Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Hugo Winner Book Review: The Gods Themselves by Isaac Asimov

This novel won the Hugo award for 1973.

I had read it before, but it is one of Asimov's best novels and as it had been some years since reading it, I decided to read it again.

I remember reading in Asimov's autobiography that the genesis of this novel was a criticism that his stories didn't feature non-human aliens or sex, so he was determined to write a novel with very alien aliens and (alien) sex.

The novel is in three distinct parts: the first takes place on Earth, the second in a different (parallel) universe, and the third takes place on a future colonized moon.

It is a standalone novel that doesn't fit into his robot or Foundation series, and in my opinion was Asimov in his prime. There were some similarities in his depiction of lunar colonies with books by Robert A. Heinlein, but I think this just reflected the general thinking of most science fiction authors of that era about where future colonization of the moon could go.

He also put in some political intrigue among scientists, vying for fame and backstabbing each other, that is likely based on some of his experiences as a scientist and academic.

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