Paperback ✓ City PDF Ú

Paperback ✓ City PDF Ú

City [Ebook] ➠ City By Clifford D. Simak – Centrumpowypadkowe.co.uk Градовете на планетата са превърнати в пустиняАвтоматизацията е завладяла всяка част от човешкия живот Хора Градовете на планетата са превърнати в пустиняАвтоматизацията е завладяла всяка част от човешкия живот Хората са станали излишни и безполезни – един след друг те се отказват от мисловна дейностРОБОТИТЕ правят космически кораби – те се стремят към звездитеИ КУЧЕТАТА завладяват ЗемятаКлифърд Саймък е един от най добрите майстори на научна фантастика „Градът“ е негова класическа творба.


About the Author: Clifford D. Simak

He was honored by fans with three Hugo awards and by colleagues with one Nebula award and was named the third Grand Master by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America SFWA in WikipediaSee.



10 thoughts on “City

  1. Bill Kerwin Bill Kerwin says:

    Remember when you—the naïve philosopher—struck by the similarities of molecule and solar system imagined your body to be composed of billions of nano planets and stars? I do I was twelve years old at the time working at my parent's grocery and I was suddenly forced to lean upon my push broom to keep from falling headlong in a dizzy marvel of surprise Reading City 1952 is like that Although now it may look naïve simplistic perhaps even shallow but at the time it seemed so imaginatively brave so wide in scope that it made you dizzy to contemplate itSimak's book is certainly ambitious Originally a series of eight short stories published from '44 tp '51 it stretches than ten thousand years in the future from the days when men abandoned the large industrial cities in fear of the atomic bomb through the growing isolation and disappearance the human species unable to come to grips with its own violence or feel comfortable in its own skin to the new order established on earth by the talking dogs and their robot helpers who now face the threat of a rising insect civilizationUnfortunately City though broad in scope lacks depth The writing style is merely serviceable and the characters are often thin their motivations uncomplicated Worse the world itself lacks credibility evolving according to a child like version of lamarckian inheritance for example some genius sets a glass dome over an anthill so the little dudes won't have to hibernate and soon they are building little factories and pushing things around in tiny carts Such deficiences however are almost counterbalanced by the ingenious self referential framework of the novel Simak connects his eight stories with a series of introductory scholarly notes that summarize the opinions of Doggish critics through the centuries with names like Rover Tighe and Towser who analyze the significance of these fabulous ancient folktales and conjecture that humankind itself may be nothing but a canine mythWhich is “wild” man it could “blow your top” make you “flip your lid”—as my twelve year old self might say And if the twelve year old philosopher lives in you—as he still lives in me—you may find something to enjoy in Simak's City


  2. Kevin Kuhn Kevin Kuhn says:

    This is a challenging review as I'm surprised I didn’t enjoy the book as much as I thought I would Oh I still enjoyed it and certainly appreciated it But it didn’t capture me as tightly as Way Station I haven’t forgotten that it was written in the 1940’s and I think readers must consider that fact I’m still excited to read Simak and this book works on many levels but I failed to completely lose myself in it as I do with my favorite reads However Simak as an author continues to grow on me He’s genuinely midwestern and writes calm thoughtful science fiction He has a strong connection to nature and it shows in his prose He’s a storyteller and I’d love to be able to share a whisky with him on his front porch while he spins a yarn I’ve heard him referred to as naïve and even preachy and I think that’s at least partly true But if an author asks uestions than provides answers I’m ok with some overt themes If you’re not trying to express yourself in your writing what’s it for? Anyway on one level this is an expansive story that covers dramatic social change robots human mutants animal uplift planetary expansion and even parallel dimensions It’s a great deal to cover in a roughly 200 page book Which incidentally is really a series of eight short stories and novellas with overarching notes that provide some context and tie the stories together If your looking for hard sci fi look elsewhere Much of the technology is never explained and many parts of the story are disjointed and incomplete This is I believe intentional as the books is represented as fragmented historical archives that might in fact be fables or allegories told by generations of sentient dogsA second layer is the examination of family and human’s focus on home He uestions the necessity of cities and what would be both lost and gained if they were abandoned Simak envisions warm fires in the hearth a glass of fine whiskey in a place that you can call home a place with deep roots and a strong connection to a family linage Much of the book is melancholy and subdued Characters including robots often look back to the past with nostalgiaPart of the issue with this book is that to cover vast spans of time thousands and thousands of years much of the story rides above the characters and the action We do get pulled into specific characters and events but rarely long enough to become invested On another level the framework of the story exists to allow Simak to explore his ideas around human nature and human destiny While most sci fi authors explore population explosions or overcrowding Simak examines the opposite a continuous decline of mankind’s numbers on the Earth Along with the dwindling population robots and other advancement eliminate the need for labor This allows Simak to uestion humanities ability to persist without the struggle of toil and conuest to provide drive and motivation I’m sure this was an advanced novel for its time I’m not claiming Simak established concepts such as robotics or mutants or animal uplift or radical social change over thousands of years but certainly those areas were still relatively unexplored ground in the 1940’s A creative series of campfire stories told over generations by sentient dogs about the decline of humanity Four stars for this sprawling in scope yet strangely brief seuence of fables that serve to examine human nature and our potential destiny


