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Voyage From Yesteryear (1999)

Voyage from Yesteryear (1999)
3.86 of 5 Votes: 1
0671577980 (ISBN13: 9780671577988)
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Voyage From Yesteryear (1999)
Voyage From Yesteryear (1999)

About book: This book is one of my all time favorites. I actually read it first when I was about 12 years old. I found it, dogeared and in rough shape, in the bottom of a box in an old run down used bookstore. It was the image of the ship on the cover that intrigued me and sparked my imagination, but what occurred next I couldn't have foreseen. This is the novel that sparked my love affair with Science Fiction and the Speculative Fiction genre as a whole.You can read the back of the book for a description of what happens, I'm not planning on retelling the narrative or anything in this short review. In this novel, James Hogan tells a story that is believable, adventurous, wondrous, and uplifting. ---------------------------Complete side-note, and a personal story about me & this novel.When I first read this story at the age of 12 or so, it was my first taste of "Science Fiction" in the novel form. It blew me away, and I immediately started to consume as much of the genre as I could. I always remembered the story set forth in this novel, but the skills of a 12 year old Bookworm don't match those of one in his 30's. You see, I lost the original before I even learned to drive and couldn't (after years) remember the title or the authors name.This posed a huge problem for me, you see over the years I found myself wanting to go back and re-experience this story. I wanted to re-read this book more than any book I had read. The 12 year old me of course didn't know that he would ever want to "re-read" a book after having read it. He couldn't comprehend that.So here I am in my 30's and I started thinking about this book again. Not having thought about it in years my mind was automatically in the position of "I won't be able to find that book!" I had never stopped to re-evaluate the methods that I had at my disposal. Until just recently when it dawned on me to get onto and simply describe the story and then ask.It took 3 hours for someone to come back with a reply and direct me not only to a wiki page for the book, but to tell me the authors name and describe the book even more fully than I had.Elation. That was all I could feel. Not letting go of this one again.

While many of the themes and ideas in this book are nothing new to modern science fiction readers, I nonetheless found the way in which they were collected to be compelling. I don't know if I believe that such a society would actually work, but it is an interesting thought. I especially liked the idea of a society in which basically everyone works freelance. Amusingly, I had wondered if this book was "libertarian" in addition to falling under the post-scarcity heading. In fact, it was awarded the 1983 Prometheus Award for libertarian science fiction. The downside to reading this book right after "They'd Rather Be Right" is that I've really had enough of hearing about elitists.
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Brent Moffitt
Excellent read. Interesting discussion on religion and the origin of the universe. Also included some very logical-sounding discourse on basic building block of matter. Most fascinating and insightful opinions were expressed about how human society/community is/should be constructed. He appeared to believe that if we could avoid nuclear annihilation we would evolve a non-commercial based society where everyone could pursue activities best suited to their abilities and inclinations. A very thoughtful book that told an interesting story, but even more, presented some very interesting ideas.
R. Michael Litchfield
Badger had recommended this novel several times over the years so I finally made a point of checking this 33 year old book out of the library. It stood the test of time very well and was in fact rather prescient about what we now call a post-scarcity economy. Nifty little "The Earthlings are Comming!!" story with some effective battle scenes. Not a great novel though, it needed a more ruthless editor as several of the passage were too plodding and the characters didn't really have much depth. It would make a good movie or mini series I think. I wondered why Hogan didn't get more play when the entire post-scarcity thing was being the hip new cool thing to talk about, he wrote several books that have popped up on my radar and I am pretty sure I have read at least some. So why didn't he get more praise? Well turns out that sometime during the 90s he went a bit funny in the head and started Dances with Conspiracy Theories and became an HIV skeptic, then started questioning evolution and when he got to holocaust denialism people did what people do with crazy old Englishmen nattering on about conspiracies in Northern California.
Sean Randall
"Success is like a fart. Only your own smells nice"In this lackadaisically whimsical plodder of a novel, Hogan poses a future where an exploratory spacecraft is sent off with genetic material to seed a planet in war-torn tension-filled times on Earth. Years later when things settle down, a US vessel sets out to see the results of the mission - along with a European and Asiatic craft on their heals, all intent upon converting the Humans that aren't quite Human to their individual belief systems and governmental regimes.Naturally, things don't go to plan and the people of Chiron are happily doing well without external intervention. The Chironian way of life is quite appealing to several of the Novel's main characters and it is a fascinating, if sometimes slow, insight into their lives and the lifestyle of an alienly Human culture.
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