Customer Reviews for

Earth Abides

Average Rating 4.5
( 76 )
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(47)

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(15)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

6 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

Earth Abides

This tale of diaster challenged rather that scared me ... I stayed awake at night wondering what choices I would make in the remaking of a new civilzation. Not only is there the problem of survival and emotional recovery, but also of ethics, morality, and predjudice. ...
This tale of diaster challenged rather that scared me ... I stayed awake at night wondering what choices I would make in the remaking of a new civilzation. Not only is there the problem of survival and emotional recovery, but also of ethics, morality, and predjudice. I reccomended it to my bookclub and to my teen-age grandsons. I loved "Clan of the Cavebear"but this tale is relevent.

posted by 265910 on October 29, 2008

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Most Helpful Critical Review

2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

At first, I thought this book was great and fascinating. I love

At first, I thought this book was great and fascinating. I love post-apacolyptic stories. Then the auther has the lead character take a poke at Robinson Crusoe and subsaquently Christianity all in one shot. The book continues on for a while and about half way through th...
At first, I thought this book was great and fascinating. I love post-apacolyptic stories. Then the auther has the lead character take a poke at Robinson Crusoe and subsaquently Christianity all in one shot. The book continues on for a while and about half way through the book the author's opinions towards religion really start to flow. It's as if this book represents the author/s athiestic fantasies of society being washed away and humanity being reborn without silly religions messing everything up. I'm finding it harder and harder to finish; but i'm giong to anyway. If my opinion changes at the end i'll write another review and recant this one (if i can make it to the end that is).

posted by yarnspinner on July 19, 2012

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 29, 2008

    Earth Abides

    This tale of diaster challenged rather that scared me ... I stayed awake at night wondering what choices I would make in the remaking of a new civilzation. Not only is there the problem of survival and emotional recovery, but also of ethics, morality, and predjudice. I reccomended it to my bookclub and to my teen-age grandsons. I loved "Clan of the Cavebear"but this tale is relevent.

    6 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 23, 2006

    The book endures

    Like a previous reviewer, I first read Earth Abides while high school. I am now 64 and have reread the book at least 10 times. Nothing in the genre has come close to it for the detailed and fascinating account of the course mankind takes after almost being destroyed. Each time i read it, I find something new and feel the same excitement and anticipation that I felt when i was 16.

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Excellent post apocalypse tale

    Unlike all contagious diseases before this one that traveled over time, this contagion sprung up globally at about the same time. For practical purposes the human race is extinct. Isherwood ¿Ish¿ Williams survives the pandemic, but wonders if he is the last man on earth. --- In what was once called California, Ish eventually meets up with a small rag tag band of shocked survivors. As his cohorts just try to live, they turn to Ish, more an introspective loner, as the leader. Reluctantly he takes charge not knowing what the future will bring or even if there is even going to be a future. --- This is a reprint of a highly regarded post apocalypse tale first released in 1949. The story is actually told over a period of years broken into five major parts of which the above only briefly touches on the first two sections. Ish is a terrific protagonist whose belief in survival changes over time as he observes his little colony mature. Thriller fans will enjoy this strong after the doomsday tale that in some ways shows its pre-information age initial publication, but remains a strong cautionary story. --- Harriet Klausner

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 15, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    This One Will Carry On...

    "Between the plan and the fulfillment lies always the hazard. Between the plan and the fulfillment stands always the frail barrier of a human life" - George R. Martin

    Isherwood "Ish" Williams is one of the last people on Earth! How will he survive, how can he go on?

    "Earth Abides" is a book that I have owned for quite awhile & a book that I have always planned to read next, but never did. Finally I read the book and I was not only thoroughly impressed, I was in awe of George R. Martin's ideas about how it would all end and how we could possibly go on.

    I'm amazed at the amount of the poor reviews for this book, I think most people are expecting more I Am Legend type material. This book is not that at all, there is some violence, not alot, there are no zombies, only people & animals. Many reviewers state that Ish should have done this, he shouldn't have done that, forgetting that this masterpiece was written in 1949. The book is so far ahead of it's time, it's baffling to me how George R. Martin came up with some of these things. Would it be much different it this novel was written today, well obviously yes.