  3. mark monday mark monday says:

    gosh i loved this oneCity is a collection of eight connected stories depicting the future and end of mankind and the rise of dogs just as i always suspected dogs will eventually inherit the earth good dogsSimak is a humanist but a clear eyed one an author who doesn't let much sentiment cloud his storytelling man fails and fails again but his strivings are viewed with both careful distance and genuine affection this is not one of those scifi novels about man being the architect of his own doom well i suppose it sort of is but minus the doom part there is a kind of transcendence achieved or at least a movement by mankind into a state that is clearly glorious and exuberant than their earthly forms they reach for the stars ding ding ding cliche time arrives but don't uite get there eh no matter how does the song go? you can't always get what you want but if you try sometimes you get what you need man gets what he needs when dogs inherit the earth well perhaps not our earth man is basically a mythical creature the stories in City are tales told and studied by the dog race a millenia in the futurethe novel is subtle nuanced tender; even tempered and even handed the prose is clean and straightforward and rather literary as well the narrative is anything but straightforward although the stories move seuentially in time people and places and things and ideas are mentioned developed dropped and yet always return nothing of value is left abandoned this is not a novel that is by any means thuddingly obvious i was consistently surprised at the twists and turns that each story took and how the story of our future history is developed and don't expect hard science or any realistic science in general when reading this expect yearning and melancholy and kindness and a sweet sort of poetry and an infinite largneness of spirit it is a classic novel for many good reasons; i was completely enthralled the kind of novel where after i finished all i wanted to do was hug the author for creating itof particular interest to me was the depiction of a society based on mechanistic ideas compared to that of a society based around i suppose the word would be psychic ideas that still doesn't feel like the right word some kind of word that includes psychic but also spiritual and emotional and mental ish ah well words fail him a typical human failingthis would be a 5 star book for me but sad to say i did find the first story to be rather weak the second story was interesting but i wasn't uite sold the third story and beyond perfectionbut hey what is it all about? wellants evolving into mysterious threats and building strange structures flights into alternate dimensions dimensions that dogs can see threats that exist in those dimensions and sometimes cross over a robot guardian named Jenkins guardian to the future race of dogs intelligent animals a brotherhood of animals the last city of Geneva fallen silent and its denizens sleeping an endless sleep the race of men transported elsewhere the race of men now a handful of bow and arrow naturals psychic robots wild robots mutant humans living in castles and crossing the universe through strange doorways the family known as Webster forever moving mankind forward or not a trap for humans built by mutants a trap based around empathy a terrible and remorseless mutant named Joe Jupiter as a gateway to transcendence the ability to change form and adapt to Jupiter Nathaniel the first genetically enhanced dog census taking on a pastoral world agoraphobia Martian philosophers a Martian plague humanity moves first to the countryside and then from the earth itself the death of citiesand now i must beg your indulgenceview spoiler hide spoiler


