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One thousand years after the Jupiter mission to explore the mysterious Monolith had been destroyed, after Dave Bowman was transformed into the Star Child, Frank Poole drifted in space, frozen and forgotten, leaving the supercomputer HAL inoperable. But now Poole has returned to life, awakening in a world far different from the one he left behind--and just as the Monolith m One thousand years after the Jupiter mission to explore the mysterious Monolith had been destroyed, after Dave Bowman was transformed into the Star Child, Frank Poole drifted in space, frozen and forgotten, leaving the supercomputer HAL inoperable. But now Poole has returned to life, awakening in a world far different from the one he left behind--and just as the Monolith may be stirring once again . . .


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One thousand years after the Jupiter mission to explore the mysterious Monolith had been destroyed, after Dave Bowman was transformed into the Star Child, Frank Poole drifted in space, frozen and forgotten, leaving the supercomputer HAL inoperable. But now Poole has returned to life, awakening in a world far different from the one he left behind--and just as the Monolith m One thousand years after the Jupiter mission to explore the mysterious Monolith had been destroyed, after Dave Bowman was transformed into the Star Child, Frank Poole drifted in space, frozen and forgotten, leaving the supercomputer HAL inoperable. But now Poole has returned to life, awakening in a world far different from the one he left behind--and just as the Monolith may be stirring once again . . .

30 review for 3001: The Final Odyssey

  1. 5 out of 5

    Ahmad Sharabiani

    3001: The Final Odyssey (Space Odyssey #4), Arthur C. Clarke 3001: The Final Odyssey is a 1997 science fiction novel by British writer Arthur C. Clarke. It is the fourth and final book in Clarke's Space Odyssey series. 3001 follows the adventures of Frank Poole, the astronaut killed by the HAL 9000 computer in 2001: A Space Odyssey. One millennium later, Poole's freeze-dried body is discovered in the Kuiper belt by a comet-collecting space tug named the Goliath, and revived. Poole is taken home to 3001: The Final Odyssey (Space Odyssey #4), Arthur C. Clarke 3001: The Final Odyssey is a 1997 science fiction novel by British writer Arthur C. Clarke. It is the fourth and final book in Clarke's Space Odyssey series. 3001 follows the adventures of Frank Poole, the astronaut killed by the HAL 9000 computer in 2001: A Space Odyssey. One millennium later, Poole's freeze-dried body is discovered in the Kuiper belt by a comet-collecting space tug named the Goliath, and revived. Poole is taken home to learn about the Earth in the year 3001. Some of its notable features include the BrainCap, a brain–computer interface technology; genetically engineered dinosaur servants; and four gigantic space elevators located evenly around the Equator. Humans have also colonised the Jovian moons Ganymede and Callisto. TMA-1, the black monolith found on the Moon in 1999, has been brought to Earth in 2006 and installed in front of the United Nations Building in New York City. It is determined that following the events of 2010: Odyssey Two and 2061: Odyssey Three, the Jovian monolith had sent a report to its superior monolith 450 light years away, and is expected to receive its orders toward humanity after the nine-century round-trip. Presumably, the monolith was empowered to obliterate the nascent biosphere of Jupiter, but needed a higher authority's approval to do the same with the technological civilisation on Earth. There is considerable worry that the judgment, based on the monolith's observations of humanity up to 2061, will be negative, and the human race thus destroyed as the Jovian bioforms discovered by David Bowman were wiped out (while making Jupiter a small sun to assist intelligence on Europa). Frank conscripts Bowman and HAL, who have now become a single entity—Halman—residing in the monolith's computational matrix, to infect the monolith with a computer virus. The monolith does receive orders to exterminate humanity, and starts a duplication cascade, whereupon millions of monoliths form two screens to prevent Solar light and heat from reaching Earth and its colonies. Due to Halman having already infected the first monolith, all the monoliths disintegrate. Halman uploads itself into a petabyte-capacity holographic 3D storage medium and thus survives the disintegration of the monoliths, but is infected with the virus and is subsequently sealed by scientists in the Pico Vault. At the close of the story, Poole and other humans land on Europa to start peaceful relations with the primitive native Europans. A statement is made that the monolith's makers will not determine humanity's fate until "The Last Days". تاریخ نخستین خوانش: روز بیست و یکم ماه نوامبر سال 2012 میلادی عنوان: سه هزار و یک 3001 - آخرین اودیسه؛ نویسنده: آرتور سی. کلارک؛ مترجم: پیمان اسماعیلیان خامنه؛ تهران، نقطه، 1377؛ در 288 ص؛ شابک: 9644740394؛ چاپ دیگر: 1382؛ در 308 ص؛ شابک: 9645548063؛ موضوع: داستانهای نویسندگان بریتانیایی - سده 20 م بخش چهارم و پایانی سری اودیسه ی فضایی است. آخرین اودیسه تصویری از هزار سال آینده است. دورانی که در آن نوع بشر به صورتی ناباورانه به رغم رخدادهای مرگزا، همچنان به زندگی خویش ادامه میدهد. «آرتور سی. کلارک» در «ادیسه سه هزار و یک» گسترده ترین و پیروزمندانه ترین نمونه های علمی تخیلی زمان را، به انتهایی شکوهمندانه، و فراموش نکردنی میرسانند. «آرتور سی کلارک» در سالهایی که در حال نگارشگری بودند چندین کتاب داستان و ناداستان، و بیش از صد داستان کوتاه، و صدها مقاله نگاشتند. از مشهورترین داستانهای علمی تخیلی ایشان، میشود به: «پایان کودکی» و «دیدار با راما» و «زمین امپراتوری» و «دو هزار و یک اودیسه فضائی» اشاره نمود. «کلارک» که هم اکنون از ایشان به عنوان پیامبر دانش، یاد میشود، در رمانهای علمی تخیلی خود، چندین مورد از مجموعه های اختراع شده ی تکنولوژیک امروزین بشر را، که صورت واقعیت بخود گرفته اند، پیش بینی کرده بودند. ا. شربیانی

