- Mass Market Paperback
- Publisher: Pinnacle Books (Mm); Reprint edition (Nov. 1992)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1558176586
- ISBN-13: 978-1558176584
- Product Dimensions: 1.3 x 10.8 x 17.8 cm
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 6,526,908 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Secret of the Universe Mass Market Paperback – Nov 1992
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Then I graduated, got a job, Asimov died and for various reasons I never did get around to reading his last collection from F&SF until now. How well would Asimov hold up over twenty years? Have I changed too much? Are the essays too dated?
I'm happy to report that Asimov holds up just fine. Just as I remembered, Asimov has that delightful way of giving the reader the impression that he's talking to you personally. The essays are filled with the patented Asimov wit, charm, and erudition. The subjects are not as wide ranging as some collections - there is a definite slant toward astronomy in this one - but that makes the whole thing flow that much smoother. As always, one gets the impression (and if that isn't enough, he flat out states) that Asimov is having the time of his life, doing just what he loves to do.
Curiously, I found that I remember reading the title essay. I can't remember the circumstances but someone must have lent me a copy of F&SF back in '89.
The few bad points are there as remembered as well. Asimov does hit a condescending note more than once. The large ego will rise to the surface at times. Asimov would have to plead guilty to charges of elitism.
But the good really does heavily outweigh the bad. I don't know how dated the essays are after twenty or more years (some pretty badly I would suspect). I just regret that Asimov is not around to update them and write more. This book is recommended to lovers of science everywhere.
Supposedly there are enough essays for another F&SF collection. I can't imagine why it hasn't been published.