Top critical review
Good Enough, But Past It's Time
Reviewed in the United States on November 12, 2004
With the (at the time) upcoming "I, Robot" film starring Will Smith about to hit theaters, I decided to re-read this book from my high school years and brush up on all the fun I had the first time I read it. I remember enjoying it a lot back then, and I soon found out that my memories do not resonate with today's version of reading reality. The book was ok, little more. I suppose as I get older I get more critical. Understandable, even if it is a little disappointing. Today, I find the dialog extremely trite, with absurd logic that Asimov abuses to attain the ends of the story, often times not remaining consistent from one story to the next.
The book is a collection of short stories, an expanded version of I, Robot. I also believe this may include every short story ever written by Asimov concerning robots. While entertaining enough, I think most people will be bored with it's length. Of course, you need to take the date of publication into account. Even so, some things don't hold up that well over time.
Some of the stories are good, some are...well, not so good. Asimov was a scientist who wrote, there's no mistaking that. His first love was science, not the intermingling of people in the context of real life. Some of the dialogs border in inanity, while some are just plain sophomoric, a testament to my enjoying this while in high school, I suppose.
In all, it's enjoyable enough. The stories are easy enough to read and mostly entertaining. None is so long that you feel a need to put it down and finish the story later, though some do come close to stretching your patience. For the most part, they are all single-sitting reads.
While not the greatest book ever written, it's worth checking out for a historical perspective, and mostly enjoyable at that.