… and it rules! I have a real soft spot for far future sci-fi books that were written in the 40s and 50s. It seems like the author’s really have to dig deep into their imagination to predict what life is going to be like 50+ years away. In the case of City those predictions are way out there, but it it makes for great reading. At times City seems to be more fantasy or fairy tale than science fiction, but at other times it has the weight of legend or epic poem or something. Also, there is a real cynicism about humanity that seems to come through. I enjoy that. I’m not certain you could call City post-apocalyptic, but I’m going to allow it. I mean, it describes an earth that is void of humanity so I think I’m justified here.
Anyway, if you can get your hands on it, I highly recommend it. It won the Hugo after all. That seems like quite a feat when you consider that it was originally written as a series for the pulp magazine Astounding Science Fiction. I honestly don’t know much more about Clifford D. Simak, but I’m going to dig around. City is so unique that there must be other great books written by him.
Ha! I just did a quick check and I’ve already read Way Station by him. Guess what? It’s also won the Hugo. That does it. He’s been elevated to Vernor Vinge status in my book. I’m going to have to track down all of his stuff now. If you’ve read any other Simak books that I should start with, please let me know.