    Martin's theory of how each animal will thrive before it's numbers level off really made me think. The everyday things that you never give a second thought, Martin brings them to the front and makes you think, what do we do now, how do we get past this?

    If you like to read post-apocalyptic novels, if you've read "The Road" and enjoyed it, read "Earth Abides"

    This is the road that no man finishes traveling. Men come and go, but Earth abides!

    Enjoy~

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 5, 2010

    A strangely hopeful story - a great read

    Of all the post-apocalyptic novels I have read, this is unquestionably the most realistic, thought-provoking, and engrossing. I read it several years ago, on the recommendation of a Sociology professor, who had used it as an entertaining focus for discussion in his classes, but when I bought the new edition this year as a gift for a relative, I just had to read it again. I couldn't put it down. The story is compelling, the description masterful, the main character someone you come to care about and admire, and the premise and plot not far-fetched or melodramatic. It's a story you can imagine yourself in, and its humanity places it above most in the genre. It would be a terrific book group read, and excellent as a supplementary or focus reading for high school or college classes.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 19, 2012

    At first, I thought this book was great and fascinating. I love

    At first, I thought this book was great and fascinating. I love post-apacolyptic stories. Then the auther has the lead character take a poke at Robinson Crusoe and subsaquently Christianity all in one shot. The book continues on for a while and about half way through the book the author's opinions towards religion really start to flow. It's as if this book represents the author/s athiestic fantasies of society being washed away and humanity being reborn without silly religions messing everything up. I'm finding it harder and harder to finish; but i'm giong to anyway. If my opinion changes at the end i'll write another review and recant this one (if i can make it to the end that is).

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 18, 2011

    Best post-apocalyptic book I've read...

    ... and I've read a lot of them! The characters are well drawn and you can see how later authors have been influenced by this work. This world ends not in a fiery inferno or spasm of violence; it simply ends. The interesting part is what happens afterward, the next year, the next decade, the next half-century. Highly recommended!

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 21, 2011

    Highly Recommended

    This is an awesome book. Scary, but so possible. I read it in one day. I knew nothing of this author before, but he is great.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 30, 2008

    I Also Recommend:

    I first read this in 8th grade (thanks Mr. Petty) and it has captured my imagination ever since.

    Isherwood Williams survives a snake bite only to find he may be the only one to survive a worldwide disaster. After a cross-country journy (including a stop at a very dissertated Wall Street...which 9/11 gave me a whole new appreciation for the discription Mr. Stewart gives) Ish returns to his home, Northern California. Slowly others are found and children are born, thus a "tribe" is formed. The drama of life is played out through the eyes of Ish and we (the readers) get to speculate as to what we would do if we were in their shoes.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 5, 2006

    Post Plague Boredom

    This is an interesting history piece but not an engaging story. The plot is a standard, the plague wipes out everybody except for a scattered handful. A twist in this one is that post apocalypse survival is too easy and there are no evil forces to combat. There is an abundance of food and resources so, why bother doing anything. That is the theme of the tale. The hero is a young geologist who survives the plague and after traversing the country returns home where boy meets girl and a few others hook up to form a community of the unmotivated. For 1945 the portrayed morality of may have been shocking, even though there is no sex portrayed (lots of kids get borne). Polygamy is ok as is interracial partnering (they where all 100% monogamous), Advanced concepts for the time. Except for our geographer nobody seems motivated to take control of the circumstances of plan ahead. The result for me is unsympathetic characters with a non-struggle attitude. Earth Abides is a book of sociology not of science fiction, it portrays a death spiral of civilization, that to me would not fit the expected behaviors of a modern survivor group. The book may interest cultural historians far more the science fiction or adventure fans. If you like Stirling¿s characters you will hate this group. I found the reading experience interesting but definitely it is a period piece

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 25, 2011

    Interesting

    I got this to see what inspired King to write The Stand. Its
    actually an interesting tale but it /is/ a period piece, the
    cultural differences are glaring in spots.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 13, 2011

    Awesome

    Out of the hundreds of books I've read this one is one of my top 10! George Stewart wrote a classic apocalyptic novel. And to BJStarr, who the heck is George R. Martin?

