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3001: The Final Odyssey (Space Odyssey Series #4)

3001: The Final Odyssey (Space Odyssey Series #4)

4.0 2
by Arthur C. Clarke

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"A fascinating picture of our future: cities atop needlelike towers that extend into space, the colonization of Venus, the pacification of humanity, and the abolition of religion."

It is the world first introduced in 2001: A Space Odyssey. And now the odyssey enters its perilous ultimate stage. In 3001, the human race,


"A fascinating picture of our future: cities atop needlelike towers that extend into space, the colonization of Venus, the pacification of humanity, and the abolition of religion."

It is the world first introduced in 2001: A Space Odyssey. And now the odyssey enters its perilous ultimate stage. In 3001, the human race, incredibly, has survived, fearful of the trio of monoliths that dominate the solar system. Then a single hope flickers. The body of Frank Poole, believed dead for a thousand years, is recovered from the frozen reaches of the galaxy. Restored to conscious life, Poole readies himself to resume the voyage that HAL abruptly terminated a millenium ago. He knows he can't proceed without Dave Bowman. But first he must fathom the terrifying truth of what Bowman—and HAL—have become inside the monolith . . .


Editorial Reviews

One thousand years after the ill-fated Jupiter mission of Dave Bowman and Frank Pooke, the mysterious monolith that started it all stirs to life once more...and the ultimate answers may wait. The New York Times-bestselling sequel to the classic 2001: A Space Odyssey. A fascinating picture of our future.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Frank Poole was the astronaut murdered by the berserk computer HAL in 2001: A Space Odyssey. In this third sequel to that classic novel, Poole is returned to life after his frozen body is recovered floating near Neptune. Much of the novel centers on Poole's reentry into society as, in a series of vignettes, he is introduced to the wonders of the year 3001. These include an enormous space habitat completely encircling the Earth and anchored by four gigantic space elevators; velociraptors genetically engineered for use as gardeners; and the braincap, a machine that allows the mind to absorb information almost instantaneously. Halfway through the novel, Poole travels to the former planet Jupiter, now the mini-sun Lucifer. There, he learns about the development, sparked by a mysterious monolith, of a civilization on Europa, about the banning of humanity from that Jovian moon, and about the occasional ghostly visitations of astronaut Dave Bowman (introduced in 2001) to the Lucifer system. Defying the ban, Poole lands on Europa and encounters both Dave and HAL, now fused together into one semi-autonomous program within the Europa monolith. From them, he learns that the monolith's signal broadcast a millennium ago was a request for further orders. He also learns that an answer is expected momentarily and that humanity won't be pleased by the result. It is only at this point that Clarke injects any real tension into his story. Unfortunately, the threat he imagines to humanity's future is dealt with somewhat offhandedly in a mere 30 pages; then the story ends. This novel is a must read for those who have followed the saga so far, but it's too thin to interest those new, or at least unfamiliar with, the series. Major ad/promo; first serial to Playboy; Literary Guild and Doubleday Book Club alternate selection; Science Fiction Book Club main selection; audio rights to Random House Audio; foreign rights sold in the U.K., Spain, Latin America, France, Japan, Brazil, Holland, Italy, Portugal and Sweden. (Mar.)
Library Journal
Clarke, who began this now classic sf series with a short story, 2001: A Space Odyssey (made into an OscarR-winning film in 1968), brings us to the end of that long journey with this work. In 2001, a black monolith brings about the dawn of human consciousness and begins the evolutionary process that transforms ape into man. At the dawn of the 21st century, an identical monolith is uncovered on the moon that points the way to Jupiter. Dave Bowman and Frank Poole, astronauts aboard Discovery, and the computer HAL begin that long voyage. Only Bowman survives to encounter a third monolith on Jupiter's moon Europa. This encounter transformed him into something more and less than human. 3001 begins with the startling discovery of Poole, who is revived after his 1000-year sleep. Awakened into a world he never made, Poole struggles with the inhabitants of the Earth society into which he is reborn. Humans now reside not only on Earth but in awe-inspiring towers that reach beyond the atmosphere. They also have intellectual capabilities never dreamed of in Poole's time. But they live in dread of the three monoliths that dominate the solar system. Poole becomes their last hope for answers to the questions that the enigmatic monoliths pose. Clarke's prose, always grounded in science, has the uncanny ability to inspire a sense of awe. The mystery of the monoliths and their relationship to humanity is finally revealed, as is the transformed nature of Bowman and HAL. This is another fascinating journey by an unparalleled master in the sf world, and while this work is subtitled The Final Odyssey, Clarke does leave the door slightly ajarmaybe we'll be treated to 4001: The New Beginning. Highly recommended.Roxanna Herrick, Washington Univ. Lib., St. Louis
Kirkus Reviews
Fourth in Clarke's Odyssey series (2061: Odyssey Three, 1987, etc.). Here, at the beginning of the fourth millennium, the vacuum- frozen body of astronaut Frank Poole (murdered by poor mad computer HAL in the original 2001) is recovered and revived. Frank awakens to find he's a celebrity in an age of peace and plenty, with space elevators, inertia-less space drives, and miraculous teaching devices. Frank visits Jupiter (transformed into the mini-sun Lucifer in 2010: Odyssey Two) and ponders its ice-moon Europa, where a giant monolith is attempting to develop intelligence among the native lifeforms. And he meets that strange entity composed of Star Child Dave Bowman fused with a copy of now-sane HAL. Dubbed Halman by Frank, the entity warns of bad news arriving from the monolith's guiding intelligences 450 light-years distant: They've decided to destroy humankind. Europa's monolith, though, is just a supercomputer, not intelligent or self-aware, so Frank's associates decide to use Halman as a Trojan horse to infect the monolith with an irresistible computer virus—whereupon all the monoliths vanish.

