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Posted February 25, 2009
(Originally written September 19, 2005)
"Odyssey" is Book #1 in the "Isaac Asimov's Robot City" series. Written in the 1980's, this was apparently the first novel to take place in Asimov's robot universe that was not written by Asimov himself.
I read Asimov's robot novels many years ago, and remember enjoying them very much. When "Odyssey" first began, I found myself thinking, "Uh oh." The premise was interesting enough, if a bit standard (the amnesiac plot has been done to death). But the pacing was very stilted, and there was an overuse of having the main character, Derec, fall unconscious as a device to move the plot forward in both time and space. It would be fair to say that the story bordered on "boring."
BUT, after the first few chapters, I found myself becoming more involved in Derec's plight. On top of having to solve who HE is, he also has external mysteries which demand his attention. I became swept along with him, and started really caring about the story's resolution (for those of you who might feel the same, I should warn you that the book has a cliff hanger ending, so be prepared to follow at least Book #2!).
One complaint, after I finally got interested, was how easily Derec allowed some people to hold back information about his past when they clearly had it. If I were in HIS shoes, I would have grabbed Kate and SHAKEN it out of her!
Overall, a decent read, so long as you stick with it. For myself, I will PROBABLY end up buying Book #2, and HOPE that Derec's secret history is revealed therein.