Masterful is the word that describes The Robots of Dawn. That may seem overblown for what amounts to a whodunit in space, but it was a word that sprang to mind when I finished this book. I could not put it down, yet it’s page-turner quality did not leap out. Nor did the descriptions that fleshed out two very different worlds and widely varying characters. Nor did the deeply emotional quality drip with sentiment. Nor was its sexuality exploitative. In all things this book is subtly compelling.
Further, the tale explores the extremes of human tendencies, pointing out our flaws on levels personal to political to cultural. Yet it also highlights the gem-like quality hidden beneath the rough surface of our species.
In the end, Isaac Asimov offers hope for our future―a hope based not in technology but in the basic human capacity to push past fears and other boundaries and to endure and grow despite ourselves.
Have you found a tale that inspired you to explore your own boundaries?