- Published: 2020
- Number of pages: 243 pages
- Format: EPUB
- File Size: 0.24 MB
- Authors: Isaac Asimov
The first book in the Galactic Empire series, the spectacular precursor to the classic Foundation series, by one of history’s most influential writers of science fiction, Isaac AsimovHis name was Biron Farrill and he was a student at the University of Earth. A native of one of the helpless Nebular Kingdoms, he saw his home world conquered and controlled by the planet Tyrann—a ruthless, barbaric Empire that was building a dynasty of cruelty and domination among the stars.Farrill’s own father had been executed for trying to resist the Tyrann dictatorship and now someone was trying to kill Biron. But why? His only hope for survival lay in fleeing Earth and joining the rebellion that was rumored to be forming somewhere in the Kingdoms. But once he cast his lot with the freedom fighters, he would find himself guarding against treachery on every side and facing the most difficult choice of all: to betray either the woman he loved or the revolution that was the last hope for the future.
Reviews from Amazon users which were colected at the time this book was published on the website:
⭐This is Asimov’s first take at a galactic trilogy, before the Foundation series. The Stars, Like Dust is the first volume of a classic space opera, the Empire series.If you liked Foundation, you probably will like the Empire series as well. Like Foundation, it is all political maneuvering and intrigue, with a little more hand-to-hand fighting. It actually reminds me a bit of the Flash Gordon serials. Those pre-date this book by about 15 years. But the main character here, Biron Farrill, is an archetypical hero, maybe toned down a bit from the Flash Gordon/Buck Rogers models, with more political sense and skill taking the place of some, but not all, of the action hero stuff.That said, this first novel lacks anything like the brilliant idea of the Foundation’s Seldon Plan or “psychohistory” in general as a backbone. This is all about rebellion against tyranny. The ruling tyrants are even called “the Tyranni.” Okay that’s a little too obvious, right? That’s okay, this is from a different and unsubtle time for science fiction.The plot involves a possibly mythical “rebellion world” that is growing and waiting for the right time to launch an overthrow of the Tyranni. Biron and others from colony worlds (the Earth is now a desolate wasteland after an atomic/nuclear holocaust), are searching for the rebellion world.There is tension within the would-be rebels and frictions between the Tyranni and their subjects. At the center, unfortunately as a bit more of a prize and the object of a tug-of-war is the one female character, Artemisia.Artemisia is a princess, the daughter of the ruler of Rhodia, who is under the thumb of the Tyranni. He has agreed to a marriage between Artemisia and a Tyranni official, a marriage of politics on one side and lust on the other. You can figure that out.But (of course), Artemisia falls in love with Biron, a prince of sorts in his own right. His father is the recently murdered Rancher of Widemos, another of the subject worlds. Widemos has not come to terms with its plight, and Biron carries that spirit into the fray.Artemisia’s character won’t make you happy if you are looking for a strong female lead. Asimov isn’t known for that, after all.Biron is in love with her, and they have that kind of quarreling relationship that won’t admit it is love until the pressure pops. But don’t get the idea that that feistiness on her part is Biron’s favorite thing about her. He says, “The trouble was that no one had ever controlled her properly, that was all.”You’re going to have to look past that if you want to enjoy the book. It’s of its time, which doesn’t make it okay, but you get that kind of thing when you reach back to the “golden age” of science fiction.I won’t say how it turns out. There is a conclusion to this book and to the search for the “rebellion world,” although it’s also the setup for the rest of the series.Published in 1951, there is an innocent appeal to democracy and rebellion against tyranny that you may find either trite or refreshing (given what has become of democracy in the United States and elsewhere in recent years). For my part, I found it refreshing, an appeal to what should be obvious democratic ideals and spirit.
⭐This is a classic Asimov. Enough twists and turns to keep your mind wondering who really really knows what. But you also find yourself entertained and wanting more.
⭐Easy and engaging read.I loved the intrigue and its reveal.This was my first book from Asimov..I can’t wait to read the next one.
⭐Did not finish this one.Started off fairly interesting, with an emerency, but it felt a bit disjointed and confusing. Earth is mostly unihabitable, yet people are going to school there? For what? Why bother?Even the space travel was made to feel dull, and the Main Character quickly grew to be the same.I just couldn’t care about anything that was going on.
⭐If you’ve never read Asimov, this is as good as any starting point. He is one of the masters for a reason: Science Fiction usually has a plethora of technology that distracts from the story but this writer is great for what he does best – storytelling. This book is at the beginning of the more celebrated books of the “Foundation” series, but do yourself a favor and start from the beginning of the Galactic works – you’ll be rewarded!
⭐Biron Farrill wakes early one morning at his university dorm room on Earth to find a radiation bomb planted in his closet and that his father, the influential Rancher of Rhodia has been executed by political enemies. Biron is forced to seek out his father’s true killer while fleeing from the Tyranni – rulers of the Nebular Empire planets. Seeking sanctuary with nobles on another planet, Biron encounters Aretmisia and Gillbert, daughter and uncle of the ruling house who both share his desire to break free of Tyranni rule. Together they seek the “rebellion planet” and a revolutionary document, both of which might not actually exist.Almost a novella by today’s standards, The Stars, Like Dust still has an amazing capability to stand the test of time (despite the fact that some of the popular opinions on science in the early 50’s proved false). In fact these early Asimov novels really paved the way for future authors and others involved in Science Fiction entertainment. Common themes include things like dictatorial monarchies as the normal form of planetary government (which we’d often see later in the Star Wars universe and in the Klingon and Romulan empires of the Star Trek universe) and elements of star spanning space operas. Biron and Aretemisia could be the forerunners of Han Solo and Princess Leia in their dramatic love/hate relationship.Like many of Asimov’s Robot novels (Caves of Steel, Robots of Dawn), The Stars Like Dust blurs the lines between mystery/thriller and Science Fiction – a futuristic mystery/thriller, if you will. Occasionally character interaction and dialog dips towards the cheesy but changes to common usage of language when this novel was written (over 60 years ago) may have something to do with that. The Stars, Like Dust paves the way for where so much good (and sometimes bad) science fiction would go over the next six decades.
⭐After reading the 6 Foundation series books, I finally realized I needed more Asimov. Although this is dated like other of his works from the same era, it is still well worth reading. I am a fan!
⭐The characters lack depth , cliches have a free run but one cannot say that the plot is predictable. It’s not Azimov at his best but it’s still fun.
⭐For me, this is one of Asimov’s best long stories. I first read it over 40 years ago and have returned to it a few times since along with The End of Eternity which I read around the same time. Asimov was adept in his stories at creating entire societies and introducing interesting sci-fi technologies into them. The adventure-detective story nature of this novel is engaging. My original paperback with its long-detached cover still resides in a cupboard at our house, but it has been nice through Amazon to get it back into my library proper, this time in hardback.
⭐I read this book when I was in my twenties, now in my sixties, and it’s just as enjoyable as the rest of the Asimov books I’ve just bought from Amazon
⭐I was trying to go through all books of the Robots and Empire series only to be completely let down by this one disappointing book. It’s so bad that I gave up on continuing reading the series.
⭐Bought to add to my bookcase, read many years ago before I moved and gave away most of my books.
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