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“2001: A Space Odyssey” – Arthur C. Clarke

July 27, 2016 book review, sci-fi
A magical book about HAL9000, artifacts on the moon, and apes.

"2001: A Space Odyssey" – Arthur C. Clarke. One of my bookcases.

If you have a TBR pile that fills several shelves of a huge bookcase (with mostly double rows) and even more books scattered throughout the house, you might feel you need some sort of justification to read some older books again (and again and again).

I have read ‘2001 : A Space Odyssey’ several times already, although, the last time was probably more then ten years ago. I’ve even watched the Stanley Kubrick movie twice.
But something about Juno finally arriving at Jupiter, made me want to relive the mysteries in this wonderful Arthur C. Clarke book from 1968 again.

When you start reading ‘2001’, and you’re not familiar with the story, you might be in for a little bit of a surprise.
The book seems to be about … apes.

I somehow remember dreading these first six chapters where Clarke tells the story of our ancestors and their encounter with a mysterious black monolith.
But actually, these chapters are pure magic.
They are so incredibly well written, so evocative …

Tycho Crater (moon).

In the second part of the book we meet Dr Heywood Floyd who has been called on a special mission to the moon. Rumors about a plague abound, but no official comments have been released.
We find out something rather strange has happened at Tycho Crater : an excavated mysterious black monolith has sent a signal into the deepest reaches of space …

Next, we meet David Bowman, Frank Poole, and HAL9000 aboard the space ship ‘Discovery’. They are on a one-way mission to Saturn, by means of a slingshot around Jupiter. Only HAL, the self-aware, 3rd generation neural network computer knows the true objective of their mission …

… And now, go read the rest of the story yourself. I promise you : it will be well worth it !

Arthur C. Clarke, intro from ‘Rendezvous with Rama – the game.

A final thought about Arthur C. Clarke …

I have read, and immensely enjoyed, several of his sci-fi stories, and I have always thought of him as ‘One of the Greats’. But this is actually the first time I really understood what a talent he had for storytelling.

Arthur C. Clarke truly was a genius.