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P. 1
The Songs of Distant Earth

The Songs of Distant Earth

Ratings:

3.67

(410)
|Views: 19,939|Likes:
Published by RosettaBooks
More than two thousand years in the future, a small human colony thrives on the ocean paradise of Thalassa—sent there centuries ago to continue the human race before the Earth’s destruction.Thalassa’s resources are vast—and the human colony has lived a bucolic life there. But their existence is threatened when the spaceship Magellan arrives on their world—carrying one million refugees from Earth, fleeing the dying planet.Reputed to be Arthur C. Clarke’s favorite novel, The Songs of Distant Earth addresses several fascinating scientific questions unresolved in their time—including the question of why so few neutrinos from the sun have been measured on Earth. In addition, Clarke presents an inventive depiction of the use of vacuum energy to power spacecraft—and the technical logistics of space travel near the speed of light.
More than two thousand years in the future, a small human colony thrives on the ocean paradise of Thalassa—sent there centuries ago to continue the human race before the Earth’s destruction.Thalassa’s resources are vast—and the human colony has lived a bucolic life there. But their existence is threatened when the spaceship Magellan arrives on their world—carrying one million refugees from Earth, fleeing the dying planet.Reputed to be Arthur C. Clarke’s favorite novel, The Songs of Distant Earth addresses several fascinating scientific questions unresolved in their time—including the question of why so few neutrinos from the sun have been measured on Earth. In addition, Clarke presents an inventive depiction of the use of vacuum energy to power spacecraft—and the technical logistics of space travel near the speed of light.

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Publish date: Nov 30, 2012
Added to Scribd: Jun 28, 2013
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercialISBN:9780795325847
List Price: $8.99

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04/13/2014

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9780795325847

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jandm_1 reviewed this
Rated 4/5
This book was recommended to me as being a sci-fi novel that (amongst other things) explores the implications of a post-God society, I found it didn't do that. It offered two lines of reason why most of the world had effectively 'deprecated' God; first from the usual simplistic and debatable line that religion caused more problems in the world than good. The second was at least slightly more creative, suggesting that the field of "statistical theology" grew up, which would show that there was just not enough scientific evidence for an involved "Alpha" (personal) Deity. This But it was interesting to note that this society couldn't deal with the question of whether an "Omega" (Creator) Deity existed, as that couldn't be tested.So, disappointingly close to the current trend for scientism, not understanding that there's more to the world than scientific explanations and tests.However, this was in most other ways an excellent read, with a more emotionally rich exploration than I was expecting of the highs and lows of contact with this similar race of people "from the stars". And suggesting what would happen to earth's society should the time come when our Sun would be known to be a few centuries away from exploding.
edspicer_1 reviewed this
It was a very detailed, well-written book. It gives a possibility of what might be the future of the human race hundreds of years from now. It might get confusing at some points, and you may have to look back a little, but you will never regret reading this book.5Q, 3PThis book is best suited for highschoolers and adults.It was selected after hearing about the author, and because of the intriguing title. (It gives a hint that the story doesn't take place on earth, a science fiction novel.)Grade (of reviewer): 9th(TH-AHS-NC)
audacity88_1 reviewed this
Rated 3/5
Clarke's intent, as stated in his preface, is partly to "creat[ing] a wholly realistic piece of fiction on the interstellar theme" - as compared to Star Trek and Star Wars, which, because of their reliance upon faster-than-light travel, are not truly science fiction. In this, Clarke succeds.However, he fails to create characters or a society that are consistently interesting enough to emerge from this backdrop of realism. Clarke is a strong writer and thinker, and I frequently came upon passages worth underlining. But upon finishing the novel I did not feel that sweet sadness that comes from bidding farewell to a world so vivid that it felt real. Perhaps realism is not enough: the characters in Star Wars, despite doing impossible things, come to life in a way that the people of Magellan and θαλασσα do not.
jasignature reviewed this
Rated 5/5
A very relaxing and idyllic story. Can't help but enjoy Arthur's slant upon a flighty American visiting a nice place here in Oceania. Great cover and title. This is one of those novels that hits the 'sweet spot' which stands the test of time and beyond the realm of just Arthur C.Clarke and Sci-Fi/Fantasy fans.
farree_1 reviewed this
Rated 3/5
A reasonably well written story by Clarke (my favorites are "The City and the Stars" and "Childhood's End.") Do check out Mike Oldfield's CD "The Songs of Distant Earth," which is based on this story. If you want to know more about the planet portrayed, I suggest Jack Vance's "Blue World."
chesbet reviewed this
Rated 5/5
great book. very inspiring
rodrichards_1 reviewed this
Rated 3/5
Revisiting Clarke upon the news of his death, and also in preparation for a sermon on humanism. Not his best, but the chapter: Whatever Gods May Be... is worth the price of admission.
cbradley_77 reviewed this
Rated 4/5
A quick read and an interesting story about colonization. I thought it was a decently good book exploring some of the issues we will face when we go out and colonize other worlds. Books like these only prove Clarke’s genius and storytelling imagination.
barakketh reviewed this
Rated 4/5
I quite enjoyed reading this book about the end of the earth and some of the possible settlement strategies that might be realistically attempted. I am not sure that I agree with Clarke that it is necessary to stick strictly to science to write science fiction. I found that this made the book a little dull at times. My favorite parts were around the interaction between the two human cultures.
darla_2 reviewed this
Rated 4/5
Not a bad story about humans colonizing other planets, and an encounter between those from the first wave and those from the last wave, but nothing much happens. And I admit, I was turned off by the author's note at the beginning of the book which pretty much said that everybody else claiming to write science fiction is really writing fantasy, and he's the only one who writes real science fiction. Get over yourself, already. Bah.

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The Songs of Distant Earth