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2010: Odyssey Two Mass Market Paperback – Unabridged, January 12, 1984
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From the Inside Flap
2001: A Space Odyssey shocked, amazed, and delighted millions in the late 1960s. An instant book and movie classic, its fame has grown over the years. Yet along with the almost universal acclaim, a host of questions has grown more insistent through the years, for example: who or what transformed Dave Bowman into the Star-Child? What alien purpose lay behind the monoliths on the Moon and out in space? What could drive HAL to kill the crew? Now all those questions and many more have been answered, in this stunning sequel to the international bestseller. Cosmic in sweep, eloquent in its depiction of Man's place in the Universe, and filled with the romance of space, this novel is a monumental achievement and a must-read for Arthur C. Clarke fans old and new.
"A daring romp through the solar system and a worthy successor to 2001."
About the Author
Arthur C. Clarke has long been considered the greatest science fiction writer of all time and was an international treasure in many other ways, including the fact that an article by him in 1945 led to the invention of satellite technology. Books by Clarke—both fiction and nonfiction—have sold more than one hundred million copies worldwide. He died in 2008.
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Entire sections of 2001, rewritten verbatim, can be somewhat annoying, and some of Bowman's expeditions on Earth seem more distracting than interesting (the visit with Betty is used as a Chekov's gun with entirely unconvincing ammunition). Otherwise, however, this new book, with its very different atmosphere and dramatic changes from 2001 (largely owing to its altered Universe, closer to that of the movie than the first novel) result in a fascinating and often beautiful world.
Two things to be aware of when reading this:
1. This is really more of a sequel to the film 2001 in many ways rather than the book, as the monolith and discovery are around Jupiter and not Saturn.
2. The book was written during the cold war, and there are assumptions that it would still be going on at this point in time, and there are some political tensions as a result.
Overall, it's an interesting exploration of realistic space travel, with some truly imaginative bits as well that land it firmly in the sci-fi camp, but I find it hard to get very invested in the characters, and the plot seems rather dry at points. If you are fascinated by the idea and details of space travel, and the idea of other life and intelligence, check it out. Those who weren't fans of the first book and movie may just want to give this one a pass, however.