13 September 2009

Foundation Series

Right before Candace went to the hospital to deliver Genevieve she was trying to find a good book to read. A good friend suggested to Candace that she read the Foundation Series by Isaac Asimov. A few day later I picked it up, as it was sitting near by, and started reading it. Each Chapter was only a few pages long. This is a very positive quality in a book for me. I usually only have 5-10 minutes at a time to read, so a short chapter lends itself to my reading habits. As the series went on the chapters became longer and longer which meant that as I moved through the series it started to take longer and longer to finish each book. I read only the original three books in the series. There are three more that were written at a later time, but I think it is time for me to move on to something else.

I found the series to be quite intriguing. Much of the plot was based on philosophical misdirection. This meant that each new chapter brought new information as well as new unknowns. This kept the plot alive in my mind and kept me thinking about what might happen next. I found this to be both good and bad. It was good because it made the story interesting. It was bad because I was focused on the plot and not of the messages and philosophy presented by the author.

Generally, when I read I am not worried about the story's plot. I enjoy pondering the information presented by the author much more. Reading this series, where both were present, created a real conflict as I read. In the end the plot was too much of a distraction and so I just quickly finished the book to feed my desire to know what was going to happen next. Thus I probably missed a lot of interesting information which was weaved into the story.

Because of the way the first book was constructed I had more time to think about what was being discussed in the book. I really enjoyed thinking about Asimov's ideas about the interaction between education, technology, religion, science, societal advancement and stagnation. It was interesting to think about where our current society stands in comparison to what he was describing.

I highly suggest the foundation series on many levels. The science fiction was great. The depth of the story was wonderful. The writing was clean and fun to read.

1 comment:

Daniel Jones said...

Because of your suggestion i read the series as well. I enjoyed it for the story. I also read the 4th book, but didn't enjoy it as much. It went a whole new way from the plot of the others i thought. Answered some questions about the Mule and such, but seemed to me that it took the responsibily away from humanity and blamed all of our choices on someone else.