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If we accept the conclusions of Childhood's End, instead of a nuclear holocaust we The beginning of the end is heralded by the Overlords, mysterious aliens in . Get this from a library! Childhood's end. [Arthur C Clarke]. Childhood's End is a science fiction novel by the British author Arthur C. Clarke. The story follows the peaceful alien invasion of Earth by the mysterious.


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Childhoods End. Arthur C. Clarke. Childhoods End Arthur C. Clarke Del Ray ISBN: EARTH AND THE OVERLORDS THE volcano that had reared Taratua u. Arthur C Clarke - Childhoods End. Read more · Clarke, Arthur C - Childhoods End · Read more · Arthur C. Clarke - Childhoods End. Read more. In the near future, enormous silver spaceships appear without warning over mankind's largest cities. They belong to the Overlords, an alien race far superior to.

Yes, they are a tragic race. But then, I'm handed a full-stop. Along the frontiers that would soon be gone forever the guards had been doubled -but the soldiers eyed each other with a still inarticulate friendliness. Therefore, when love is lost, we are wont to deify and pray to it as well as for it. Some Overlords remain on Earth to study the children from a safe distance. We will always have been part of their lives, and when they meet us we will not seem so-strange-as we would do to you.

Brian W. Aldiss and David Wingrove wrote that Childhood's End rested on "a rather banal philosophical idea," but that Clarke "expressed [it] in simple but aspiring language that vaguely recalls the Psalms [and] combined [it] with a dramatized sense of loss [for] undeniable effect.

In the s, director Stanley Kubrick was interested in making a film adaptation of the novel, but blacklisted director Abraham Polonsky had already optioned it. Instead, Kubrick collaborated with Clarke on adapting the short story " The Sentinel " into what eventually became A Space Odyssey However, Universal discovered that its contracts with Arthur C.

Clarke - some of which dated back to - were out of date. These contractual difficulties were resolved in and DeGuere worked with legendary comic book artist Neal Adams on preproduction drawings and other effect.

The project had Clarke's approval. As of , rights to the novel were held by Universal Pictures , with director Kimberly Peirce attached to a project. Members of the British Progressive rock band Genesis read the book and adapted part of the story into lyrics for their single Watcher Of The Skies , though the song does not take its title from the novel.

David Elgood first proposed a radio adaptation of the novel in , but nothing came of it until director Brian Lighthill revisited the proposal and obtained the rights in After Lighthill received a go-ahead from BBC Radio in , he commissioned a script from Tony Mulholland, resulting in a new, two-part adaptation.

On October 28, , Audible. An AudioFile review commended Summerer's narration as "smoothly presented and fully credible". Filming is set to begin in Melbourne in December, My Dashboard Get Published.

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Sign in with your eLibrary Card close. Flag as Inappropriate. Email this Article. Childhood's End Article Id: Childhood's End. Childhood's End Cover of first edition hardcover. Clarke observed balloons like these floating over the city in He recalls that his earliest idea for the story may have originated with this scene, with the giant balloons becoming alien ships in the novel.

See also: The Unmanifested Destiny of Arthur C. Chicago IL: A Capella Books, , pp. Barlowe, Wayne Douglas Baxter, John Stanley Kubrick: A Biography. Basic Books. Bogle, Donald E. May Ebony 24 7: Booker, M. Keith; Anne-Marie Thomas The Science Fiction Handbook.

Clarke, Arthur C. The Collected Stories of Arthur C. Davenport, Basil Du Bois, William Elder, Robert K. Hart Guzman, Don Howes, Alan B. Arthur C. Taplinger Publishing Company. Lewis, Dave Omnibus Press. McAleer, Neil The Authorized Biography. Contemporary Books.

McCarty, Joyce E. Feb Pixley, Andrew []. BBC Audiobooks. Samuelson, David N. Spring A Median Stage of Adolescence? Beatie, Bruce A. Clarke and the Alien Encounter". Extrapolation 30 1: Buhle, Paul; Dave Wagner A Very Dangerous Citizen: Abraham Lincoln Polonsky and the Hollywood Left.