Clarke, while never uninteresting, long ago abandoned drama; here, he simply reports, with the dispassionate precision of HAL before he went bananas.

From the Publisher
"3001: The Final Odyssey has an eerie and compelling plausibility."
--Business Week

"A fascinating picture of our future: cities atop needlelike towers that extend into space, the colonization of Venus, the pacification of humanity, and the abolition of religion."

"Science-fiction master Arthur C. Clarke has taken generations of readers to the far and lonely reaches of the universe."
--USA Today

From the Trade Paperback edition.

Product Details

ISIS Large Print Books
Publication date:
Space Odyssey Series , #4

What People are Saying About This

Larry Collins
Arthur C. Clarke's 3001: The Final Odyssey is witty, provocative, and scary. A triumphant reaffirmation of his position as the dean of science fiction writing.
Buzz Aldrin
From the moment I picked it up, I couldn't put it down; 3001: The Final Odyssey is a tour-de-force that finally answers the questions that sparked the imaginations of an entire generation.

Meet the Author

Arthur C. Clarke is considered the greatest science fiction writer of all time and is an international treasure in many other ways, including the fact that an article by him in 1945 led to the invention of satellite technology. Books by Mr. Clarke--both fiction and nonfiction--have more than one hundred million copies in print worldwide. He lives in Sri Lanka.

Brief Biography

Date of Birth:
December 16, 1917
Date of Death:
March 19, 2008
Place of Birth:
Minehead, Somerset, England
Place of Death:
Sri Lanka
1948, King's College, London, first-class honors in Physics and Mathematics

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3001 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
this book was cool, but you never exactly get to know the force that's behind the monoliths, so that makes it dissapointing.
Guest More than 1 year ago
As a big Arthur C. Clarke fan - he and Stanislaw Lem are my favorite sci-fi authors - I do agree with many reviews that 3001 is not on a par with his classics. Yet I found the book engaging, witty, and intelligent all the way through, especially ACC's visions of our scientific future. Space elevators all the way! It all could have been done with more drama, though. Admittedly, there are some oddities here. ACC's too-frequent commentaries on contemporary issues and events, particularly his anti-religious ragings, are distracting. The sinister motives of the monolith-builders, and the effect our computer viruses could have on a monolith, are a little odd. The monolith-builders' sudden restriction to speed-of-light travel is a puzzle. But for anyone who has followed the monumental 2001 series, how can they miss the conclusion? There is plenty of the Clarke magic(but no mysticism!) here to please his fans. And my worries about Frank Poole are finally over!