  4. Apatt Apatt says:

    “Thus far Man has come alone One thinking intelligent race all by itself Think of how much farther how much faster it might have gone had there been two races two thinking intelligent races working together For you see they would not think alike They'd check their thoughts against one another What one couldn't think of the other could The old story of two heads”Ah that Clifford D Simak what a gent He is one of the most optimistic compassionate and humanistic sci fi authors ever His lesser known book All Flesh is Grass is the first science fiction novel I ever read I took to the genre like a duck to water and never looked back since So I feel like I owe him— than any other SF authors—a debt of thanks His works are sometimes described as “pastoral science fiction” they usually have a rural setting and extol the virtues of the countryside life There is also an avuncular feel to his prose style that is uite comforting and relaxing to read City is one of his best known books the winner of the International Fantasy Award for 1952 and a part of the SF Masterworks series In spite of the title the book is not about a particular city or of cities in general It is a fix up novel comprising nine stories with an interstitial introduction by a dog stop laughing back there for each of the first eight the ninth story was published than twenty years after the others and is introduced by the author City in spite of its modest page count of around 224 pages is epic in scope The first half of the book depicts the slow decline of human civilization as atomic powered personal air transport hydroponics and space colonization do away with poverty hunger and the need for people to live in cities Later on most of humanity migrate to live in Jupiter where they can live in paradise at the cost of losing their humanity through extreme physical modification The few humans remaining on Earth are catered for by robots and live a meaningless life of plenty A scientist named Bruce Webster surgically modifies dogs to give them sapient intelligence speech and literacy and gives rise to humanity’s successor not usurper From then on the book shifts its focus to the rise of the dog’s civilization with help and guidance from a robot called Jenkins and robots in general that function as the dogs’ hands for tasks which reuire building Towards the end of the book humans become mythical creatures most dogs no longer believe in don’t worry this is not a spoiler the introduction to the very first story—written by a dog—already mentions thisIn spite of the decline and fall of humanity City is not a dystopian sci fi mankind fades away somewhat happily in a post scarcity civilization eventually most of them finding a happier state of being and leaving their humanity behind Simak has a rare ability to make his stories compelling without including action scenes as such The pacing and tone of his narrative tend to be contemplative but the philosophical uestions he raises are often fascinating and than make up for the absence of edge of the seat thrills Considering it is a fix up novel—where the first eight stories were originally published between 1944 and 1951 and the ninth in 1973—it is surprising cohesive as a novel The robot Jenkins practically a protagonist appears in most of the stories and the shadow of the Webster family looms over all of them even after the family members are long gone The interconnected stories are all very good individually but together they form a wonderful narrative with an epic story arc that spans thousands of yearsSimak was never a hard science fiction writer uite the opposite even The science behind his fiction is mostly rather vague and of the “handwavium” variety For examples some robots begin to develop psychic abilities how? The surgical modifications Webster made to the dogs breed through to successive generations of dogs How? Ah nevermind Perhaps this is why he is not as revered as the likes of Asimov Clarke Heinlein from the same era The robots in this book are practically indistinguishable from humans in term of personality and behavior except they are all very nice and kind While there is no actual tragedy in this book the narrative does develop an air of melancholic wistfulness towards the end where the themes of abandonment and loneliness become dominant The dogs and the robots are utterly charming and the Webster family members are sympathetic and believable There are no villains as such except some unsympathetic mutants and the inscrutable ants I had a great—if slightly wistful—time reading City and I thoroughly recommend it Yes it is very old but it’s like fine wineNotes• There are many variants of City book covers This one best represents the book I think This one also comes close This is the edition I actually bought decades ago • If I can’t convince you to read City perhaps this great article at Torcom can• Simak’s Way Station is also an unmissable classicuotes “Aside from the concept of the city another concept which the reader will find entirely at odds with his way of life and which may violate his very thinking is the idea of war and of killing Killing is a process usually involving violence by which one living thing ends the life of another living thing War it would appear was mass killing carried out on a scale which is inconceivable”The city is an anachronism It has outlived its usefulness Hydroponics and the helicopter spelled its downfall”“If Man had taken a different path might he not in time to come have been as great as Dog?”