  2. 4 out of 5

    Bionic Jean

    3001: The Final Odyssey is ultimately a flawed book, written to end a series which has sadly become increasingly redundant. Sad? Yes, because Arthur C. Clarke was a phenomenally good scientist with a lively imagination and the ability to craft very readable novels. 3001 is the 4th and final volume in Arthur C. Clarke’s “Odyssey” series, starting with “2001”. The other 2 books are “201o - Odyssey 2” and “2061 - Odyssey 3”. I have to admit to not having read the middle 2 books, but since Arthur C. 3001: The Final Odyssey is ultimately a flawed book, written to end a series which has sadly become increasingly redundant. Sad? Yes, because Arthur C. Clarke was a phenomenally good scientist with a lively imagination and the ability to craft very readable novels. 3001 is the 4th and final volume in Arthur C. Clarke’s “Odyssey” series, starting with “2001”. The other 2 books are “201o - Odyssey 2” and “2061 - Odyssey 3”. I have to admit to not having read the middle 2 books, but since Arthur C. Clarke himself regarded this group of novels as not a linear series, or even sequential in the traditional sense, this did not seem to matter. The author tells us we should view the book as having some of the same characters and situations, with “variations on the same theme…. but not necessarily happening in the same universe.” Hmm. The starting point for this series was a short story by Arthur C. Clarke, “The Sentinel” written for the BBC in 1948 (and, interestingly, rejected by them.) Later on of course, with encouragement by Stanley Kubrick, this was hugely expanded and developed into the screenplay for “2001 A Space Odyssey”, a cult film of 1968 and still to my mind one of the most esoteric SF films ever made. Arthur C. Clarke points out that the whole project for this was still prior to the moon landings. We did not even know what the lunar landscape looked like at that point. (In the film “2001” the rocks on the moon’s surface appear a bit more jagged, but other than that it's a good approximation to say it’s all conjecture.) Surely this one point illustrates the impossibility of the task which Arthur C. Clarke ended up setting himself. Each novel became scientifically and politically redundant shortly after it was written. A classic dilemma of much SF, of course, particularly that which deals with Earth-bound concepts of the near future. The novel we are looking at now, 3001: The Final Odyssey was written in 1997 (and reviewed here in 2013). How can there be any consistency in the characters and situations when real-life events have overtaken them in so many ways? Arthur C. Clarke would never compromise on the scientific elements, and it is well documented that many of his ideas have actually come to pass. But obviously not all! Having said that, this is worth a look, if only to see what the black monolith was all about. In this book, the astronaut Frank Poole did not die, but was in suspended animation for 1000 years. (Cue scope for a nice meaty tale of Earth and humankind’s possible future.) Oh, and something very strange has happened to Jupiter. Other than that my lips are sealed.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Navi

    It's both amusing and sad when a book series falls flat on its face during its final leaps. The Odyssey series is, unfortunately, one of these. Except instead of attempting to get back up and trying to pretend its fall never happened, 3001 wallows in the failure, following the same idea as 2061; nothing happens. Well, nothing substantial, anyway. Let me be the first to say that I don't mind that Frank comes back to life. It was a (sort of) logical way to show Dave's human side (sort of) while sti It's both amusing and sad when a book series falls flat on its face during its final leaps. The Odyssey series is, unfortunately, one of these. Except instead of attempting to get back up and trying to pretend its fall never happened, 3001 wallows in the failure, following the same idea as 2061; nothing happens. Well, nothing substantial, anyway. Let me be the first to say that I don't mind that Frank comes back to life. It was a (sort of) logical way to show Dave's human side (sort of) while still having a (sort of) familiar character to 'relate' to (sort of). The problem is that the entire plot is, as stated above, filled with 'sort of's. I honestly never found Frank engaging enough to care about, as he's pretty accepting about the fact that he's one thousand years ahead of his time and has very little difficulty adapting. I'll take the excuse that 'it's the future' for why he could miraculously be retrieved from space and brought back to life. There's been more implausible things in this series. However, what little personality he had in 2001 must have never been revived, because he is easily the most boring character in the series. Not that the characters have ever been the high point of the Odyssey series, with the exception of maybe Hal and Dave. It's always been about the adventure, the journey to get to the plot. The characters were always basically two-dimensional, and that was fine because it wasn't a character driven story. 3001 attempts to change up the formula, happily turning in its space suit for a more boring 'life-in-the-future' story. It's unfortunate that Odyssey ends on such a low point, when the first two were so good and the third passable. It won't go without recommendation - it's still a rather unique take on the future and one of the grandaddies of sci-fi. The good also far outweighs the bad in the series, with space descriptions that make you believe you were standing right there next to them. So if you haven't yet, check out these books, watch the movies, something. Odyssey is something that everyone - young and old - should experience.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Henry Avila

    The 4th and last of the 2001 series. Dr.Heywood Floyd is not in this novel.Even the eternal, good doctor, can't live 1,000 years.But Frank Poole, that's a horse of a different color.Frank's body is floating, floating,being pushed out into the limitless universe.Gently moving up and down,twisting, tumbling,passing numerous distant planets,asteroids,rocks.Even an occasional comet.Unseen in the darkness ,in a calm peaceful sleep.Leaving the troubled Solar System behind.What dreams he must have had. The 4th and last of the 2001 series. Dr.Heywood Floyd is not in this novel.Even the eternal, good doctor, can't live 1,000 years.But Frank Poole, that's a horse of a different color.Frank's body is floating, floating,being pushed out into the limitless universe.Gently moving up and down,twisting, tumbling,passing numerous distant planets,asteroids,rocks.Even an occasional comet.Unseen in the darkness ,in a calm peaceful sleep.Leaving the troubled Solar System behind.What dreams he must have had.But this heaven ends,when Captain Dimitri Chandler(what a name), of the space tug Goliath.Finds and resuscitates Frank.The first thing they ask the undead Poole is, who was Batman and why did he wear a mask? I WISHED.In truth,Frank is still sleeping.Chandler beyond the orbit of Neptune,had been nudging ice found in abundance there. And sending them to crash on the surfaces of waterless Venus and Mercury.Someday forming seas and developing breathable atmospheres. For future colonist from Earth.Too bad Frank didn't reach the dwarf planet Pluto,dwarf ? With him having five kids,I mean moons.Does that sound like a dwarf? And more moons rumored to be around.The Romeo of the Cosmos little, big, Pluto... But I digress.After waking up, the astronaut discovers he's living in a space elevator.One of four on Earth and towering above it. 22,000 miles high.Looking down at Africa,seeing an ocean in the middle of the Sahara Desert! Even Poole gets a little dizzy. An embarrassing situation for the ex crewman of the Discovery.Gardens,amusement parks,tall trees and even small rivers ,with a waterfall and lakes.Did I mention real Dinosaurs also.Disneyland in the sky.Sounds like a great elevator to live in ! He will not be permitted,or be able .Because of gravity to visit his home.Besides after so many years everything he knew is gone.Except Poole's high school which still survives! The future has many strange things.Robot slaves for people to command for any trivial tasks,to do.Mind control helmets,and braincaps, planted inside everyone's shaved skulls,ugh. For instant communications.Where are the cell phones?.There is little crime here.Big Brother was a wimp compared to the 31st century but the people have freedom .All are equal, right? After a few months Frank gets a little stir crazy.He gladly accepts Captain Chandler's offer to take a trip with him.Dave Bowman has been spotted,Poole's old captain.Jupiter or what's left of it, here he comes.....

