HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Pebble in the sky by Isaac Asimov
Loading...

Pebble in the sky (1950)

by Isaac Asimov

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
2,707432,183 (3.65)50
  1. 10
    Foundation by Isaac Asimov (br77rino)
    br77rino: Pebble in the Sky is the first book Asimov wrote regarding the Galactic Empire, a subject he used in his later masterpiece trilogy, Foundation.
Loading...

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

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 50 mentions

English (37)  French (3)  Norwegian (1)  Slovak (1)  Italian (1)  All (43)
Showing 1-5 of 37 (next | show all)
I'm being overly mean with a 2.5 star rating, but I was so excited to get to the Foundation series, and so enamored with Asimov's Robots Series that this paled in comparison. Not a bad idea, but we saw a better fish out of water story in Currents of Space, and a better overall story in The Stars, Like Dust. Kind of a weird one, but I did like Schwartz having telepathic powers - a precursor to R. Giskard, perhaps? ( )
  hskey | Jun 9, 2018 |
My copy says it's the first novel of Isaac Asimov. I don't know if that's true but with a 1958 copyright it is certainly one of his earliest. That said it's a fine example of Classic SF.

Asimov is not my favorite writer from the golden age of SF but he always makes the top 10. Like most of his books this one mixes speculative science with interesting characters. He has a pretty good understanding of people and he's a romantic.

I thought this would be a good average 3 stars but I was intrigued to the end so it gets 4. ( )
  ikeman100 | Feb 4, 2018 |
A struggle to finish. Yes, it was his first novel, but I only forced my way through so that I could get to Prelude to Foundation and say that I did actually read all 15 of his Robots/Empire/Foundation novels. ( )
  Razinha | May 23, 2017 |
Science fiction novel from the 50’s, in fact from 1950 and a good one. Reading some science fiction from this era can feel a bit like wading through sexist, racist even misogynist, viewpoints with cheap and nasty gung-ho nationalism thrown in for good measure, but you are relatively safe from all this with Asimov: in fact Pebble in the Sky has some important things to say about racial prejudice.

The story has an unlikely premise to start with: a sixty two year old man (Schwartz) is walking past a building where a scientist is messing around with crude uranium, there is some sort of reaction and Schwartz is transported far into the future. He is still on earth which is now part of the galactic empire, but everyone seems to hate the earthlings and they in their turn hate all outsiders. Revolution is in the air and Schwartz is used as a guinea pig for a new procedure which can increase brain power exponentially. Schwarz survives the synapsifier and Asimov spends a couple of pages explaining how it might work. A leading demagogue is stirring things up and Schwartz and his new friends find themselves locked in a battle to save the Empire.

Asimov’s characters main function is to move the plot along and they do this well enough in this novel. There are themes about who can and can’t be trusted, how a planet and its people can be ostracised to such an extent that they want to bring everything else crashing down, a love story where racial divides have to be crossed, colonialism, subject races and the need for understanding. There is very little world building and Asimov does not go out of his way to create any atmosphere, however the story is a good one and there are moments of tension and some surprise plot twists. Asimov tries to explain some of the science in simple terms and there is a couple of pages devoted to a chess match. An enjoyable science fiction novel from the 1950’s and so 3.5 stars. ( )
1 vote baswood | Feb 14, 2017 |
Joseph Schwartz, a retired tailor, is mysteriously catapulted to a mysterious world between one step and the next. The mysterious world turns out to be the Earth 50,000 years into the future. He gets caught up in the politics of Earth versus the Galactic Empire and plot and counterplot to cause or stave off a war which will result in the deaths of quadrillions.

It's a cracking good yarn with deliberate echoes of the relations between the Roman Empire and the Jews in Judaea. But the parallels, while close enough for recognition, are not close enough to make the course of the story predictable or to be certain whether there is any deeper message for the early 1950s, when Asimov wrote it. ( )
  Robertgreaves | Feb 7, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 37 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review

» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Asimov, Isaacprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Fass, RobertNarratorsecondary 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
Information from the Italian Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
First words
Two minutes before he disappeared forever from the face of the Earth he knew, Joseph Schwartz strolled along the pleasant streets of suburban Chicago quoting Browning to himself.
Quotations
Not exactly... It had been *something* like a touch, but not anywhere on his body. It was in his mind...
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (3)

Book description
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0765319128, Hardcover)

One moment Joseph Schwartz is a happily retired tailor in Chicago, 1949. The next he's a helpless stranger on Earth during the heyday of the first Galactic Empire.
 
Earth, as he soon learns, is a backwater, just a pebble in the sky, despised by all the other 200 million planets of the Empire because its people dare to claim it's the original home of man. And Earth is poor, with great areas of radioactivity ruining much of its soil--so poor that everyone is sentenced to death at the age of sixty.
 
Joseph Schwartz is sixty-two.
 
This is young Isaac Asimov's first novel, full of wonders and ideas, the book that launched the novels of the Galactic Empire, culminating in the Foundation series. This is Golden Age SF at its finest.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:23:33 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

One moment Joseph Schwartz is a happily retired tailor in 1949 Chicago. The next he?s a helpless stranger on Earth during the heyday of the first Galactic Empire. Earth, he soon learns, is a backwater, just a pebble in the sky, despised by all the other 200 million planets of the Empire because its people dare to claim it?s the original home of man. And Earth is poor, with great areas of radioactivity ruining much of its soil?so poor that everyone is sentenced to death at the age of sixty. Joseph Schwartz is sixty-two. This is young Isaac Asimov?s first novel, full of wonders and ideas, the book that launched the novels of the Galactic Empire, culminating in the Foundation books and novels. It is also one of that select group of SF adventures that since the early 1950s has hooked generations of teenagers on reading science fiction. This is Golden Age SF at its finest.… (more)

» see all 2 descriptions

Quick Links

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (3.65)
0.5
1 7
1.5 3
2 29
2.5 8
3 127
3.5 41
4 168
4.5 9
5 77

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 127,314,171 books! | Top bar: Always visible