Candelaria, Matthew Jan The Source of Sorrow in Childhood's End". Posthuman Metamorphosis: Narrative and Systems. Clark, Stephen R. How to Live Forever: Science Fiction and Philosophy. Clareson, Thomas D. Voices for the Future: Essays on Major Science Fiction Writers. Popular Press. Feenberg, Andrew March Science Fiction in the Nuclear Age". Johns Hopkins Magazine. Gordon, Andrew The Cosmic Dancers: Exploring the Physics of Science Fiction.

Hillegas, Mark R. The Future as Nightmare: Wells and the Anti-Utopians. Oxford University Press. Hollow, John []. Against the Night, the Stars: The Science Fiction of Arthur C. Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. Hughes, David Titan Books. Hull, Elizabeth Anne In Milton T. Shaw and Science Fiction. Huntington, John Spring The Economist The Economist Group Rabkin, Eric S. Clarke 2 ed.

Schwam, Stephanie The Making of , A Space Odyssey.

Childhood's End - PDF Free Download

Random House, Inc. Westfahl, Gary Themes, Works, and Wonders 3. Greenwood Publishing Group. Westfahl, Gary; George Edgar Slusser Nursery Realms.

University of Georgia Press. Space Odyssey. Odyssey Two Odyssey Three Courtesy of Jen's mini reviews. I also read it to my son when he was eight. So why did I come back to a book that was originally published in , read it yet again, and feel it necessary to write a review? Also, my limited experience teaching university students impressed upon me the impact that the Internet is having on the minds of our young people.

It starts off with a startling revelation: Earth is not only being visited by extraterrestrials, called Overlords, but they have come to take over the world, prevent our annihilation, and impose restrictions on human activities that will insure not only our survival but also that we prosper.

ET, or the Overlords in this case, is here to help. When one group, the Freedom League, wishes to oppose the Overlords more forcefully, they are soon subdued, non-violently. The one thing the Overlords will not do is show themselves.

As a result, the Overlords agree to let them see them, but not for another fifty years, two generations. As time drags on, humanity loses its edge. We are no longer as creative as we once were, and culturally we have stagnated. And the time finally comes when the Overlords reveal their physical selves, and a strange sight they are, and yet immediately recognizable.

They are the very image of Satan, red skin, horns, and pointed tail, leathery wings. At the mid-point of the novel, we get a true reversal. At a party, guests play a game similar to a Ouija Board. This person then starts making plans to stowaway on the next Overlord spaceship to their home.

The Overlords have subdued the humans up until this point, but now one of them is on the hunt to find out more than the Overlords wish them to know. This is plot point three. His journey there and back will take eighty years, Earth time, but just a few months in relativistic time above the rocket traveling at close to the speed of light. Just a little later, at the three-quarters point in the novel, a strange event occurs.

An Overlord saves one of the human children. For some reason the Overlords believe he is special. And then children all over the world start having strange dreams and developing telekinetic powers.

This is what the Overlords have waited for all this time. At the end of the novel, we learn that what the story has been about all along is the children. The human race is entering a new phase, one that will only manifest in our children.

They are becoming something other than human beings and metamorphosing into something that transcends human existence. And we learn that those who have been known as the Overlords are actually only caretakers of the human race while it undergoes the transformation into something spiritually superior to human beings. The children no longer relate to their parents, and the parents have no knowledge of their children.

As it turns out, the Overlords are a tragic species. They cannot and never will make the transformation to this higher plane. And they take their orders from yet a higher power, the power that then comes for the children of mankind.

The Overlords are a dead-end species from another world and can only witness the process, foster it, but never undergo it themselves. The denouement comes with the man who had hitched a ride on the Overlords spaceship and gone to their home planet. He returns after eighty years, having seen the home of the Overloads and what a magnificent species they are. But he is the only human being left on earth, and he witnesses the end of the human race.