  5. 4 out of 5

    David (דוד)

    Fourth and the final book in the Space Odyssey saga. It was astonishing, as this book too, continues to pour the wonders and awesomeness of evolution, and future-tech alike. Unlike in Book three (2061), which lacked anything about the advancements in technology, this book makes up for it, totally! Frank Poole's experiences after returning back a millennia later, into Star City, a ringed structure at the Geostationary Earth Orbit connected to Earth by four Space Towers at the Equator, and his lear Fourth and the final book in the Space Odyssey saga. It was astonishing, as this book too, continues to pour the wonders and awesomeness of evolution, and future-tech alike. Unlike in Book three (2061), which lacked anything about the advancements in technology, this book makes up for it, totally! Frank Poole's experiences after returning back a millennia later, into Star City, a ringed structure at the Geostationary Earth Orbit connected to Earth by four Space Towers at the Equator, and his learning of changes that have happened within the thousand years, made it an awesome read. This itself makes up about forty percent of the book. Written very vividly, it actually puts the reader in the middle of the situations describing almost everything that is necessary. Some parts of the text were edited repeats from Book 1 and 2. However, I felt they were interesting to read again. This book finally answers the questions of mystery with regard to the monoliths. As far as the ending of the saga goes, I did not love it as much, but it wasn't bad at all. I wish there were more books in this Space Odyssey series. Will certainly miss them. :) ABOUT THE SAGA: The entire Space Odyssey saga is about Man's adventures and hardships in space, our Solar System: the odysseys that he undertakes, thus making the four books Chronicles. And it is definitely about making mankind come face-to-face with the awesomeness and the wonders of the solar system, the ultimate grandeur of nature and evolution, and extra-terrestrial life-forms & intelligence. The reader, I feel needs to take into consideration that the four books in the set do not comprise a single story, as is already put forth by the writer at the beginning of Book II, III, and in the valediction of Book IV. Being written in a span of thirty years, and without planning for any sequels, it isn't easy to maintain proper continuity and consistency within any of the books. I would prefer to be optimistic, that the presence of these books in my life is better than not having the writer to have ever written them. :D Highly recommended for Clarke's splendid and brilliant imagination! :D

  6. 5 out of 5

    Hope

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. They told me - don't bother reading 3001, it's not worth it. I knew they were right. But partially from a need to complete the series, and partially out of morbid curiosity, I read it anyway. It's awful. It's only saving grace is being just 112 pages. There are a few beautiful passages - all lifted directly from the other novels in the series. He makes some interesting social commentary, but that's overwhelmed by his diatribes against religion. Again, instead of ending it just frays away. What p They told me - don't bother reading 3001, it's not worth it. I knew they were right. But partially from a need to complete the series, and partially out of morbid curiosity, I read it anyway. It's awful. It's only saving grace is being just 112 pages. There are a few beautiful passages - all lifted directly from the other novels in the series. He makes some interesting social commentary, but that's overwhelmed by his diatribes against religion. Again, instead of ending it just frays away. What plot there is ends, but it's an unsatisfying end. I will say this much for it - he does a nice job of handling a man sent 1000 years in the future. It's not an easy task, and he did it well. I also enjoyed the references to other SF works, and possibly seeing the origin on things in more recent SF stories. Did this inspire John Scalzi's "Brain Pal" in his Old Man's War series? To save you the trouble, here's my synopsis of 3001: The Final Odyssey SPOILERS AFTER THIS POINT!!! (which I'm only hiding out of politeness. I'd much rather tell you about this book than have you suffer through reading it.) So, it's the year 3001. In an amazing coincidence, a ship finds the body of Frank Poole, the astronaut HAL knocked into space in 2001. Becuase of the advances in medical science, he can be brought back to life. Can we say Mary Sue boys and girls? I knew you could. And why write a knew character, when you can just bring one back from the dead. But I digress. He gets used to living 1000 in the future, and the author gets to hold forth on what's wrong with humanity in the second millinium. For poorly explained reasons, Frank decided to try and contact Dave Bowman, by landing on Europa. In this process he meets a philosopher who holds forth at lenght about the insanity of religion. Somehow this is related to landing on Europa, although I do not at all understand how. The landing works! Frank is now the only being in conact with the only being who can contact the Monolith. Whee. Frank goes back home, and goes on with his life. At some point, Dave gets in touch with him, basically pointing out that, based on 20th century information about humanity, the makers of the monolith have decided that Humanity has gone completely wrong and should be wiped out. Frank passes along that information, and watches as the great minds of the day figure out a way to stop their destruction. They gather the worst computer viruses they can find, send Frank back to Europa, and as him to ask Dave to be the Trojan Horse who delivers the computer viruses. They also give him a memory device to download himself to, to try and save him from the same fate as the monoliths. It works, humanity is just barely saved from destruction, but Dave's consciousness is still infected with the viruses he delivered and so cannot be contacted. Frank goes on with his life, missing his old friend. No, really. That's how it ends. In 2061, the Dave/Hal/Monolith entity thing downloaded a copy of Heywood Floyd. There's no hint of him in this book - nothing. ARG!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Peter Tillman

    My 1998 review: Rating: strong "A" for rigorous extrapolation, by a [then] living monument from the dawn of the Space Age. "3001" has accumulated mixed reviews, perhaps because it's not really a novel: think "Looking Backward" or "Ralph 124C41+". Thankfully, it's better-written than those, but Sir Arthur won't be remembered as a prose stylist. The plot outline is familiar by now - Frank Poole is revived after a thousand years as a cryo-corpse - flung into space in 2001 by the malevolent HAL. He My 1998 review: Rating: strong "A" for rigorous extrapolation, by a [then] living monument from the dawn of the Space Age. "3001" has accumulated mixed reviews, perhaps because it's not really a novel: think "Looking Backward" or "Ralph 124C41+". Thankfully, it's better-written than those, but Sir Arthur won't be remembered as a prose stylist. The plot outline is familiar by now - Frank Poole is revived after a thousand years as a cryo-corpse - flung into space in 2001 by the malevolent HAL. He marvels at the Wonders of the World of 3001, and gets reaquainted with Dave Bowman - and HAL - within the great Europa monolith. The Dream Team then saves humanity from the latest Monolith Crisis. Huh. The wonders of 3001 are genuine, and rigorously [note 1] extrapolated. Four great towers support a Star City ring around the world. Civilisation runs by tapping limitless energy from the vacuum. Spacecraft and Star City elevators operate on inertialess drives... - all carefully footnoted and put into historic context: Buckminster Fuller designed an orbital world-ring in 1951. The first material strong enough to build a Space Elevator is the buckytube, discovered in 1991, and so noted by the discoverer, Nobelist R. Smalley. Richard Feynman [allegedly] once remarked that the vacuum-energy contained in a coffee-cup could boil off the world's oceans. There are tantalizing hints that inertia and gravitation could be electromagnetic phenomena, linked thru the Zero Point field... Literature citations extend up to late 1996. The end-notes alone are worth the price of admission. Sir Arthur himself has historic context - he wrote "The Sentinel" in 1948, just 3 years after publishing the theory of communication satellites. Clarke and Kubrick started working on "2001" in 1964, using "The Sentinel" as a starting-point. Clarke's reputation is such that, if our civilisation is still extant in 3001, people will be reading his predictions with interest and (no doubt) amusement. He was a living monument of the early Space Age. No one who is seriously interested in the future of science and humanity should miss this book. ______________ [1] insofar as *any* 1000-yr extrapolation can be "rigorous". Playing with the net up is what I mean.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Perry Whitford