  5. Ivan Ivan says:

    So far the strongest candidate for the best book I read this year


  6. Althea Ann Althea Ann says:

    'City' is a novel which is actually made up of nine stories originally published separately but later strung together with a series of 'notes' explaining that these stories are part of the mythological heritage of the civilisation of Dogs who believe that the existence of Man is most probably only a legend· City · May 1944 Occasionally you read an old science fiction story and are just blown away by the remarkable prescience of the author and his or her ability to predict future eventsWell in this case Simak sure got it wrongAccording to the United Nations Today 54 per cent of the world’s population lives in urban areas a proportion that is expected to increase to 66 per cent by 2050 Projections show that urbanization combined with the overall growth of the world’s population could add another 25 billion people to urban populations by 2050 However in Simak's 1980's the opposite has happened With the energy crisis utterly solved by atomics personal planes becoming ubiuitous and hydroponic advances eliminating the need for farmland the concept of the city has died Most people have gotten the hell out of Dodge and commute to their jobs from distant expansive estates Without cities to serve as targets for bombs world peace has finally arrivedHowever as with any radical social shift there are a few kinks to be worked out and some dissatisfaction to be dealt with perhaps in an uncomfortably totalitarian way· Huddling Place · Jul 1944 Two hundred years after the events of the previous story the descendants of the characters in 'City' are still living on their country estate similarly to most of humanity Martian civilization has been discovered and friendly relations are in effect However an unfortunate side effect of humanity's new lifestyle is just emerging served by robots and with access to what seems just like the Internet people don't need to physically 'go' anywhere and have developed extreme agoraphobic tendencies· Census · Sep 1944 This third segment definitely works better in the context of the whole than as a standalone A census taker comes out to the old estate Another couple of generations have passed The government is interested in any anomalous events and the census taker indeed finds them here A scientific tinkerer has created talking dogs; and a mysterious mountain man who doesn't seem to age is reputed to show up fix things and disappear 'without waiting for thanks' · Desertion · Nov 1944 I believe I read this one before years ago It's by far my favorite Simak short that I've read so farOn Jupiter an experimental program is in place to transpose men into the bodies of Jovian native fauna in order to allow people to go out into the hostile environment The procedure seems to work perfectly but something is going wrong So far the first four test subjects have gone out into the wilds of Jupiter and have not returnedThe head of the program may have no moral option but to change tack· Paradise · Jun 1946 We're now a thousand years from the time of the first storyThis one ties in elements of the previous stories mutants without a social instinct the promise of an unfinished Martian philosophy which may actually have been completed by said mutants robots and intelligent dogs But the main focus is on the possibility of a Paradise on Jupiter the attainment of which might involve giving up something intrinsic to the human identity· Hobbies · Nov 1946 The dogs have begun to rise forming their own society The vast majority of human have opted for what today we'd call the singularity joining the transcended on Jupiter Only a few thousand humans remain on Earth and of those many have opted for a virtual reality of dreams not planning to come out of their hibernations for hundreds of years The few left awake while away their time pursuing non essential hobbiesI thought this segment was a bit over long it dragged in parts But many of the ideas it contains feel very ahead of their time· Aesop · Dec 1947 Again this piece works in the context of the novel but wouldn't be that strong on its own The dogs now ascendant on Earth have established a society of peace and non violence 'raising up' all the other animals to intelligence is a world where the lion does indeed lie down with the lamb However there are cracks in this perfect facade and undercurrents of the animal nature of these creaturesMeanwhile with the elimination of the predatorprey relationships overpopulation is becoming a serious issue The answer may lie in the recent discovery of parallel worlds· The Simple Way The Trouble with Ants · Jan 1951 The subtitle says it all Harking back to a by the by bit mentioned in one of the early stories the dogs still the dominant species on Earth have noticed a disturbing phenomenon the ant civilization long ago 'uplifted' to steal David Brin's term casually by a tinkering mutant is now expanding rapidly Are the ants whose thought processes are opaue planning on taking over the planet? The fate of the Earth may come down to a moral choiceInteresting that choice is once again in the hands of a robot It's a recurring but unexamined trope in this cycle that a lot of the 'hinge points' rest on robots one robot to be precise· Epilog · 1973Written over 20 years later this story was not originally included in 'City' It also lacks the entertaining fictional 'notes' that precede the other stories instead having a serious 'note'Here yet another civilization has fallen and it's time for Jenkins the robot who's been the constant throughout all these stories to decide whether it's time to close up shopIt's very similar in fee to Simak's 'All the Traps of Earth' I thoughtMany thanks to NetGalley and Open Road Media for the opportunity to read this book As always my opinions are solely my own


