It opens in the world of Big Science that Asimov knew well, full of in-fighting and the race to publish first. The Inter-Universe Electron Pump sucks unlimited energy from nothing, making all power stations obsolete and bringing a new golden age. No one--especially not the scientist who got the credit--wants to listen to the doomsayer Lamont who calculates that the pump's side effects may detonate the Sun. Worse, there's no kudos for him: "And no one on Earth will live to know I was right".
Part two moves to the dying parallel universe whose hyper-intelligent aliens actually invented the pump and don't care what happens to our Sun. Asimov cleverly focuses on three immature aliens whose intelligence is less daunting and who slowly learn--with very different personal reactions--about their race's weird analogue of sex, about the pump's moral implications, and eventually about the unexpected meaning of maturity. These are the most original, engaging aliens Asimov ever created.
Part three is set in a carefully worked-out Moon colony and grapples with the "para-physics" of inter-universe loopholes. Can a politically acceptable replacement for the pump be developed? Solid, workmanlike SF with far more talk than action: one of Asimov's rare standalone novels. --David Langford --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Isaac Asimov is America's most published author, at 440 books. I find myself wondering if it is possible to maintain a high standard over such a long distance? Read morePublished 14 days ago by D. F. PENNANT
I congratulate Asimov on writing this novel. Someone said that Asimov wrote this for a personal dare. I can understand that. Read morePublished 29 days ago by Martin
I haven't read any Asimov since teens, and that was a long time ago. Enjoyed it more than I thought I would,
all the themes of our new world are there - worry about the global... Read more
I appreciate that this is meant to be some sort of classic or something, but I absolutely hated it to the point where I couldn't even finish it. Utterly dreadful!Published 5 months ago by Mark Sessions
The book is interesting, until... The description of the events on the parallel universe. Suddenly all is so strange, disconnected and far-fetched, that I lost interest in the... Read morePublished 6 months ago by Jose Manuel Tinoco
A gripping and enjoyable read... A fantastic outlook on Human Nature and psychology in a world where the moon is colonised other universes exist...Published 6 months ago by H. Samuel