    Of the two astronauts awake on the spaceship Discovery when the super-computer HAL went nuts, Frank Poole certainly drew the short straw. While Dave Bowman ended up an immortal extraterrestrial hybrid with the powers of a god, poor Poole ended up left for dead and floating off into the cold vacuum of space. Left for dead, but not - as we discover at the start of the fourth and final Space Odyssey story - actually dead. His body frozen into an effective state of hibernation, Poole floats unconscio Of the two astronauts awake on the spaceship Discovery when the super-computer HAL went nuts, Frank Poole certainly drew the short straw. While Dave Bowman ended up an immortal extraterrestrial hybrid with the powers of a god, poor Poole ended up left for dead and floating off into the cold vacuum of space. Left for dead, but not - as we discover at the start of the fourth and final Space Odyssey story - actually dead. His body frozen into an effective state of hibernation, Poole floats unconscious around the galaxy for a thousand years before being picked up and successfully resuscitated. What must it feel like to fall asleep and wake up a millennium into the future? The first part of this book answers that with a mixture of culture-shock, humor and awe. As always, Clarke's extrapolations come from the latest scientific ideas of the time. Poole finds himself in city tens of thousands of miles above the equator, gets fitted with his own personal computer called a Braincap, watches asteroids being hurled at Venus in order to cool the planet down and meets genetically engineered dinosaurs that make ideal babysitters! When the story itself kicks in somewhere past the midway point, however, it proves to be thinner than the atmosphere of Mercury, nor does the ending qualify as a satisfactory conclusion to the writer's signature work. Still, the first half is fun, and the brief prologue which gives a quick account of the evolution of the Monoliths, entitled 'The Firstborn', is a stark and beautiful piece of writing that you wouldn't commonly associate with Clarke.

  9. 4 out of 5

    David

    Finally I've reached the end of the journey ... AND WHAT A WASTE OF TIME!!!! -_- Never again will I pick up anything written by Clarke. Honestly I can't understand how even got published. No identifiable Lead character in most of the books, no clear objective for what lead there was, the books meander around for the most part with dated and ludicrous speculation and no confrontation until the end, and what there was of a knockout closing seemed to appear out of nowhere. Internal conflict in the Finally I've reached the end of the journey ... AND WHAT A WASTE OF TIME!!!! -_- Never again will I pick up anything written by Clarke. Honestly I can't understand how even got published. No identifiable Lead character in most of the books, no clear objective for what lead there was, the books meander around for the most part with dated and ludicrous speculation and no confrontation until the end, and what there was of a knockout closing seemed to appear out of nowhere. Internal conflict in the major characters/protagonist was minor and facile. Again what I recommend is DO NOT read any part of this series...complete waste of time. Ahhhh....am I pissed at having wasted this much of my life on these books. Hope there is a hell so he's burning in the lake of fire reserved for failed, but published, authors. -_-

  10. 5 out of 5

    Efka

    A great ending of a series. And it's even more astonishing that Arthur C. Clarke managed to end his famous series by writing an utopia, which is not so very common a genre, isn't it? It's short, but it's really well done and the reason of taking us to the year 3001 is brilliant. Certainly 3001 is as good as 2001.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Patrick

    Not a very strong ending to the series but it was still enjoyable. I’ve enjoyed this series a lot. The first two were the best though.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Todd

    The late Arthur C. Clarke is one of my favorite science fiction writers and 2001: A Space Odyssey, based on an earlier short story of his, The Sentinel (1948), has always been something of a spiritual experience for me, even though I am not prone to spiritual experiences. But, given the prescient depiction of the moon and our galaxy in those pre-Apollo mission days, both film and book are breathtaking. For this current generation reared on CGI animation and blockbuster special effects and IMAX, The late Arthur C. Clarke is one of my favorite science fiction writers and 2001: A Space Odyssey, based on an earlier short story of his, The Sentinel (1948), has always been something of a spiritual experience for me, even though I am not prone to spiritual experiences. But, given the prescient depiction of the moon and our galaxy in those pre-Apollo mission days, both film and book are breathtaking. For this current generation reared on CGI animation and blockbuster special effects and IMAX, it’s hard to articulate the feeling of this Clarke/Kubrick classic as it moved across the big screen. There was a certain indescribable feeling – a breathless, “whoa” at the end of the film as the screen went dark and the theatre lights came on. No one in the auditorium moved to peel ourselves off the uncomfortable seats. It was a hot summer day and the air conditioning had died halfway through the movie…yet nothing mattered. This was my experience in 1977, nine years after the film’s release, and I had already seen both Star Wars and Close Encounters of the Third Kind, which were special effects wonders in comparison. There was just this weird feeling that something happened. The 11 year old that I used to be had just had the second of only two real theophanies I would ever have…the first one occurred when I was six years old. Unfortunately, the lingering eager naiveté that accompanied my pleasure over 2001 and even 2010 (I was a high school senior when both the novel and the movie were released) could help 3001 measure up to the first two. But, then at 44 I am a bit more jaded then when I was a geeky and easily awestruck teenage science fiction nerd. My expectations were perhaps unrealistic. Nostalgia can break your heart. 3001 is still compelling. The breadth of Clarke’s imagination has never failed to astound me as he takes current scientific knowledge and extrapolates the future world and fate of humanity. Just as in Kubrick’s film 2001: A Space Odyssey, which was broken into four components (the symbolism of 4 appeared throughout the film), Clarke has broken up his literary odyssey into four distinct novels that are not typically linear storytelling. As the final story opens we are a thousand years into the future from where the failed Discovery mission ended with Frank Poole being ejected from the spacecraft by Hal and the transformation of Dave Bowman into the star child. Heywood Floyd, Dr. Chandra and the Russian crew of the Leonov are also long gone. The earth and our small galaxy are different places…almost unrecognizable. Jupiter has been transformed into Lucifer, a dimmer version of our own sun, and it shines down on the evolving Europa. It is this future time that the 100 year old body of Frank Poole is found floating out in the outer reaches of the galaxy…frozen, but apparently not dead. He is miraculously revived and comes full circle in an odyssey of his own as he resumes his life in a world and time far removed from the early 21st century. As Frank adjusts to his life in this new world it would seem that the monolith is become active again. Soon Halman – the merged consciousness of Dave Bowman and the computer HAL – is being spotted again in various places. Soon he has an ominous message for his old friend Frank Poole. Clarke manages to tell a great story and retain an element of mystery about the powers or intelligences behind the monoliths, although I think he does a much better job of this in his Rama series, which are both technically and artfully his more superior works. But, those of you who share my sense of wonder over the world of the monoliths, Dave Bowman and Hal will still find something worthwhile in 3001 The Final Odyssey.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Stella