  7. Sarah Sarah says:

    This slim white hardcover from the Science Fiction Book Club has caught my eye numerous times over the years nestled between its bigger shelfmates in my family's science fiction collection I had a vague knowledge that it was narrated by dogs and a vague knowledge that this was a fix up novel a group of short stories tied together with an overarching structure for publication purposes I'm glad I didn't go into it with any further preconceptions Simak did an excellent job of linking the stories; I thought the conceit of the story notes added great depth to the ideas put forth in the stories The book consists of eight stories and a framework of notes that precede each story I'd like to call them anthropological field notes but I think the accurate term might be caninological since they are written by an advanced race of dogs These are the stories the Dogs tell when the fires burn high and the wind is from the north says one of the early notes The stories the dogs examine span twelve thousand years starting in a near future with dates now past Some of the stories are put forth as apocryphal some as fables some as containing a germ of truth They discusses the nature of time and the nature of the bond between dogs and people and the nature of dogs and the instincts that govern both A human family by the name of Webster is present in almost all of the tales The Webster family robot Jenkins serves as the human proxy when no human is available and as a common thread woven through the lengthy timeline Jenkins is a surprisingly rich character with fascinating motives I had never read Simak before and didn't expect the beauty of the language or the depth of the ideas he explores Though this is a story of dog it is also a story of mutants and robots and ants and men and websters and Websters and cities and aliens and cobblies all of which cycle in and out of the stories I loved the way various members of that cast of characters appeared and reappeared New situations were sketched with a deft hand bringing the reader up to date uickly despite jumps of thousands of years If I have any complaint it is the absolute lack of female characters I don't think a single female dog is named in the entire book and there are only a couple of human women dismissed uickly I can justify it somewhat by making a connection to fables and fireside stories and suggesting that each Wolf and Bear and Suirrel is meant to stand for something larger Still it speaks to the uality of the stories and the concepts and the prose that I was mostly able to ignore the rather glaring omission of half of the population I would probably name this as my new favorite novel in stories


  8. Bradley Bradley says:

    I've heard about this novel series of short stories that are related closely for years always referred to in terms of deep respect and honor and now that I've finished reading it I can add my ownIt was very clever to throw the viewpoint in from robots and dogs and see the lost civilization of man from their viewpoints but I found it interesting to see the complete eradication of so much of Earth's life seen from Jenkin's point of view Perhaps I'm just a cynical bastard and I love to see a great downfall but the reasoning behind the downfall was doggone great I found myself feeling ok all around with the eventuality of everything that happened I might even say this was a feel good book and full of optimism Seriously it was a novel full of contradictions and I was delighted to no end


  9. Stephen Stephen says:

    40 to 45 stars I have not read all of Clifford Simak's novels my bad but I have enjoyed every one that I have read so far and this book is no exception The novel is actually a fix up series of connected short stories that range from the superb ie 50 to 60 stars the Huddling Place and Desertion to the very good Aesops ie 30 to 40 stars All of the stories deal with the decline of the human cities and the results on mankind over a vast period of time The version I read listened to actually as it was the audiobook from audiblecom also included the ninth story in the City series called Epilog which was written over 20 years after the others I did not like this story as much as the others but it was still an okay coda Overall Highly recommended Winner International Fantasy Award 91952


  10. Hákon Gunnarsson Hákon Gunnarsson says:

    City by Clifford D Simak is a fix up or in other words a group of short stories that are connected to form a novel City was originally made up of eight short stories but Simak wrote one story years after the original publication a story called Epilogue and this story has often been included in later editions It's the story of how men lost the Earth how dogs and robots took over from man and how that turned outAfter reading the first short story in City I almost gave up on it That story has not aged well in my view but I had heard good things about it so I stuck it out through the next story and that one was better Every story after the first one are pretty good The fourth one is in fact one of the beautiful science fiction short story I have read I like it so well that I might actually read this book again just for that storyFix ups don't always make good novels it City works as a novel Simak has connected the stories by mini essay about how dog scholars have interpreted each story With that use Simak has managed to connected them well enough for this to feel like a novel This story spans thousand of years but it does work well City is an apocalyptic story in a way but it's a very unusual entry into that genre It's not just that we watch Earth go through than one such event but it is also the reasons for the apocalypse that is unusual The apocalypse that mankind goes through seems to have a certain relevance today which I thought interesting It's a sad story and one that in parts hasn't aged terribly well Stuff like the almost complete absence of women is one of the aspects that makes it dated than it could have been Despite that and despite that beginning I like it It is an interesting science fiction novel


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