is an essayist, journalist, and science fiction author. He has advanced degrees in psychology, statistics, engineering, and political science. Together Niven and Pournelle are the authors of many New York Times bestsellers including Inferno, The Mote in God's Eye, Footfall, and Lucifer's Hammer.

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