2010: Odyssey Two (Space Odyssey Series #2)

2010: Odyssey Two (Space Odyssey Series #2)

4.2 30
by Arthur C. Clarke
     
 

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"A daring romp through the solar system and a worthy successor to 2001."

*Carl Sagan

Nine years after the disastrous Discovery mission to Jupiter in 2001, a joint U.S.-Soviet expedition sets out to rendezvous with the derelict spacecraft *to search the memory banks of the mutinous computer HAL 9000 for clues to what went wrong . . . and what became of

Overview

"A daring romp through the solar system and a worthy successor to 2001."

*Carl Sagan

Nine years after the disastrous Discovery mission to Jupiter in 2001, a joint U.S.-Soviet expedition sets out to rendezvous with the derelict spacecraft *to search the memory banks of the mutinous computer HAL 9000 for clues to what went wrong . . . and what became of Commander Dave Bowman.

Without warning, a Chinese expedition targets the same objective, turning the recovery mission into a frenzied race for the precious information Discovery may hold about the enigmatic monolith that orbits Jupiter.

Meanwhile, the being that was once Dave Bowman *the only human to unlock the mystery of the monolith *streaks toward Earth on a vital mission of its own . . .

"Clarke deftly blends discovery, philosophy, and a newly acquired sense of play."

*Time

"2010 is easily Clarkes' best book in over a decade."

*The San Diego Tribune

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780345413970
Publisher:
Random House Publishing Group
Publication date:
10/05/1999
Series:
Space Odyssey Series, #2
Pages:
320
Sales rank:
1,079,796
Product dimensions:
5.45(w) x 8.21(h) x 0.85(d)
Age Range:
12 - 18 Years

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Carl Sagan
A daring romp through the solar system and a worthy successor to 2001.

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2010 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 30 reviews.
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JGolomb More than 1 year ago
"2010 - Odyssey Two" is a strong sequel to Arthur C. Clarke's renowned "2001 - A Space Odyssey". The story is well-crafted and the plot moves briskly, which makes for an enjoyable read. It's not deep on character development, and the action is infrequent, but delivered smartly and purposefully to provide the fuel for an interesting plot, expansive exposition of space, and exploration of key themes.  Like the first novel, Clarke crafts his story and writing very deliberately to create a heavy and epic atmosphere. His primary theme revolves around evolution, and builds upon the mythology he created in  "2001" by expanding on the role played by the unseen aliens in planting and encouraging life throughout the universe, including Earth and elsewhere within our own solar system. He spends just enough time on backstory to refresh readers on the salient points from the first book, but more importantly, provides a legend (within one of two foreword's/author's notes in this specific edition) to where the author followed storylines from his original novel, or from the famous movie which contained slight modifications. And yes, Clarke provides satisfying answers to many of the questions left without conclusion in the first book and movie. Clarke returns Dr. Heywood Floyd in this space-traveling saga, but this time in the lead role. He and two other Americans join a Russian crew aboard a starship headed to Jupiter to connect with the presumably abandoned and derelict 'Discovery', obtain information about the Monolith and find out what happened to lost crewman Dave Bowman.  Dr. Floyd is a strong lead and the most three-dimensional of all characters in the story. His motivation for leaving his family on the very long journey: "Four men had died, and one had disappeared, out there among the moons of Jupiter. There was blood on his hands, and he did not know how to wash them clean." The trademark of great storytelling is the ability to convey ideas and themes through demonstration rather than outright telling. As a reader, I'd rather come to understand a characters' nature and motivations through the demonstration of certain behaviors and backstory, rather than be spoon-fed and literally told of one's characteristics. Clarke does a nice job of layering on the flesh of Dr. Floyd early in the story, and continuing to build as the plot progresses. None of the other characters on board the Russian craft are more than two dimensional, which increases the focus of the novel on Floyd, Star-Child/Post-Human Dave Bowman, and perhaps the story's central character: Jupiter and its moons. Among the Americans is Dr. Chandra, the parent/inventor of HAL9000, the 'Discovery's' near-sentient ship-computer that killed its original crew, which led Bowman to decommission its' cognizance. Chandra plays a key role as he works to restart HAL with the hope that he can help guide the ship back to earth, but also to shed light on why it developed the compu-psychoses that led to its' violent behavior. Chandra is drawn as the lovingly patient and near-obsessed parent focused on nurturing his lost child. The relationship between Chandra and HAL generate some terrific scenes throughout the book as HALs personality reemerges, including the first time it awakens from it's 9-year-long sleep: "Good morning, Dr. Chandra. This is Hal. I am ready for my first lesson."  Dr. Floyd notices and comments on Dr. Chandra's work: "...to watch the steady regrowth of Hal's personality, from brain-damaged child to puzzled adolescent and at length to slightly condescending adult." "(It's like) disturbed youngsters were straightened out by all-wise descendants of the legendary Sigmund Freud! Essentially the same story was being played out in the shadow of Jupiter." The Chandra-HAL relationship creates tension within the plot as the crew can never fully trust HAL following his behavior in "2001". "2001" concluded with the Monolith's aliens shedding Bowman of his human form and 'raising' him up to a being that needs no real form, but exists as pure energy. This evolved Bowman returns in "2010" and acts as Clarke's guide to Jupiter and it's moons. He uses Bowman's exploration as a means to delve into the physical nature of those celestial bodies and postulation on what life could exist in those extreme environments. The exposition is detailed and written with a poetic flourish. Bowman is the evolutionary result of the experiments performed on the pre human man-apes by the Monolith millions of years ago, and famously portrayed in the original movie. In "2010", he becomes aware of how the alien beings introduced life and evolution throughout the universe, and monitor their progression over millions of years. These aliens are, for all intents and purposes, God.   Clarke writes that the aliens, "...in all the galaxy, they had found nothing more precious than Mind, they encouraged its dawning everywhere. They became farmers in the fields of stars; they sowed, and sometimes they reaped."  More ominously, he continues, "And sometimes, dispassionately, they had to weed."
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Guest More than 1 year ago
In the previous novel, 2001: A Space Odyssey, several events have occured that lead many people to not only enjoy the journey, but scratch their heads in puzzlement. What exactly happened to Commander Dave Bowman? What's up with Hal? The only way to know is to take the same journey as we once did before - through the deep void of Space against the well concealed mysteries of the universe. Buckle up.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If possible, it's even better than 2001. I love his ideas, they're almost genius. I can't wait to get started on the next book in the series!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Clarke capitalizes on 2001 in an extraordinary way. He pays homage to the first, but takes the reader further than I ever imagined. In my opinion, the closing pages of the epilogue is among the best science fiction ever put into print. I just wish Clarke would write a book about which of us eventually do...
Guest More than 1 year ago
great book, but i wish Clarke would've followed the book version of 2001 rather than the movie, but is still good nontheless.