HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

The Long Earth by Terry Pratchett
Loading...

The Long Earth (edition 2012)

by Terry Pratchett, Stephen Baxter

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
1,8511143,739 (3.6)1 / 113
Member:jmgold
Title:The Long Earth
Authors:Terry Pratchett
Other authors:Stephen Baxter
Info:Harper (2012), Edition: 1St Edition, Hardcover, 352 pages
Collections:Read but unowned
Rating:***
Tags:None

Work details

The Long Earth by Terry Pratchett

Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

English (112)  French (1)  All languages (113)
Showing 1-5 of 112 (next | show all)
An interesting concept, that I will be looking forward to reading more about. Unfortunately the description of the Long Earth sometimes seems a little inconsistent, and now and then I found myself wishing it was a bit more "hard" sf. I'm especially surprised that "one of the UK's most acclaimed writers of science fiction" didn't realize that, while not losing the material that eventually made up the Moon would have made the Earth more massive, it would also have made it *less dense* (because the heavy elements in the Earth's core weren't lost, only the lighter ones in the crust and mantle), and thus the gravitational pull on the surface would have been *weaker*, not stronger (if the difference was big enough to be noted at all). Not to mention how the difference in radius would have affected stepping, but such things seems to be handwaved whenever they aren't needed to make a point... ( )
  galadan | May 19, 2016 |
Very fun concept, and interesting take. Reminds me a lot of Heinlein's Tunnel in the Sky. That said, its an interesting take on the concept, and plays a lot more with how people would respond to the sudden public discovery of such a cosmos. Read it in one night, and went to get the next one from the library ASAP.

NOTE: Borrowed from the Anne Arundel County Library

(2016 Review #4)
  bohannon | Apr 18, 2016 |
Really interesting ideas but no follow-through. Plus, plot holes and inconsistencies in the worldbuilding. So frustrating! ( )
  being_b | Apr 6, 2016 |
Good stuff this. Written with a fun and interesting style, this is one of the better science fiction novels I have read so far this year. Of course the ending is not complete and requires a sequel, but it's a sequel I most certainly am looking forward to reading. Both Baxter and Pratchett hit their stride with this one with an interesting plot, excellent characters and interesting dialog. I want more! ( )
  ndpmcIntosh | Mar 21, 2016 |
One day, humanity discovers they can "step" from our world into parallel worlds. Each of these other Earths is slightly different from the next--but humans exist on no other world but our own. Humans immediately start stepping into other worlds to explore and create new homes. Resources and space are no longer scarce; old hierarchies start breaking down.

Joshua Valiente is a natural Stepper, someone who can jump from one world to the next without any ill effects. And so the first AI to be declared sentient (by dint of claiming to be the reincarnation of a Tibetan motorcycle repairman) hires him to be his companion as they explore farther into the alternate Earths than any humans before. Along the way they discover other sentient beings, who discovered stepping earlier in their evolutionary tracks: the peaceful "trolls" who communicate by song and scent, and the scrawny but aggressive "elves". These creatures are migrating toward the original Earth in what can only be called a very slow stampede. Lobsang, Joshua, and their chance-met companion Sally "step" against the stampede, hoping to find out what danger is approaching. And what they find is beyond their wildest imaginations. What scares the trolls and elves, and has been creating a mental pressure that Joshua must fight against, is a singular entity that evolved to be the only sentient creature on its Earth. Rather like the Borg, it envelops and incorporates any creature it comes across; after meeting a troll, it learns to step, and has been stepping toward the original Earth ever since. This sounds both cool and scary, but what's weird is how calmly the characters take it. Lobsang incorporates himself into the creature, and then the humans consider the matter solved, I guess? Even though they have no reason to? For all they know the creature just took Lobsang's HUGE store of knowledge and will use it to get to original Earth even faster, so I don't get why they saunter back home like everything is hunky-dory. And then, in the last two chapters, a nuclear bomb gets set off in original Earth, everyone escapes by stepping, and that's the end of the book. No consequences get explored, no one reacts to it emotionally...it's a very anticlimactic ending despite involving a nuclear bomb.

This was not a good book. The dialog is stilted and made up of info-dumps, the descriptions of alternate Earths repetitive and boring. Various side characters, mostly never heard from again, are given a chapter each to tell the tale of their own exploration. Pratchett's contribution is nearly invisible--there's one section in which a WWI private thinks about his boots and another about a religion that seems Pratchett-esque, but there are few moments of humor and no other moments of whimsy. The characters never seem to really have personalities or connect to each other, and the only character who felt remotely real was Monica Jansson (a lesbian cop who is one of the few people who fully understands what alternate earths means for the original Earth). The pacing is soooo slow, and the plot is basically non-existent. It felt like the authors figured out they needed a plot about four chapters from the end, shoved a couple dangers in, and then went back to what they really wanted to talk about, which was boring characters creating boring homesteads. It's not even fun in a [b:Hatchet|50|Hatchet (Brian's Saga, #1)|Gary Paulsen|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1347443751s/50.jpg|1158125] kind of way, because there's no struggle to survive--humans settle on worlds so rich in resources that they don't even need to farm; fish practically leap into their baskets. And there's no real world-building; they don't explore how the original Earth changes, or talk further about what it means that Happy Landings has no crime or disabled people, or get in depth about anything at all. It was, in all, very disappointing. ( )
1 vote wealhtheowwylfing | Feb 29, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 112 (next | show all)
The Long Earth harkens back to the old SF of the Fifties and Sixties, which revelled in the delight of discovering new worlds. But Pratchett and Baxter have essentially democratised space exploration, taking the joy of finding new Edens out of the hands of rocket-owning millionaires and governments and giving it to the masses. This is an accessible, fun and thoughtful SF novel that offers the potential for a multitude of stories as great as the myriad of Earths.
 