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 22, 2011

    Avoid this!

    I bought this thinking that it is from a reputable publisher with no strings attached. What I got was a book I paid $7.99 for and received a DRM book that I can only view on my computer. I tried different ways of loading it to my KOBO but it didn't work. Word to the wise. Don't buy it, buy the real thing. I was ripped off. Very poor sales in my opinion.

    1 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 10, 2011

    Published date incorrect

    The book was published in 1949, which places it in completely different era from the descibed 1976 date listed. The disappointed reviewer missed the part where Em was described as African American which makes the novel somewhat more modern than would be expected. The story remains one of my favorites of all time even if it is from a 'simpler' time.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 31, 2011

    One of the worst books I've read...

    I bought this ebook after reading the "good" reviews and couldn't have been more disappointed. There was a lot of potential for a good story, but it fell rather flat quickly. The main character "Ish" thinks of himself as being the most intelligent man left on earth (after the plague) and everyone else is a simpleton. Ish is constantly thinking about how much superior he is to everyone else, but yet he does the most idiotic things. The other characters in this novel are one dimensional and the writing is horrible. I lost count of how many times the author would just switch to the middle of a situation where I had no clue how the character got to that point. There is one part of the book where Ish comes upon a black family and contemplates sticking around so he could have the black family work for him and he could "live like a king". Ish thinks to himself, "they would do all the work that I needed to have done." It seems to me that the author's racism was showing through quite transparently. There are many unbelievable scenarios (things that work for years after the plague) that just don't pass as being remotely possible. I honestly don't know why anyone would think that this is a good book?

    1 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 22, 2010

    Good...but far from great

    I enjoyed this book, but as an avid dystopian fiction reader I was disappointed by the broad views and super fast pace of this book. 45 years in 350 pages? If you're new into the genera this is a good starter book. If you're looking for an in depth post apocalyptic book I wouldn't recommend it.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 26, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Waste of Time and Money

    I ordered this book anticipating a great post apocolyptic story. So many reviewers have given this story favorable comments.
    However, I hate Ish the main character, and no other characters in the story are ever full developed. Ish himself was arrogant, sexist, racist, lazy, and definatly should have died in the "first kill". He was disgusting. The reflection on the creator of such a person is pretty scary. DON'T waste your time.

    1 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 20, 2005

    The Best

    I read this book when I was 15 or 16 yrs old. I am 45 today and this is still the best book I have ever read. Nothing will ever compare to this facsinating novel. Read it. It will stay with you forever.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 17, 2000

    Earth will Abide

    Daniel O¿Leary Grade 8 Age 13 I thought this book was written incredibly well. Though this is fiction, the author seems to almost be telling the tale from a personal experience. His writing style makes you want to come back and read the book again. The way Ish, the main character, explores the empty world, going from the woods to the city is fascinating. Ish moves from urban neighborhoods to the greatest American cities, seeing all the different ways they have changed. This book is very origional, and written in a style that does not constantly have action going on, but instead focuses on Ish¿s thoughts and experiences. Though the theme of this book is very sad, the overall story is interesting and captivating.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 4, 2000

    George R. Stewart's 'Earth Abides' Possibly The Best Sci-Fi Novel Ever Written

    This is my all time favorite science fiction novel. The story, the characters, and the impact of this novel easily surpasses anything being written by today's crop of science fiction writers. Even the greats of the Golden Age of science fiction never equalled Earth Abides. Nor does Stephen King's 'The Stand' come even close to comparing to this novel. And yet...Earth Abides was written by someone whose name almost always elicits a puzzled 'Who?' In fact, many well-read science fiction fans have never even heard of George R. Stewart. Even so, Earth Abides is the most haunting tale of the end of the world that you will ever read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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