He skips from character to character as his story dictates. He even uses a couple of the Overlords as point-of-view characters. This he does with skill, so it never seems artificial or lacking knowledge of craft. Always professionally executed. Perhaps you can now see why I was so interested in taking another look at this story.

Our children of today are growing up in the presence of the Internet, something no science fiction writer saw coming. And yet, it seems to me that Arthur C. Clarke did, in a sense, see it coming in this story.

Our texting, blogging, FaceBooking neophytes to the human race are a strange species with unusual powers developed by virtue of the Internet. It does appear that they are making a clean break from what the human race has been. View all 4 comments. Mar 17, Zigger rated it did not like it. I always feel so terrible when I read, or attempt to read, Arthur C. But I also feel terrible when I don't.

I like fantasy. I like science fiction. Arthur C. Clark is a genius, a pioneering, farsighted sci-fi icon. I should like reading his books. And so I try every once in a while, in the same spirit that I eat half a banana once or twice a year. I like fruit. Bananas are good for you. But I have yet to finish either a banana or an Arthur C.

Clarke book. It's me. It must be. So I'm giving myself the one star as a reader, not this book. But so help me,every time I get to page nine or so of Athur C. Clarke I feel myself reverting into exactly the same mindset as when my much more intelligent snotty twenty-year-old brother sat me down in front of I just sort of go right into crisis mode and let it all wash over me without trying to string together events, identify characters, or extort meaning from any of it.

Oh look, the cavemen are fighting. That's a neat space ship. Poor Hal. Oh good, the credits. I did exactly the same thing up until page 41 of Childhood's End, which was when I closed it because all I could think of was, predictably, the book's end. I need help. I admit it. Maybe I could read it with one of those things in my ear like at the UN, with somebody smarter than I am explaining what the heck is going on, page by page.

I do like banana bread, however. View all 19 comments. Mar 25, Bradley rated it it was amazing Shelves: Old SF sometimes has a kick to it that nothing modern can quite manage. There's a speed and economy of words, of action progressing so quickly that I feel like I'm on a roller-coaster ride and it's all downhill.

This is what Childhood's End feels like. It's hard not to write about this book without giving away spoilers, so I'll just warn you now and get right down to business. It starts out with damn old tropes and bit of spunky adventure, but it quickly becomes obvious that all that was a lark.

T Old SF sometimes has a kick to it that nothing modern can quite manage. The real story wasn't glamorous in the traditional sense. It was certainly glamorous in a few instances, but it did manage to do was pull off both tragedy and glory.

Or the old definition of Romance, if you so prefer. Who are the overlords who have disrupted and forced humanity to behave? They hid their faces for good reasons. Our race has had an old premonition of its end, and these tragic figures figure heavily. But wait, is this a novel about them, or humanity? Humanity has had its last hurrah. Our childhood is done.

There's no sense of the life we known continuing. It's certainly the end of the novel. There's no hint of anything resembling future conflict, no hook to give readers further meaning or interest beyond a "Hey, look at those pretty lights!

Of course, the point is that when we're ready to put down our toys and pick up the mantle of adulthood, we'll not understand a damn thing from this side of the veil, and that's just fine from a story standpoint, and it definitely has a lot of impact.

It doesn't pull any punches with me. I like that. But then, I'm handed a full-stop. There's no where else for this novel to continue, even in my head. There's no further wondering or amazement. When it's done, it's completely done. Even our tragic overlords sit and pity themselves, never having changed as a people from page one.

They're stuck in the same cycle forever, living out the same story, guarding and watching other's children grow up and leave home, without ever once having a taste of something truly grand.

Of course, that's the point. The fall from heaven, always being cast out, learning that the greatest hell is the one in your own mind, always separate from the state of grace. Yes, they are a tragic race. Fortunately for us, the readers, Clarke doesn't expound. He weaves a simple tale from start to finish and ends it on a full-stop. Am I the only one that wishes that such a story might have been teased into something much greater, and have avoided that dreaded full-stop?