The Long Earth is a short read: the pages riffle past and there's much to enjoy. The dialogue is a bit Hollywood 101, and much of it is characters explaining things to other characters, sometimes at great length ("Why are you telling me all this?" Joshua asks at one point, with apparent ingenuousness). But it's a charming, absorbing and somehow spacious piece of imagineering for all that.
added by melmore | editThe Guardian, Adam Roberts (Jun 20, 2012)
 

» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Terry Pratchettprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Baxter, Stephenmain authorall editionsconfirmed
Stevens, Michael FentonNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
For Lyn and Rhianna, as always
T.P.

For Sandra
S.B.
First words
In a forest glade:
Private Percy woke up to birdsong.
Quotations
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series
Information from the German Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
1916: the Western Front, France. Private Percy Blakeney wakes up. He is lying on fresh spring grass. He can hear birdsong, and the wind in the leaves in the trees. Where has the mud, blood and blasted landscape of No man's Land gone?

2015: Madison, Wisconsin. Cop Monica Jansson has returned to the burned-out home of one Willis Linsay, a reclusive and some said mad, others dangerous, scientist. It was arson but, as is often the way, the firemen seem to have caused more damage than the fire itself. Stepping through the wreck of a house, there's no sign of any human remains but on the mantelpiece Monica finds a curious gadget - a box, containing some wiring, a three-way switch and a...potato. It is the prototype of an invention that Linsay called a 'stepper'. An invention he put up on the web for all the world to see, and use, an invention that would to change the way mankind viewed his world Earth for ever. And that's an understatement if ever there was one...

...because the stepper allowed the person using it to step sideways into another America, another Earth, and if you kept on stepping, you kept on entering even more Earths...this is the Long Earth. It's not our Earth but one of chain of parallel worlds, lying side by side each differing from its neighbour by really very little (or actually quite a lot). It's an infinite chain, offering 'steppers' an infinite landscape of infinite possibilities. And the further away you travel, the stranger - and sometimes more dangerous - the Earths get. The sun and moon always shine, the basic laws of physics are the same. However, the chance events which have shaped our particular Earth, such as the dinosaur-killer asteroid impact, might not have happened and things may well have turned out rather differently.

But, until Willis Linsay invented his stepper, only our Earth hosted mankind...or so we thought. Because it turns out there are some people who are natural 'steppers', who don't need his invention and now the great migration has begun
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0062067753, Hardcover)

The possibilities are endless. (Just be careful what you wish for. . . .)

1916: The Western Front. Private Percy Blakeney wakes up. He is lying on fresh spring grass. He can hear birdsong and the wind in the leaves. Where have the mud, blood, and blasted landscape of no-man's-land gone? For that matter, where has Percy gone?

2015: Madison, Wisconsin. Police officer Monica Jansson is exploring the burned-out home of a reclusive—some say mad, others allege dangerous—scientist who seems to have vanished. Sifting through the wreckage, Jansson find a curious gadget: a box containing some rudimentary wiring, a three-way switch, and . . . a potato. It is the prototype of an invention that will change the way humankind views the world forever.

The first novel in an exciting new collaboration between Discworld creator Terry Pratchett and the acclaimed SF writer Stephen Baxter, The Long Earth transports readers to the ends of the earth—and far beyond. All it takes is a single step. . . .

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:09:57 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

1916: The Western Front. Private Percy Blakeney wakes up. He is lying on fresh spring grass. He can hear birdsong and the wind in the leaves. Where have the mud, blood, and blasted landscape of no-man's-land gone? For that matter, where has Percy gone? 2015: Madison, Wisconsin. Police officer Monica Jansson is exploring the burned-out home of a reclusive--some say mad, others allege dangerous--scientist who seems to have vanished. Sifting through the wreckage, Jansson find a curious gadget: a box containing some rudimentary wiring, a three-way switch, and a potato. It is the prototype of an invention that will change the way humankind views the world forever. The "stepper" enables a person using it to step sideways into another America, another wherever that person happened to be, another Earth. And if the person using it keeps on stepping, they keep on entering even more Earths. This is the Long Earth. And the further away a stepper travels, the stranger -- and sometimes more dangerous -- the Earths become.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 7 descriptions

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
3 avail.
212 wanted
5 pay7 pay

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (3.6)
0.5 1
1 12
1.5 3
2 35
2.5 12
3 122
3.5 54
4 196
4.5 29
5 60

Audible.com

An edition of this book was published by Audible.com.

See editions

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

Help/FAQs | About | Privacy/Terms | Blog | Store | Contact | LibraryThing.com | APIs | WikiThing | Common Knowledge | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | 105,899,494 books! | Top bar: Always visible