The time: years after man’s first landing on the Moon. There are permanent populations established on the Moon, Venus, and Mars. Outer space inhabitants . Earthlight [Arthur C. Clarke, Brian Holsopple] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. The time: years after man’s first landing on the Moon. Editorial Reviews. From the Publisher. 6 1-hour cassettes. About the Author. Arthur C. Clarke was considered to be the greatest science fiction writer of all time.

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The book itself is only about pages.

Arthur C. Clarke Reading Challenge 2013 – October: Earthlight

The chapters are short and yet the plot itself, simply told, I found greatly affecting. The book begins years in the future. There has been no war for two centuries. Mankind has expanded the frontier and have now developed beyond the globe, with ckarke settlements on the Moon, Mars, a swampy Venus and cold Jupiter. These planets are collectively known as the Federation.

Earthlight begins by telling of the arrival on the Moon of seemingly-innocuous Bertram Sadler. Bert is an accountant, officially sent to the Moon to check budget spending by the astronomers in Plato Crater. This is earthliggt to a background of both scientific discovery and rising political tension.

Earthlight by Arthur C. Clarke – SFFWorld

The astronomers are busy observing and recording a rare event, a supernova appearing in the Draco constellation. At the same time, for the most in many years, relationships between Earth and the Federation are quite strained. The breakaway planets resent their dependence on Earth for vital heavy metal resources, whilst the Earth squanders what it has, begrudging the Federation leaching away what it has. It is a war story and an espionage tale, both popular at the time of publication, but one which projects the ideas of conflict and technological superiority years into the future.


There even appears to be an element of colonial or imperialistic guilt as the oppressed pioneers attempt to break free from their home planet oppressors. It is perhaps this that makes the book less known than others in his bibliography. Clarke seems to relish in pointing out how different a real space battle would be, should they happen.

Earthlight – Wikipedia

They are invisible and with no sound. Things are underplayed rather than blown up in Technicolor. It is quite refreshing to read.

Perhaps it is because all the actions taken do not kill thousands, and that often the activities are done through diplomacy and with a minimum cost in lives that gives this aspect of the tale a rather elegiac tone. All battles are reluctant and clwrke is not celebrated but mourned. The main battle at the end of the book is actually surprisingly inconclusive and although all becomes well in the end, it is not the type of exciting event that readers normally expect. In the same way the actions of Sadler are rather clzrke, though important to the novel.


In the end, reason seems earthlignt win and the future is secured through cooperation and science. It is a neat ending if a little underwhelming, which seems to encapsulate the novel.

Earthlight is a good solid read and one which reflects the interests and ideas of its author. Though it is short, it is more memorable than many seem to suggest and, although it is dwarfed by other Clarke successes, it seems to summarise a certain mood of its time, and one which is light years away from its pulp predecessors.

Science Fiction is clearly growing up and Earthlight reflects that.

Odyssey of a Visionaryit barely gets a mention. Thank you for the review!

By chance I just finished this book a few days before your review appeared. Hopefully then, you found my review accurate and appropriate.


Mark Yon June 17, 2 Comments. The result is conflict…. You might also like: Mark Davis June 17, at 4: Mark Yon June 19, at 3: