- Published: 2004
- Number of pages: 304 pages
- Format: EPUB
- File Size: 0.19 MB
- Authors: Isaac Asimov
The third novel in Isaac Asimov’s classic science-fiction masterpiece, the Foundation seriesTHE EPIC SAGA THAT INSPIRED THE APPLE TV+ SERIES FOUNDATIONThe Foundation lies in ruins—destroyed by a mutant mind bent on humanity’s annihilation. But it’s rumored that there’s a Second Foundation hidden somewhere at the end of the Galaxy, established as insurance to preserve the knowledge of mankind. Now a desperate race has begun between the survivors of the First Foundation and an alien entity to find this last flicker of humanity’s shining past—and future hope. Yet the key to it all might be a fourteen-year-old girl burdened with a terrible secret. Is she the Foundation’s savior—or its deadliest enemy?Unforgettable, thought-provoking, and riveting, Second Foundation is a stunning novel of adventure and ideas writ huge across the Galaxy—a powerful tale of humankind’s struggle to preserve the fragile light of wisdom against the threat of its own dark barbarism.
Reviews from Amazon users which were colected at the time this book was published on the website:
⭐To have a series hold up against the changing times is good, but to have the twists still carry their full weight is profoundly better. I cannot wait to read the next one.
⭐I first read the Foundation series in the late 60s, a teenager steeped in the society of the day. As a girl, I’ve always felt the lack of female characters in most of the science fiction available, and Asimov, a male writer, was no different. Through the 3 books of the initial series, there are two female protagonists and I have always cherished their presence. 14 year old Arcady Darrel of Second Foundation has always been my favorite, since I was 16 or 17 when I first read her. Another cultural difference between the 1940s and 2021 is the overwhelming presence of smoking! All these male characters smoked cigarettes or cigars or pipes as they had their exclusively masculine meetings and the occasional male expressed disapproval of a woman’s putting herself forward. See, this stuff didn’t bother me when I read these books originally, or for the next 30 years. Society changed enough, and my not rereading them for a number of years, conspired together to cause some internal cringing as I read certain passages.However! I still found the story just as compelling as I did the first and fifth and tenth time I read it! Some people have complained that it’s all talking, and so a vast amount of it is, but compelling, none the less! A TV series is in development or production at this time. I honestly can’t imagine how they can take these books, each one a series of events 50 or 80 or 150 or 325 years apart and create an intriguing show. I look forward with interest to see if they accomplish it.
⭐Like many reviewers, I reread the original 3 volume Foundation novels in anticipation of the new TV series. I read all three volumes more than 50 years ago and had forgotten almost everything. I agree with many reviewers that the first volume was tedious due to the clumsy aggregation of a collection of short stories. The criticism of its misogyny is also warranted. The writing quality improved from the first to the second and more to the third volume. Three women play critical roles in the second and third volumes. Perhaps Asimov took notice of the criticism of the lack of women in the first work and made a needed adjustment. Overall, there is too much tedious dialog in all 3 volumes, but it is handled much better in the third one, “Second Foundation”. So, I enjoyed revisiting this work after so many years. However I found the TV version (first season so far) to be a very disappointing and disorganized mishmash that put me to sleep and a poor representation of the Asimov work.
⭐This book in the classic Foundation Trilogy concludes the original story arc of the First and Second Foundations. Like the others, it relies on conversations, not action, to move the plot along. These are often intricate and “political,” often weaving and untangling conspiracies of various kinds.The premise of this book requires a secretive group of psychohistorians to defeat the Mule, a mutant with the ability to control other people’s emotions. The psychohistorians have mind-control abilities of their own, based on science and training, developing latent skills that the Mule gained through a genetic mutation. Throughout the book, no one knows who is controlling whom, and the wisest characters understand that they too may have their minds influenced by others. Asimov does not let the reader know the truth until the end.Unfortunately, such a premise can really only end in one way – essentially a battle of wizards from Harry Potter or the Lord of the Rings, or a battle of X-men or superheroes from innumerable blockbuster movies. The winner does not reflect character but the needs of the box office. Rereading this trilogy more than forty years after I first read it, I see now how the subsequent books could only prove unfulfilling. I’m glad I re-read the original trilogy but I will not be continuing after this one.
⭐All the twists and turns come together here and I found the actual writing much more mature than book one and improved to book two as well. There are quite a few characters to track, so it’s best not to leave the book idle on the shelf for long unless you have a keen memory of all those characters and where they fit.
⭐I liked the first story of the Second Foundation coming to the rescue of the Galaxy, but the second story pitted the Foundations as rivals, which didn’t make sense because surely Seldon wouldn’t have planned it that way. Also, it makes it hard to decide whose side you’re on as a reader, whereas in every story upto now you were rooting for the First Foundation. And I didn’t really like any of the Second Foundation characters, they all seemed arrogant and dictatorial with respect to the rest of humanity and I couldn’t sympathize with them at all.
⭐Written 70+ years ago and originally published in segments, the story does same dated. Some technology predictions are laughably off and it’s a bit like reading the literary version of the old Flash Gordon cinema serials.But Asimov was a clever man and the underlying plot about psychohistory being used to enable the resurrection of civilisation is a clever idea. It’s an entertaining and enthralling read and , in the second book in the series, Asimov breaks with tradition somewhat by having a woman be the heroine.Revisiting this series after 40+ years and found it much more accessible than some of his contemporaries.
⭐Unfortunately, from truly epic beginnings the Foundation trilogy over time loses its ability to communicate big concepts and turns instead to a kind of parody of Machiavellian pile-up conspiracy theories, in the style of a vaguely Wildean farce. There were ideas in the first book that were hugely important in shaping the contours of sci-fi, and the echoes of these can be heard in a dozen fictonal universes. In book two, it was clear that things were slipping a little as the idea of a Seldon Crisis became more and more abstract and contrary to the original conception. By book three, it’s a succession of ‘Ah-ha, what you don’t realise is,,,’ followed by ‘Ah, but what you don’t realise that I realise is…’. It all becomes a little tiresome. ‘I extracted this info from your operative!’ ‘Ah, my operative didn’t realise that he didn’t have the real information!’ ‘Ah, but I knew that he wouldn’t have the information so…’. It reminds me very much of that Limmy’s Show secret agent sketch where both participants are so confused by their own feints and counter-feints that they end up burning their own dossiers and drinking their own antidotes.Really though, it’s not a bad book – it’s just bad in comparison to the earlier highs of the first tremendous instalment.
⭐Enjoyed the series in paperback many y3ars ago. This Kindle edition let’s me reread it with ease, as I am sight impaired. Yes, it is a bit dated,but does that matter. You do need to read the two previous books first though, otherwise you will be confused and lack the background to the story.
⭐This is indeed “The greatest science fiction series of all time”, and the second volume written is just as enthralling as the first. No wasted words or padding, simply an incredibly imaginative story from a writer who was both brilliant and prolific.
⭐All is revealed in the last of the trilogy, but there is so much waffle about non existent theories, it’s fiction after all, that it can become quite tedious in places. Worth reading if you don’t like loose ends.
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