Pdf childhoods end

If SF is in a constantly shifting conversation with itself, including the other writers of the craft and the public that reads it, then this book is an utter conversation-stopper. There's no where else to go unless we change the nature of what is written.

It's a great story. Don't get me wrong. But it's about as subtle as an SS boot on my neck. Still, this is a classic for a very good reason, and it will always be memorable, even if there are a lot of imitators. I think this one is going to remain superior, even if I think some of the old cultural quirks such as referring to blacks as negros really needs to be edited out, and damn "literary integrity.

Childhood's End

It only serves to date the novel and pull it out of an argument that it should be considered one of the "Great SF Masterpieces". But even so, it still deserves to be on that list, even with its faults.

Truly a great re-read. View all 15 comments. Surreal, and epic in scope. Mind blowing stuff. View all 3 comments. Mar 16, Markus rated it really liked it Shelves: He had labored to take man to the stars, and now the stars — aloof, indifferent stars — had come to him. The human race was no longer alone. Clarke might be my favourite. View all 7 comments. I know I'm a little late on reading this it was published in , but as an avid lover of science fiction, in both the literary and cinematic sense, I am so happy that I did choose to pick up this timeless story.

My initial motive for deciding to read Arthur C. Clarke's novel was the fact that in about a month, SyFy I watch almost everything SyFy airs will be premiering a mini-series based on the work bearing the same name, and I subscribe to the read-the-book-before-you-see-the-movie belie I know I'm a little late on reading this it was published in , but as an avid lover of science fiction, in both the literary and cinematic sense, I am so happy that I did choose to pick up this timeless story.

Clarke's novel was the fact that in about a month, SyFy I watch almost everything SyFy airs will be premiering a mini-series based on the work bearing the same name, and I subscribe to the read-the-book-before-you-see-the-movie belief. But I digress; the most straightforward way to construe the sentiment of Childhood's End would be to liken it to an episode of The Twilight Zone, minus the omnipresent voice of Rod Serling guiding the audience toward the actuality of the plot, of course.

Since Clarke is also the author of A Space Odyssey, I am not surprised at his ability of futuristic foresight as much as I am impressed by it. His ability to perceive an impending future of which he could not possibly have had any knowledge is simply stunning. This story is ageless; it is easy to believe that it could have been published alongside current bestsellers, or even 25 years from now, given that by then we as a race are still questioning the existence of intelligent alien life.

The story begins in the midth century and ends about a century later. There is no main character, and this alone exposes Clarke's avant-garde literary style. Divided into 3 parts, the story follows the lives of 3 separate people while being presented in the third-person omniscient narrative.

The parts are seamless, and while they span a century, their cohesion is tangible. The alien visitation trope is not new to literature, not now and not during Clarke's time.

Yet, out of all the science fiction I have watched or read, this story was able to leave an impact incomparable to any other no matter how similar the plot. As humans, we have no reason to question our existence as Earth's most intelligent life-form; it is as it has always been, and in our remembered history there has been no competition.

While our questions about human existence may be limited to how and why, the fact that man rules the Earth is indisputable. Since there is so far no observable evidence to prove the existence of any alien life, we have no discernible reasons to query into the continuation of the reign of man. But what if there was?

Arthur C. Clarke - Childhood's End

How quickly would our galactic perspectives change if alien life was introduced to Earth? Enter the plot of Childhood's End, where an alien race has in fact traversed billions of light-years to visit our precious planet. With a sense of altruism unmatched in any species, the Overlords abruptly end war, hunger, pestilence, and all other forms of suffering man has brought upon itself.

Through economic, political, and social reform, the mysterious Overlords provide the foundation for a united planet. While the human race is thankful for these reformations, the reason for such benevolence is continually masked by our alien shepherds. Why have the Overlords arrived? Where have they come from? Why now? Why us? Childhood's End provides resolutions to all these pressing concerns and more. In shining light on many of the most notorious of mankind's existential questions, ranging from the truth of religion to the intricacies of parapsychology, the Overlords also reveal the purpose of human existence.