    This may be my favorite Odyssey. (although I thought that after each of the Odyssey books) But really, I am just so thrilled with this one, how genius to bring back Frank Poole from the dead and to put the 21st century scientist in the 31st century. I savored every word, every image, really and it read so plausible. Hope we will achieve that society from 31 century. (Clarke seems to think so in other of his books, there is always some kind of Utopia there) Check this out: "It was generally agreed t This may be my favorite Odyssey. (although I thought that after each of the Odyssey books) But really, I am just so thrilled with this one, how genius to bring back Frank Poole from the dead and to put the 21st century scientist in the 31st century. I savored every word, every image, really and it read so plausible. Hope we will achieve that society from 31 century. (Clarke seems to think so in other of his books, there is always some kind of Utopia there) Check this out: "It was generally agreed that Communism was the most perfect form of government; unfortunately, it had been demonstrated—at the cost of some hundreds of millions of lives—that it was only applicable to social insects, Robots Class II, and similar restricted categories. For imperfect human beings, the least-worse answer was Democracy, frequently defined as “Individual greed, moderated by an efficient but not too zealous government" But really, the life on Europa and the images and thoughts like this (also there in 2061 Odyssey I know) really made me feel out of this world. It was so disappointing having to be back in this plain, old, depressing century, every time I closed the book. Just look at this description: "He was searching a world more than a hundred times the area of Earth, and though he saw many wonders, nothing there hinted of intelligence. The radio voices of the great balloons carried only simple messages of warning or of fear. Even the hunters, who might have been expected to develop higher degrees of organization, were like the sharks in Earth’s oceans—mindless automata. And for all its breathtaking size and novelty, the biosphere of Jupiter was a fragile world, a place of mists and foam, of delicate silken threads and paper-thin tissues spun from the continual snowfall of petrochemicals formed by lightning in the upper atmosphere. Few of its constructs were more substantial than soap bubbles; its most awesome predators could be torn to shreds by even the feeblest of terrestrial carnivores. Like Europa on a vastly grander scale, Jupiter was an evolutionary cul-de-sac. Consciousness would never emerge here; even if it did, it would be doomed to a stunted existence. A purely aerial culture might develop, but in an environment where fire was impossible, and solids scarcely existed, it could never even reach the Stone Age." The idea of a Braincap is great. I am not sure how we would manage all that with all the crap that we see on the internet now - but it's such a great concept. I see there is a movie coming up in 2017. I hope they stick to the story. And the story is so plausible, even the civilization which created the Monolith can't just travel across the universe in matter of years, even if they could travel at the speed of light. (that is something that really bothers me in the distopyan sci-fi, they don't even try to solve that problem in any plausible way...) I am even filing this under my science shelf (I know, I know I shouldn't, but still, theoretically, it is all possible, right?) Anyway, so sorry this was the last Odyssey. Wish there was more. But i am off now to read other Arthur C. Clarke. (I am so glad he was such a prolific writer)

  14. 4 out of 5

    AndrewP

    Having read the other books in this series, and seen the movies, I thought I would read the last one to conclude the story. 1,000 years after the original Discovery mission, Frank Poole's body is recovered out around Neptune. Future technology allows him to be revived and Clarke does some imagining of life and technology in the year 3001 in his classic style. This part of the book I found pretty good. The only things he got wrong were the developments in computer technology. We are getting close Having read the other books in this series, and seen the movies, I thought I would read the last one to conclude the story. 1,000 years after the original Discovery mission, Frank Poole's body is recovered out around Neptune. Future technology allows him to be revived and Clarke does some imagining of life and technology in the year 3001 in his classic style. This part of the book I found pretty good. The only things he got wrong were the developments in computer technology. We are getting close to what he imagined 980 years ahead of schedule:) Considering the book was written in 1997 it's still not that bad. My only real problem with the book was the ending. It mimics the ending of a certain movie that also received a lot of criticism. I'm not going to say which movie as that would be a huge spoiler. You will have to read it for yourself. If you have read the original 3 books then read this one, don't try and read it as a stand alone.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Todd

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. This is one of my favorite books of all time because of its brutal and humbling honesty. I couldn't have chosen a better coda for the 2001 storyline, it left me absolutely breathless. -- warning, serious spoilers -- After reading the ending of the Rendezvous with Rama series I was expecting Clarke to pretty much end things the same way, on a magnanimous upnote. With 2001 we learn that there is a vastly superior alien intelligence that has intervened in the natural evolution of apes to accelerate This is one of my favorite books of all time because of its brutal and humbling honesty. I couldn't have chosen a better coda for the 2001 storyline, it left me absolutely breathless. -- warning, serious spoilers -- After reading the ending of the Rendezvous with Rama series I was expecting Clarke to pretty much end things the same way, on a magnanimous upnote. With 2001 we learn that there is a vastly superior alien intelligence that has intervened in the natural evolution of apes to accelerate a group of them toward sentience. They use the monolith as their all-purpose tool to carry out the upgrades, then they leave one under the dirt on the moon so that some day, millions of years later, the creatures they engineered will find it and give the makers a status update. In 2001 we find it, uncover it, and activate it, and it sends off its data. In 2010 we discover that the monolith, operating independently from its makers, has started the process anew for some creatures evolving on Europa. The monolith gives humanity a warning about its warring ways, and then goes on to advance and protect this new life. All the while the monolith is just running its default program, gathering data, and sending it off somewhere at the speed of light to some headquarters 1000 light years away. That's the kicker that makes this story so compelling, in 3001 we learn the maker's response to the data on us they received a thousand years earlier. And what is that response? Do we get a magnanimous pat on the back from our alien parents? Do we get a stern but loving chiding? No The monolith is instructed to block out the sun from Earth.... After millions of years of waiting... after all the effort it took to create and monitor humanity, the alien race decides we're a failed experiment. The prognosis is death. God I LOVE Arthur C Clarke! No magnanimity for the poor bastard reader, no tying off his masterpiece in lovely little bows for our amusement, no forgiveness, no mercy, just DIE you degenerate earth scum!!! :D I've read alot of the other reviews about how the ending just seemed like a ripoff of independance day, the whole virus thing, but that was just a one shot silly 2 hour movie! This series is a science fiction legend! The apollo astronauts were even quoted as joking that they hope they find a monolith when they land! This story is a part of our 20th century cultural identity and it ends with DIE YOU DEGENERATE EARTH SCUM!!! :D Brilliant, biting, painful, and wonderful. The only thing I suppose I would change about this book would be to just completely remove all hope. In the end the monolith is destroyed with a virus, but sends off a last scream to the makers before it fizzles offline, so humanity knows it's got a thousand more years before the makers realize the first attempt to kill us failed, so there's some unspoken hope that maybe we can organize a defense in the interim, or bake them a planet-sized "please don't kill us" cake, or suck up to the europans so they'll give us a recommendation or something. If it was me sitting next to Arthur C Clarke in his den as he wrote this, bouncing up and down and chanting "you da man!!!", I would have tried to convince him to have the virus *fail* to stop the monolith. I would have had the monolith trip into some secondary killbot protocol where it just finished off the human race old school style, with a violent bloodbath, but that's just me ;)

