Foundation's Triumph (Second Foundation Trilogy)

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9780061052415: Foundation's Triumph (Second Foundation Trilogy)

As for me, I am finished.' With these words, a frail, dying Hari Seldon completes his life's work. The old man has just recorded messages for the Time Vault of the First Foundation. Psychohistory's Seldon Plan is unleashed, propelled by the ponderous momentum of destiny. Younger hands will now take up the task.

For the first time in his life, Seldon is no longer watched, nurtured and guided by robots and he retires to a corner of the Imperial Park to garden. The Seldon plan has three possible outcomes. None of them fills him with joy but he is consoled by the thought that any of the three is better than the chaos that would have happened without him.

But the future still holds some surprises for Hari Seldon...

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Review:

Isaac Asimov's 1951-53 "Foundation" trilogy is a rough-hewn classic of far-future SF, honoured with a unique 1965 Hugo for Best All-Time Series. It begins with "psychohistorian" Hari Seldon mapping the best possible course for humanity's next millennium, after the fall of the doomed Galactic Empire. Late in life Asimov revisited the series and awkwardly linked it with his popular robot stories--introducing vast conspiracy theories to explain the Empire's total lack of visible robots.

Asimov's estate authorised three SF notables to fill out Seldon's life in the "Second Foundation Trilogy", which David Brin here wraps up after Gregory Benford's Foundation's Fear and Greg Bear's Foundation and Chaos. Chaos is the new keyword because chaos theory seemingly makes nonsense of psychohistorical prediction. Whole planetary populations can lapse into chaotic rebellion despite secret mind-controlling agencies behind the scenes. So Seldon makes his last interstellar journey, harried, lectured and even kidnapped by the warring factions of robots and not-quite-robots that have long manipulated humanity. The robots' dilemma:

"We are loyal, and yet far more competent than our masters. For their own sake, we have kept them ignorant, because we know too well what destructive paths they follow, whenever they grow too aware."

Brin does his best with Asimov's overcrowded legacy, skilfully steering Seldon to an insight about the much-foretold future that satisfies both the old man and the reader, with a spark of human free will and constructive chaos shining through the greyness of predestination. Asimov would have approved. --David Langford

Review:

Brin, Bear and Benford have written three terrific books which add a new level of richness to SF's greatest achievement ( *****SFX)

It took a long time for the future to get history. Robert Heinlein did a chart. Then, in 1942, Isaac Asimov began the Foundation series ... Now it's time to take another step ( JOHN CLUTE)

Isaac Asimov's 1951-53 "Foundation" trilogy is a rough-hewn classic of far-future SF, honoured with a unique 1965 Hugo for Best All-Time Series. It begins with "psychohistorian" Hari Seldon mapping the best possible course for humanity's next millennium, after the fall of the doomed Galactic Empire. Late in life Asimov revisited the series and awkwardly linked it with his popular robot stories--introducing vast conspiracy theories to explain the Empire's total lack of visible robots. ( Asimov's estate authorised three SF notables to fill out Seldon's life in the "Second Foundation Trilogy", which David Brin here wraps up after Gregory Benford's Foundation's Fear and Greg Bear's Foundation and Chaos. Chaos is the new keyword because chao)

We are loyal, and yet far more competent than our masters. For their own sake, we have kept them ignorant, because we know too well what destructive paths they follow, whenever they grow too aware. ( Brin does his best with Asimov's overcrowded legacy, skilfully steering Seldon to an insight about the much-foretold future that satisfies both the old man and the reader, with a spark of human free will and constructive chaos shining through the greyness)

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