The conclusion of Childhood's End calls into question a familiar idiom: I am a fan of science fiction, and I wanted to read Childhood's End after hearing it is supposedly one of the best novels in the sci-fi genre. Maybe my expectations were too high, but I just didn't enjoy it. First off, the characterization is extremely weak. I understand that some science fiction is more plot driven than character driven, but I still think it is important to w I am a fan of science fiction, and I wanted to read Childhood's End after hearing it is supposedly one of the best novels in the sci-fi genre.

I understand that some science fiction is more plot driven than character driven, but I still think it is important to write good characters. None of the characters in this book were all that dynamic or multi-layered.

The human characters were very similar to one another. The same can be said of the aliens the overlords. Prior to reading this novel, I was unaware that Clarke was an atheist. However, his disdain for God and religion in general becomes clear throughout the novel. The overlords are described as having horns and a tail. It's interesting that the race that comes to save the humans from themselves is given the physical attributes of the devil.

After the overlords come to Earth, all religions are eliminated as false by the overlords who are apparently omniscient themselves. Here is a direct quote from the book regarding religion: Beneath the fierce passionless light of truth, faiths that had sustained millions for twice a thousand years vanished like morning dew. Despite the overlords having dismissed all religion as fantasy, they are extremely interested in psychic phenomenon.

At one point during the book, an overlord is sent to a man's home to stay so he can study the myriad of books the man has on the topic of the paranormal. In the same chapter, this man has a party in which he and his guests use a Ouija board. I found the whole scene complete with a woman fainting to be silly and it took away from the seriousness of the rest of the novel. My final complaint is with the book's ending. We learn that humanity's final stage in evolution is for its children to join the overmind.

In joining the overmind a vast cosmic intelligence , the children become essentially mindless zombies. They lose all aspects of individuality and uniqueness. Oh yeah, and the earth is destroyed. I'm not sure how this is supposed to be humanity's triumphant evolution, as it just seems sad and fatalistic to me. While there were some interesting ideas in the book, it was just not an enjoyable reading experience for me.

I didn't relate to any of the characters or care about them for that matter , I didn't agree with the author's dim view on religion and God, I thought the plot progression was slow for the majority of the book, and the ending was anti-climactic and downright depressing. All in all, I would not vote for this book to be considered one of the best science fiction has to offer. I might give Mr. Clarke another try, but this one certainly did not impress me.

View all 8 comments. Oct 15, Scott rated it it was amazing Shelves: Childhood's End is a stone-cold Science Fiction classic. Read it. No seriously, Read it. Don't leave it for decades like I did. Oh, are you still here? If you still need convincing that Childhood's End is worth your time, read on. Clarke's novel is a haunting, thoughtful story that betrays few of its many years it was published in !

Sure, there are a few glimpses of its era- Childhood's End is a stone-cold Science Fiction classic. Sure, there are a few glimpses of its era- some hints of dated gender relations, some tech that isn't as magical as it would have seemed in the 50s - but in the main this is still a relevant, exciting book.

Humanity is on the verge of true space exploration, with both the USSR and USA readying their own space vehicles, when huge alien spacecraft appear without warning over all the major cities of Earth. A voice, transmitted to everyone on Earth and naming itself as 'Karellan', informs the world that the new arrivals are going to supervise human affairs to prevent us from causing our own extinction. Peace descends on Earth.

Cruelty to animals is outlawed. National governments fall, and are replaced with greater cooperation between the many peoples of Earth than ever before. With no money being squandered on militaries the world enters a golden age of prosperity and health, where everyone is safe, no one starves and with advanced automation, no one need even work. It's a paradise, of sorts.

Karellen and his species are soon named The Overlords, and the world settles into its new reality, the lives of the great mass of people massively improved. Creativity, however, suffers. Without struggle and threat, and with the psychological influence of all-powerful aliens watching over humanity, artistic expression falters and stagnates.