  16. 5 out of 5

    T

    3001: The Final Odyssey brings Arthur C. Clarke's famed series to a merciful end, closing out what was perhaps a misguided effort from the beginning, or at least from 14 years after the first book, when a sequel was written. Trouble began brewing in the Odyssey series with the release of 2010: Odyssey Two, in which Clarke decided to abandon all differences between the previous book and the movie version, and act as though only the movie events had occurred. As someone who greatly preferred the bo 3001: The Final Odyssey brings Arthur C. Clarke's famed series to a merciful end, closing out what was perhaps a misguided effort from the beginning, or at least from 14 years after the first book, when a sequel was written. Trouble began brewing in the Odyssey series with the release of 2010: Odyssey Two, in which Clarke decided to abandon all differences between the previous book and the movie version, and act as though only the movie events had occurred. As someone who greatly preferred the book, this disturbed me, in much the same way that George Lucas' constant tinkering with the Star Wars universe irks those fans. The third book brought further unexplained changes, and 3001 continues this tradition; including its protagonist, Frank Poole, having been born in 1996--he went on the Jupiter mission at 5 years old?? Regardless, the story within the novel is the important thing, yes? For this final outing, having exhausted the surviving cast of 2001, Clarke manages to bring back the dead one, Frank Poole, who had been drifting through the solar system for an entire millennium. He is found floating around and is revived...somehow, it's not explained very well. Now he is a man out of time and must adjust to the human experience of the future, as well as tying up loose ends with those pesky black monoliths. Apparently that experience involves technology and physics; lots of it! Every chapter, and indeed the entire book, seems to end more quickly than it should, so that you never get a sense of what it's like to live in this world of the future, except that you'll probably be doing it in a giant space elevator tower, or maybe on a moon somewhere. Frank will occasionally have academic discussions about the past thousand years, including plenty about how everyone decided to abandon every religion and become agnostics, or...something, this is also not explained very well (Clarke seems to be particularly annoyed with the Catholic institution, harping on the Middle Ages repeatedly). Even with Frank as our eyes and ears into this world, you don't get much of a sense for what he actually does with himself, when he's not flying spaceships and investigating monoliths. Whole decades, near as I can figure, are skipped over with barely a sentence to explain the transition in plot. Indeed, the most interesting passages come from text which was lifted verbatim from the previous novels. It does have some great scientific ideas being narrated, such as the four massive towers (it was six in Odyssey Three) built along the equator of Earth, leading up to the "sky city" ring in geostationary orbit. Or the palm-implanted data exchange system which tells everyone you meet about yourself (Palmbook?). There are many interesting little tidbits like that in the novel, and perhaps that is the reason for its existence: to inspire technological advances and furtherance of creative ideas in SF literature. Perhaps it succeeds in that manner. On the whole, though, this seems like more of an exercise in narrating interesting scientific papers, than in providing a compelling story. Even the ultimate conclusion of matters with the big questions of the series are fairly disappointing, and seem like they're quite different from what they may have been if Clarke had written this sooner than three decades after the original novel. The plot is very dry and sterile, with little emotion or the sense of wonder and discovery that the first two books managed to imbue. It is a conclusion that is running on the fumes of past glory. Mercifully short, it is worth a library rental, if you've read this far into the saga, but I'd stop short of a purchase.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Μιτς Γιωτίξ

    Copy pasting from previous books instead of writing new descriptions, progressing the story only on the last 30-40 pages and closing this awesome series with a bland ending. Needless to say, it was a kind of a let down, unlike the first and second books which were AMAZING. I seriously hope that Clarke doesn't do the same "mistakes" in his other books because I seriously enjoy his writing style and subjects. I'm giving it 3 stars instead of 2 because of Clarke's presentation of future humanity, an Copy pasting from previous books instead of writing new descriptions, progressing the story only on the last 30-40 pages and closing this awesome series with a bland ending. Needless to say, it was a kind of a let down, unlike the first and second books which were AMAZING. I seriously hope that Clarke doesn't do the same "mistakes" in his other books because I seriously enjoy his writing style and subjects. I'm giving it 3 stars instead of 2 because of Clarke's presentation of future humanity, and because of some interesting notes written by the author.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Riju Ganguly

    Nah, this particular volume has nothing to do with 2001 or its events, except for sharing certain names. It is a futuristic vision of earth: rather alluring, but not very likely to materialise in near future. After the highs of the first few books in the series, this was definitely a damp squib.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Bishnu Bhatta Buttowski

    I have mixed feeling about this book. There's this thought provoking thing I came across when I read this book. HAS IT EVER OCCURRED IT TO YOU THAT WE MIGHT BE THE SUBJECT OF SOME EXPERIMENT PERFORMED BY INTELLIGENT SPECIES TO SEE HOW INTELLIGENT LIFE WOULD FLOURISH AND TURN OUT TO BE ON SOME PLACE, GIVEN THE FAVORABLE ENVIRONMENT BECAUSE THEIR ONLY OBJECTIVE IS SOWING THE SEEDS OF INTELLIGENCE IN THIS UNIVERSE? Perhaps this is one thing that will prevail to you during or at the end of this boo I have mixed feeling about this book. There's this thought provoking thing I came across when I read this book. HAS IT EVER OCCURRED IT TO YOU THAT WE MIGHT BE THE SUBJECT OF SOME EXPERIMENT PERFORMED BY INTELLIGENT SPECIES TO SEE HOW INTELLIGENT LIFE WOULD FLOURISH AND TURN OUT TO BE ON SOME PLACE, GIVEN THE FAVORABLE ENVIRONMENT BECAUSE THEIR ONLY OBJECTIVE IS SOWING THE SEEDS OF INTELLIGENCE IN THIS UNIVERSE? Perhaps this is one thing that will prevail to you during or at the end of this book. Sometimes, author brings the dialogues or text from prequels, which is so boring coming across the same subject matter again but other times, the text gets so interesting! I haven't read that much science fiction books, but reading upon 2001 series, I can tell, technologies described is based upon some Scientific experimentation/papers- in each and everyone of these books- how cool is that actually! Talking about a cool thing, its epilogue is also interesting to read-I have read every text out in the book from cover to cover. [LAUGH] I would recommend this series '2001: A space Odyssey' to every science fiction lovers who have perseverance and enthusiasm for futuristic technologies and willingness to go through the texts.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Saur

