Friday, November 14, 2008

Buy Jupiter and Other Stories

Buy Jupiter and Other Stories
Isaac Asimov, © 1979
207 pages

Today while in the library taking notes for my two term papers, I read through Buy Jupiter and Other Stories. I did not intend to finish it, but I realized I was finished with my notes ahead of time, and rather than starting my first paper an hour before lunch, I decided to return to and finish Buy Jupiter. It is a collection of some 20+ short stories by Isaac Asimov, each with generous afterwords and forewords. It turns out that I am not the only fan who adores these little asides by Asimov -- apparently he was written to by fans who thanked him for them.

Many of the stories are quite brief. There were about four that I didn't quite "get", but there were also some stories that really struck me and have become favorites. I'll mention a few of the stories: all are not necessarily favorites.
  1. "Buy Jupiter" concerns the reaction of Earth when aliens approach requesting to buy the planet of Jupiter. The conclusion is rather comedic.
  2. "The Founding Father" is about the crew of five Earthmen who crash on an Earth-like planet with an atmosphere of ammonia. They labor to make it livable. Excellent conclusion -- one of my favorites.
  3. "Button, Button" features an inventor who uses German sentence structure whenever he grows emotional. As a student of the German language, I found that particularly interesting.
Many of the stories feature a first-person narrative voice, which is unusual for Asimov's short stories -- at least the ones I've seen. The book is an exceptionally quick read.

2 comments:

  1. Wow. I might even like that one. Sounds a little Vonnegut-ish! ;)

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  2. :) Well, if you find a copy of it, please tell me how you enjoyed it.

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