A (dead) American SF writer of the Golden Age. If you don't know who he is, you probably don't want to. He invented the famous Three Laws of Robotics which feature in many of his books.
He is best known for his Robot series and the Foundation series. In at least one possible future, he may end up being best known as the inadvertent inspiration of a new word, the verb 'to Daneel'- meaning, when applied to the subject of a writer, the determined shoehorning in of a character into story arcs where said character really doesn't fit.
Asimov's Foundation saga has been added to by writers Gregory Benford, Greg Bear, and David Brin, to create the Second Foundation Trilogy. Benford's effort, at least, would be markedly better if large chunks of the text weren't cut'n'pasted in to appear again and again and again. The overall merits of such a scheme are unclear, but it is a Tribute Sequel Phenomenon. It is possible, however, that such a scheme could allow for a novel climax, in which a mysterious and machiavellian manipulator described throughout the story as 'bronze-haired' with strong cheekbones and so on could step forward and declare: "My name is not R. Daneel Olivaw." with perfect truth, something otherwise impossible to imagine. That a machiavellian manipulator extremely unlikely to be Mr Olivaw does indeed surface in "The End of Eternity" is plainly only physically and logically possible due to the exigences of the temporal paradoxes involved in the story.
"Criticizing Asimov because his characters aren't as good as Jane Austen's strikes me as being like criticizing Pride and Prejudice because it doesn't have any robots." -- Pete McCutchen
Some of the books by Isaac Asimov, in (subjective) chronological order (and taking the decision to regard anything that throws the words 'Galactic Empire' or 'Spacer' about with wild abandon to be in that 'universe'):
Asimov also authored myriad short stories, not to mention a few other novels, such as "The Gods Themselves" and the "Fantastic Voyage" novelisation and its sequel, which don't fit into this particular future history.
|Sat, 01 Nov 2003 12:04:56 GMT||Front Page||Recent Changes||Message Of The Day|