    Well at least Dr. Heywood Floyd was not alive thousand years later. Frank Poole, who was supposedly killed by the manic AI HAL in the first book of the series, gets rescued and revived. I found this to be less unbelievable than having Dr.Floyd be a 103-year old in the last book. First half of the book was about Poole getting used to life in the third millenium. This was great scifi narrative and I enjoyed how for once, mankind had managed to create an utopia instead of a dystopia. Everything was Well at least Dr. Heywood Floyd was not alive thousand years later. Frank Poole, who was supposedly killed by the manic AI HAL in the first book of the series, gets rescued and revived. I found this to be less unbelievable than having Dr.Floyd be a 103-year old in the last book. First half of the book was about Poole getting used to life in the third millenium. This was great scifi narrative and I enjoyed how for once, mankind had managed to create an utopia instead of a dystopia. Everything was going well and the wars and other horrors of the time we currently live in were a distant memory. There was not a great revelation and universe changing consequences in this book, quite unlike the other books in the series. This one was more like uncertainty, followed by a reaction -kind of situation. I found that not to be a bad thing. The happenings fit in with the rest of the series and complete the saga. All in all this was a fine end to a legendary scifi series.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Tomislav

    This is the last volume of the series, published in 1997 just before the change of millenium, and is set near the time of the change of the next millenium in 3001. The astronaut Frank Poole, who was killed in the original 2001 by HAL is found drifting out of the solar system and brought back to life. Frank gives a good vantage point from which to view the changes that have come about in humanity's existence over the next thousand years - which are not as much as you might think. Finally, we come This is the last volume of the series, published in 1997 just before the change of millenium, and is set near the time of the change of the next millenium in 3001. The astronaut Frank Poole, who was killed in the original 2001 by HAL is found drifting out of the solar system and brought back to life. Frank gives a good vantage point from which to view the changes that have come about in humanity's existence over the next thousand years - which are not as much as you might think. Finally, we come to learn more about just where it is that David Bowman and HAL went, and about the monoliths themselves. This is the only book of the four that I had not read previously, but I'm glad I did, because it does bring some closure to the concepts introduced and developed throughout the series of books.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Réal Laplaine

    When I was 15 I went to the theater and watched 2001. Blew me away, not to mention inspiring me in the years to come as an author myself. I have just finished reading 3001 and I must say that Mr. Clarke has put the perfect spin to the odyssey, as we follow Frank Poole and Dave Bowman through yet another amazing story, and one that ends with the fate of Earth and humanity, in their hands. Wonderful story. It leaves the door open for a follow up, but without Arthur C. Clarke around to pen it, I do When I was 15 I went to the theater and watched 2001. Blew me away, not to mention inspiring me in the years to come as an author myself. I have just finished reading 3001 and I must say that Mr. Clarke has put the perfect spin to the odyssey, as we follow Frank Poole and Dave Bowman through yet another amazing story, and one that ends with the fate of Earth and humanity, in their hands. Wonderful story. It leaves the door open for a follow up, but without Arthur C. Clarke around to pen it, I don't know that anyone could do it justice; so we may have to live with the conclusion of 3001 - one that doesn't disappoint, but certainly leaves one yearning for a life continuum.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Thom Gore

    This was a quick read, but it reminded me why I love science fiction.q

  24. 5 out of 5

    prcardi

    Storyline: 2/5 Characters: 3/5 Writing Style: 3/5 World: 3/5 This was a coda more than a concluding volume. Arthur C. Clarke was 80 years old when this was published. Throughout the reading I felt like I was listening to a speech from an aged yet highly decorated senior citizen. He would muse, he would ponder, he would pontificate on things the newer generation were already engaging with at much higher levels and newer tools. You indulge the author though because he's earned respect throughout his l Storyline: 2/5 Characters: 3/5 Writing Style: 3/5 World: 3/5 This was a coda more than a concluding volume. Arthur C. Clarke was 80 years old when this was published. Throughout the reading I felt like I was listening to a speech from an aged yet highly decorated senior citizen. He would muse, he would ponder, he would pontificate on things the newer generation were already engaging with at much higher levels and newer tools. You indulge the author though because he's earned respect throughout his long life. This latest delivery showed that he still had control of realistic, down-to-earth characters. He retained ownership of his original ideas and could still generate that spark of wonder which made his earlier works so beloved. In between the old-man-tries-to-keep-up-with-the-times future speculations, he would sometimes again lay out technological visions over which to marvel. Those hoping for grand endings are going to be disappointed. Clarke didn't aim to dazzle here; he was happy to let the Space Odyssey go out in gentle reverie. This was Arthur C. Clarke's memorial to Hal, Frank Poole, David Bowman, and 1:4:9.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Dan

    It's a thousand years since Frank Poole's death at the metaphorical hands of HAL and humanity has entered a new golden age. A spaceship finds Poole floating deep in the solar system and with the help of 3001 technology he is revived. Poole's second life allows him to see what humanity has become and soon realizes he might be may still be able to once again meet fellow astronaut Dave Bowman, or the thing he has become anyway. Straight away I'm afraid I must point out this last Odyssey book is the It's a thousand years since Frank Poole's death at the metaphorical hands of HAL and humanity has entered a new golden age. A spaceship finds Poole floating deep in the solar system and with the help of 3001 technology he is revived. Poole's second life allows him to see what humanity has become and soon realizes he might be may still be able to once again meet fellow astronaut Dave Bowman, or the thing he has become anyway. Straight away I'm afraid I must point out this last Odyssey book is the worst of the bunch. I wouldn't say it is bad a such but it lack the drama of the previous books. For a start there is very little space travel here, which is what the Odyssey books are all about. Frank explores the future of humanity and this is the best thing about the book. Clarke's vision of the year 3001 is original, intriguing and believable. It almost feels like Clarke has been to the 3001 himself. Much more could have been made of Frank feeling a man out of his time though, but unfortunately the Frank has as much character as one of the series' infamous monoliths. It feels like Clarke got 3/4 of the way through the book and realized that though he had shared some interesting ideas nothing had really happened yet. So he decides to make the humans find a way to destroy the solar system's main monolith on Europa. There is no real sense of struggle though and the solution is identical to a popular sci-fi film of the 90s. Clarke's joint work with Stephen Baxter in the Time Odyssey series shows what this part of the book should have been like. As with all of Clarke's work it has some great ideas and it does tie up the series successfully but given the quality of the first four books, this final one is quite the let down.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Tim

