I think it's impossible to really understand somebody, what they want, what they believe, and not love them the way they love themselves.
-Orson Scott Card, Ender's Game

"Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away."
-Phillip K. Dick

Sunday, April 21, 2013

2010: Odyssey Two by Arthur C Clarke

Genre: Sci-fi / Realistic Fiction / Space / Speculative Fiction

This is the second book in Arthur C. Clarke's Space Odyssey.  It takes off from the viewpoint of Dr. Floyd who goes into space with a crew to the Discovery to fix it, as well as HAL.  They come across the Zagadka, which seems to be some kind of alien or mechanical creature.  Bowman is a ghost like entity that helps them escape initial destruction of their own ship, the Leonov.

Goodreads Synopsis:
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.

Before I get into what I thought about this book, I'd like you to first read my review of 2001: A Space Odyssey.  Done with that? Alright, now you my continue.

I'm enrolled in Astronomy at my community college, which shall remain nameless.  My teacher constantly referenced this book throughout the semester, but I didn't actually land myself a copy until maybe 3 weeks ago? Something like that.  Well he shall be happy to know I have completed the read, and now he can be a little less disappointed in his class for not being "readers."  I'm definitely a reader, I just find myself with the lack of time to read due to my class focus. Anyhow on with the review!

After learning as much as I did this semester in my Astronomy class, I found myself never at a loss to understanding what was going on in this world that Arthur has written.  This world he has written is quite accurate, though of course with elements of fiction, for instance, Zagadka.  To understand this better you'll have to read the book.  Hopefully you have some idea about Astronomy that might help you comprehend how accurate he's truly written this novel. 

Though I didn't connect to any of his characters personally, I connected with the concept he laid out.  I was surprised that HAL was less predictable in this novel.  I find it amazing when writers can convince me I know something about a character or idea, then they totally change my mind by blowing me away with things that I could never have foretold.

At times I found myself lacking in intrigue.  That's not to say this novel wasn't written well, it could just have been a bad time for me to read certain parts of it.  My mind is quite scattered being a college student and all.

Sometimes I found myself laughing, though most of this novel seems to be quite serious.  Perhaps it's the context of which it's read.  Perhaps on sillier days it was funnier, or perhaps he had meant it to have humor to branch away from the seriousness at times.  Whatever the reason, humor is something I was glad this book had, in my experience of it.

All in all, I actually preferred this book to 2001: A Space Odyssey.  It was written well, and I applaud him for his ability to be accurate.  Yes of course I know he has passed away already, and for that I am saddened.  May he rest in peace.  He was a wonderful writer.

Shame on anyone who thinks evil of this.