Pebble in the Sky

Isaac Asimov
Pebble in the Sky Cover

Pebble in the Sky


Pebble in the Sky was Asimov's first novel, published in 1950, and is one of the few Asimov novels I actually bought. My mother owns most of the ones I've read, and J brought copies of the Foundation ones that I'll be getting to next into the house so I've never actually got round to buying many.

Having just read the short story version it grew out of I think this is a much better telling of that story, but it'll still never be a favourite. There's still no women, really, although Pola Shekt gets a bit more on-screen time however she's still very much "the love interest".

The plot is much the same as the short story. Josef Schwartz, one of our two main characters, is transported from 1949 to the far far future. There he suffers culture shock & gets caught up in the politics & conspiracy of the time. Earth is now radioactive and can only barely support the population which means when you get to the age of 60 you get euthanised. So much time has passed since the 20th Century that no-one knows that Earth was the original planet that mankind came from, and the Galactic Empire treats Earth & Earth people as an insignificant cultural backwater. The Earth government smarts under this, and there are plans afoot to Do Something About This (these are the antagonists). Our other protagonist is a brilliant young Galactic archaeologist, Bel Arvardan, with theories about the origins of humanity - and on his visit to Earth he gets caught up in the political situation along with Schwartz.

Click the link below to read my full review.