No new artistic movements emerge. No new great artists. Science and technological research too suffers, as humanity loses motivation to create technologies that could never match the wonders of the Overlords, to create things the alien watchers clearly discarded centuries or even millennia ago.

All research into spacefaring tech ceases, as does research into anything else that The Overlords' presence has rendered primitive by comparison. Fuelled by fear that humanity is being stifled, and despite the seeming benevolence of the Overlords, anti-alien resistance and lobby groups spring up.

The fact that The Overlords refuse to reveal their appearances, to even hint at what they look like, and rule via decree from their ships only strengthens this resistance. The decades begin to pass, with the great ships hanging over Earth, seemingly content to watch and make small interventions, but their ultimate purpose remains a mystery, a mystery that eats at certain ambitious people, leading one of them - Jan Rodricks - into an audacious and risky plot to find out what the Overlords are doing.

That's the basic plot, but this outline doesn't do it justice. There's a tantalizing sense of mystery in the story Clarke tells, and it tugged me through the narrative like a hare before a greyhound. Who are the Overlords? What are their plans? What do they even look like?

Why are they hiding themselves? These are the questions the characters in the novel obsess over and they are so skillfully handled that I obsessed over them too. So where does this story of mystery go?

Childhood's end

To somewhere unexpected is the simple answer. This is no pot-boiler tale of a doggedly noble human resistance, or even a tale of species-wide uplift, of humanity being given technological gifts and joining the myriad races of some galactic federation a la Star Trek and the like. Instead it's something very different, something both sad and beautiful. I was genuinely surprised at the direction Clarke sent his story, and the thoughtful, poignant ending is one that stands high and tall as a genuine original in Science Fiction.

This is a great book, a landmark of its genre. You really should read it. One of my colleagues, while growing up in Sri Lanka, used to see Arthur C.

End pdf childhoods

Clarke taking his strolls along the beaches near Colombo. I must confess to being envious of my friend for having been in the presence of one of the greats of SF. Oct 26, Manny rated it really liked it Shelves: I see that a lot of my GR friends have read this fine book.

I just wondered if any of you have had the thought that's occurred to me several times over the last two or three years. One of the things I find most confusing about the current state of the world is that you can view it in two diametrically opposed ways. On the one hand, there's the terrifying stuff you see most days in the paper.

Not only are we using up our irreplaceable natural resources, we're doing it in a way that's well on track I see that a lot of my GR friends have read this fine book. Not only are we using up our irreplaceable natural resources, we're doing it in a way that's well on track to destroy most of our planet's ability to sustain life.

People keep saying that we better do something about it, and no one does. The Western world spends trillions of dollars sorting out the largely artificial banking crisis, but when it comes to finding a few tens of billions of dollars to do something about climate change, it's mostly excuses. At least, so far. So that's one side of the story. On the other side, we have people like Ray Kurzweil, who point out that, over the last fifty thousand years or so, technology has moved forward at an exponentially increasing rate.

Each advance takes half the time of the preceding one. It follows that we are now close to the Singularity, when machines will become smarter than people, and it is no longer possible for us to guess what will happen next.

I think that Kurzweil's concrete figures are wrong, but I am much less certain that I disagree with his basic argument. The story so far in Artificial Intelligence has frequently been that people make optimistic predictions and get laughed at, but do in fact deliver in the end. The clearest example of this pattern is computer chess. As recently as , I remember all sorts of very clever people, both computer scientists and chess players, explaining why machines would never even reach Grandmaster standard.

It's now clear that they are stronger than any human players.

But, when I think of Childhood's End , I wonder: Maybe we're destroying the Earth, but it doesn't matter any more than it does at the end of this book; the next stage of evolution, which is almost here, will have completely different priorities.

Once the tree has grown, who cares about the seed it sprouted from? If you're one of the people currently negotiating in Copenhagen, please don't pay any attention to me. I'm just free-associating. View all 34 comments. Ne znam da li je ijedna knjiga ostavila ovakav utisak na mene. Aug 15, Stephen rated it it was amazing Shelves: One of Arthur C. Clarke's best novels and one of my personal favorites. This novel is one of the best ever written concerning the evolution of man into a higher order of being.

Brilliantly conceived and poignantly executed, this is classic SF at its best. Nov 11, Luffy rated it really liked it. Childhood's End proved to be a very readable book. I could assimilate the simply written ideas of the author. Through humanity's last creative gasp, then its last existential one, we see how the image of the Overlords shifts from Vassal to serf. So the reason for the high score is that despite the rehashing of themes, this book still can provide fun to the purist, the hardened, the uninitiated, and the indifferent, the latter category to which I thought I belonged.

I can totally, however unders Childhood's End proved to be a very readable book. I can totally, however understand the naysayers. Parts of the book are dated or slightly clunky and they show the limitations of Clarke. But I do recommend it, as it's more rewarding than Rendezvous With Rama. Clarke fans of course , big-idea SF fans. This is another case of not knowing whether to give it two stars or three.

The girls went off in one direction to discuss Mrs. Boyce; the men went in another and did exactly the same thing, though from a different viewpoint. The planets you may one day possess.

But the stars are not for man. They are the servants of the Overmind, an intelligence they only dimly understand or perceive, but which directs their actions, and which has determined that humans are ready to join it. In what, I suppose, is meant to be tragically ironic, the Overlords themselves are unable to transcend and can only watch as their charges become something greater. The cost, however, is that humanity as such has reached the end of its existence; the entity that the Overmind has fostered is no more human than the australopithecines that preceded our species.

Once this new species is ready to join the Overmind, Earth will be consumed in the process: For a little while the gravitational waves crossed and re-crossed the solar system…. There was nothing left of Earth: They had leeched away the last atoms of its substance.

It had nourished them, through the fierce moments of their inconceivable metamorphosis, as the food stored in a grain of wheat feeds the infant plant while it climbs towards the sun. The stars may not be for Man but we are a stage on the road that leads to them. I happen to agree with Clarke that evolution is not a progressive process, and that humans are accidents of many improbable mutations.

Turning back the clock 65 million years and letting it run again will not result in us. The discomfort my brain suffers when I read Clarke comes from a philosophical difference. Or just the planets, for that matter? For 60, years — give or take a few millennia — humans existed in complex, vibrant cultures and spread to nearly every corner of the globe without doing too much permanent damage to the planet.

We create ideals and set and strive for particular goals but each generation must reassess them in light of its own experience. I realize that. But we should try our best to enlarge our hold on it as much as possible. Well, think of those workers you know personally, only of them. It is my hope that humanity will go it its rest in peace, knowing that it has not lived in vain. For what you will have brought into the world may be utterly alien, it may share none of your desires or hopes, it may look upon your greatest achievements as childish toys — yet it is something wonderful, and you will have created it.

They freely admit they have only a limited comprehension of the Overmind and its objectives. And what they do comprehend suggests an entity bent on eliminating any rival: I cannot explain the full nature of the threat you represented. It would not have been a threat to us, and therefore we do not comprehend it. Let us say that you might have become a telepathic cancer, a malignant mentality which in its inevitable dissolution would have poisoned other and greater minds.

Assimilate or be destroyed. Childhood's End has been sitting on my bookcase for quite a while. I made a promise to my friend Jason: I don't doubt that these novels were fantastic at the time they were written. It's hard to stand up to time i Childhood's End has been sitting on my bookcase for quite a while.

It's hard to stand up to time in the scifi genre when ideas move fast and what was once fantastic has become commonplace. It kept my interest all the way through; and even almost 60 years after publication the ideas presented were unique and I had no idea what would happen next.

Equally important is I enjoyed Clarke's style of writing, moreso than any thing else I've read by him. This was a good choice, Jason, and I thank you for the recommendation. Now it's my turn to tell scifi fans if they haven't read this: It'll be well worth your time. Please change the title 2 11 Apr 10, Spoilers May Be Present!