    Can a whole civilization be a Mary Sue? This book was an unfortunate reminder that, for all his imagination, Clarke remained a creature of his time. This is one of his last novels (a novella, really) and it was clearly an effort to imagine his idea of a plausible future utopia, but it fell well short on both plausibility, and utopia. His faith in a technological ascension was so strong that it becomes detached here from humanity; so many of his conceptions of this 1000-year future society are inc Can a whole civilization be a Mary Sue? This book was an unfortunate reminder that, for all his imagination, Clarke remained a creature of his time. This is one of his last novels (a novella, really) and it was clearly an effort to imagine his idea of a plausible future utopia, but it fell well short on both plausibility, and utopia. His faith in a technological ascension was so strong that it becomes detached here from humanity; so many of his conceptions of this 1000-year future society are incoherent or morally repugnant yet go unremarked, that they can only be understood as the author's ideals. E.g.: although there are only 1 billion humans now, everyone subsists on artificial food; brain scans deemed deviant get their users sequestered from society; spirituality and psychotherapy are deemed pathologies that have "long since" been weeded out of society. Uh... sure. Not to mention the whole society getting billed as egalitarian, even though the narrative clearly dwells among the few highly privileged, with occasional dismissive glances at the indistinguishable masses who exist solely to serve the main characters. Add in that there was almost no actual story, and what there was reduced the preceding mystique of the series -- the monoliths -- to a dumb machine(view spoiler)[ that succumbs to a computer virus (hide spoiler)] . Give me a break.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Blind_guardian

    I have quite enjoyed reading Arthur C Clarke's four-parter, but one of Clarke's tricks does not hold up well to a marathon run through the series. I noticed that every book takes large sections of text from earlier books, pasting them in as flashbacks that are word for word reproductions of what he said the first time. If there were supposed to be subtle changes from one book to the next, I didn't see any. I've only seen David Bowman's flythrough of Jupiter and visit to the oceans of Europa abou I have quite enjoyed reading Arthur C Clarke's four-parter, but one of Clarke's tricks does not hold up well to a marathon run through the series. I noticed that every book takes large sections of text from earlier books, pasting them in as flashbacks that are word for word reproductions of what he said the first time. If there were supposed to be subtle changes from one book to the next, I didn't see any. I've only seen David Bowman's flythrough of Jupiter and visit to the oceans of Europa about 4 times now. Other than that annoying trick, I have enjoyed the books, though 3001 is probably the weakest of the lot. Especially since it seems to forget 'Big Brother's' use of wormhole technology in 2001 ... unless that was all a hallucination within the Monolith.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Tom Brennan

    It feels like Mr. Clarke is tying up loose ends in the final novel in the Space Odyssey series. Events from the other books not previously shown are explored. Long standing questions are answered. As a standalone novel though, the plot is pretty static, and much of it is taken up with Clarke's descriptions of what has happened in the time jump between the first three novels and the current one. Like many sci-fi stories about Earth it is interesting to note what technology is included in the book It feels like Mr. Clarke is tying up loose ends in the final novel in the Space Odyssey series. Events from the other books not previously shown are explored. Long standing questions are answered. As a standalone novel though, the plot is pretty static, and much of it is taken up with Clarke's descriptions of what has happened in the time jump between the first three novels and the current one. Like many sci-fi stories about Earth it is interesting to note what technology is included in the book and which real life technological advances have not, making 3001 a sort of time capsule. An easy read, I liked it, but not much enthused by it.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Edward Davies

    This was an okay ending to the set of books, with a story line that wasn't as confusing as some of the instalments that preceded it. That said, the ending was a little abrupt and seemed to come out of nowhere, and it would have been nice to have a more rounded finish to the series!

  30. 5 out of 5

    Katie

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. An end to a series with incredible concepts - absolutely brilliant and mind-blowing at the start, only to be slowly eroded away into a kind of disappointing finish. 3001 (like 2061) again takes as its main character someone who could have been cut-and-pasted into any Arthur C Clarke story, give or take a different backstory. I find this is a recurring issue with Arthur C Clarke. Frank Poole is pretty non-existent as a character. However, I can usually forgive that deficiency because of how amazi An end to a series with incredible concepts - absolutely brilliant and mind-blowing at the start, only to be slowly eroded away into a kind of disappointing finish. 3001 (like 2061) again takes as its main character someone who could have been cut-and-pasted into any Arthur C Clarke story, give or take a different backstory. I find this is a recurring issue with Arthur C Clarke. Frank Poole is pretty non-existent as a character. However, I can usually forgive that deficiency because of how amazing the concepts of the stories are. This was, to a degree, the case here. I loved (to a point!) the vision and intimate detail of how life might possibly be in 3001. Arthur C takes (at least in comparison to the other sci-fi’s I enjoy) a much more utopian and optimistic view, with no wars and the harmony of technology and human life. I particularly loved the ideas of the huge space towers. As well as looking to the future, I always enjoy how he looks back at the past as well, and injects a bit of history and politics into it, obviously taking the 20th century as a reference point, due to when the book was written. I feel like the crux of Arthur C’s Odyssey quadrilogy is the Monolith itself. That is absolutely the most interesting conception of the series. I like how it remains debated and full of conjecture, with no one really knowing what its true purpose is (or, I should say ‘their’ as there are multiple throughout the solar system, and assumedly, beyond it). It is a true, bewildering cosmic entity and I *love* that, especially now mixed with the amalgamation of Hal and Dave and their position as its agents. Without a doubt, that should have been leant on harder, with less emphasis on more mundane aspects. I couldn’t help thinking when I was reading it, ‘wow this part could be the basis of a really interesting story’ or ‘this could have been expanded so much more’. The biggest flaw for me was the final part – not just of the book but of the entire series. The culmination of this brilliant arc of the Monolith – from its discovery in 2001 to its mind-bending mystery to its slow unveiling through 2010 – is so disappointing. Arthur C dips into one of his infamous ‘that could have been far more of an interesting plot!’ traps, and brings up the idea of viruses (computer and biological) being stored on the moon. Within about two short chapters, they have been delivered to the Monolith in order to infect it, due to fear that it is going to turn the earth into the planetary version of a supernova. This happens so quickly, and should have been expanded a lot, lot more, especially as it is the climax of such a philosophical and intriguing series. In fact, that could have been developed over the entire book, and Frank’s back and forth interfacing with his ‘mentor’ and leisure trips around the space tower could have been cut way back. It takes way too long for the plot to get going in a lot of Arthur C books, and as much as I love his worldbuilding, I always want so much more to take place within them! Overall, however, the two more mediocre books of the series (2061 and 3001) don’t diminish how much I adore it as a whole. 2001 is still incredible, and has been a big influence on my own writing, and what I like to read and watch and so on, and for that, I can’t criticise this series (or Arthur C Clarke) too much.

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