Foundation’s Edge

ISBN: 0246120126
ISBN 13: 9780246120120
By: Isaac Asimov

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About this book

At last, the costly and bitter war between the two Foundations had come to an end. The scientists of the First Foundation had proved victorious; and now they return to Hari Seldon's long-established plan to build a new Empire on the ruins of the old. But rumors persist that the Second Foundation is not destroyed after all & that its still-defiant survivors are preparing their revenge. Now two exiled citizens of the Foundation, a renegade Councilman and a doddering historian, set out in search of the mythical planet Earth...and proof that the Second Foundation still exists.Meanwhile someone or something outside of both Foundations seems to be orchestrating events to suit its own ominous purpose. Soon representatives of both the First and Second Foundations will find themselves racing toward a mysterious world called Gaia and a final, shocking destiny at the very end of the universe!

Reader's Thoughts


** spoiler alert ** In his fourth installment in the Foundation Series Asimov blunders and completely drops the ball. While the first three novels did a marvelous job of telling the story of The Seldon Plan (The True Main Character of the Foundation Series), Asimov decides to toss what was a very good plot aside in favor of connecting the Foundation Series to the Empire and Robot series. I was flabbergasted as a dues ex machine arrives to serve only one purpose (make everything fit together). Not only was the sudden twist horrible, it was a giant hole unto itself. The intervention of Gaia would never have been needed if they hadn't interfered in the foundation's existence. Supposedly Gaia calls together the Mayor, the Speaker, Trevise together because without intervention the First Foundation would have gone on conquest and subjugated the Second Foundation or the Second Foundation would have focused on Physical strength and taken a more forceful hand with the First Foundation. None of that would have happened if Gaia had stayed out of the whole event! Think about it: The Mayor wouldn't even have thought to look at Seyshell if Gaia hadn't have orchestrated events to have Trevise go there, and the Second Foundation wouldn't even have had to the inclination to deal with the new physical power of the Foundation if the Gaian's hadn't have, again, revealed themselves to the Second Foundation by interfering with a corrected Seldon Plan. If anything, the Gaian's should have destroyed the mentalic shields of the First Foundation as an apology for destroying the whole Seldon Plan by shrugging of responsibility for The Mule. Terrible. This book was a complete disappointment.


This is probably the best-written Foundation novel, with long, intricate plot threads and better-than-average characters (though that's not saying much.) Which made me all the more upset when the climax of the book ditched the themes - even the purpose - of the Foundation, in favor of an oddly New-Age ending (matched by a character choice I furiously disagree with).


** spoiler alert ** This was, like its predecessors, an enjoyable story. I enjoyed the premise for it, the pacing, and even the characterization is very much improved over the earlier Foundation novels (however little that may be saying).But I cannot review this book without spoiling it. So read no further if that bothers you.The real shortcoming is that Asimov abandons (at the very end) the first two foundations to have yet a third organization secretly pull strings from behind a curtain. I get that they're benevolent, that's fine, but Asimov spent the first three books building up the predictive powers of psychohistory as thoroughly grounded in scientific fact and experimentation, and vetted and improved upon by the Second Foundation, only to tear it down in this book and say -- without a bit of explanation -- that it wasn't good enough to account for the growth rate of technology, despite the fact that that's a big part of what it had been designed specifically to do and had done just fine at thus far.But now we end up with yet a *third* organization working to construct a new second empire. This one, like the second, also operates in secrecy in order to achieve its goals, and so *again* Asimov comes back to ignorance as a key to solving problems created by knowledge, and that just seems like a huge betrayal of the principles he seems to be trying to embrace. He seems to have this split desire to deify science and the pursuit of knowledge in general most of the time, while embracing ignorance at other times. It's just too incongruent, in that regard.

Meenal Srivastava

This book follows the Foundation trilogy. Asimov is a genius. I liked the Foundation trilogy but this book is even better than the trilogy. This book deals with the question of on which planet did humanity originate and the fight between second and first foundation. You just cannot put the book down. New concepts are introduced and even though it follows the same basic story about Seldon's plan, it also brings about certain deviations. It talks about the concepts which form the basis of various other Asimov's book.When you read the book you are overwhelmed by the creativity, twists and turns all in a good way. How far can you stretch your imagination into the infinite stretches of time! If you are a science fiction fan, you are incomplete unless you've read Isaac Asimov. It is a work of pure genius. This book takes you on a splendid thrilling ride into the future where your imagination is unbound.


Things took an unexpected turn with new elements in play, all perfectly plausible and well-chosen to keep things fresh and exciting. A continuation of the Foundation trilogy, the war between the two Foundations has ended but things are by no means over. While much of the First Foundation believes that the Second Foundation has been destroyed, Mayor Harlo Branno is not deceived. Not content to rule under their control, she has developed an effective though imperfect shield against mental weapons. When Councilman Golan Trevize goes around broadcasting the same suspicions, she exiles him and sends him out into the galaxy as a lightning rod. He is accompanied by historian Janov Pelorat who is on a quest to find Earth, the planet of human origins. Meanwhile on the Second Foundation, young and newly appointed Speaker Gendibal feels that the Seldon Plan is going too perfectly, and suspects another force at work. They all converge on the planet Gaia, a planet of collective consciousness, and Trevize is made to decide the fate of humanity.This was a good read, but I didn't enjoy it as much as the earlier Foundation books perhaps because some of the ideas (collective consciousness and Trevize having an ability to be right) didn't quite make sense to me. Nevertheless, it was excellently crafted and just as thrilling.

Martin Hernandez

Escrita 29 años después de la publicación del último libro de la Trilogía de la Fundación, Segunda Fundación, y 32 años después del primer relato de Fundación, Los límites de la Fundación supone el retorno de Asimov a la continuación de la saga. Según el propio Asimov, en el prólogo escrito para Fundación y Tierra en 1986, "los aficionados [...] me pidieron que continuase la serie. Les dí las gracias, pero seguí negándome. [...] Pero Doubleday se tomó aquellas peticiones con mucha más seriedad que yo".1 De hecho le ofrecieron un contrato con un anticipo 10 veces mayor que el acostumbrado, pidiéndole que elaborara una novela de 140.000 palabras: el doble que cualquiera de los volúmenes anteriores, y casi el triple de cualquier relato individual. Para ello, Asimov tuvo que releer la Trilogía de la Fundación y, como él mismo dice, "respirando hondo, me puse manos a la obra".


** spoiler alert ** As much as I enjoyed the first three books in the Foundation story I am beginning to feel that Asimov didn't really know where to go with the follow up stories. Foundation's Edge added a new hidden culture to the universe, which should have been exciting but the plot dragged out mercilessly. Asimov has a terrible way of loving to listen to his own lectures and loves to reiterate them a lot for such a short story. On the whole I found this book a marginal follow up to the excitement of the first three installments and would have a hard time referring someone else to it. I'm on to the Foundation and Earth now so maybe it will pick up again, but I hold no great expectations.

Cory Hughart

** spoiler alert ** Hm.While I enjoyed this book for it's pacing and intrigue, it has some major flaws, mostly in Asimov's attempt to tie the Foundation series to robots with a secret planet that might as well be called the "Third Foundation". This book pretty much wipes out any importance the core Foundation trilogy had, since it casts the Seldon Plan aside as imperfect, so much so that it apparently cannot take technological advancement into account.The Foundation prequels and this Foundation "sequel" seem to have more in common than either has with the original Foundation trilogy. This book came 30 years and 200+ published works later than the original Foundation, so I suppose that I would expect a change in direction, particularly since the original Foundation books were some of the very first stories/books he wrote. If I were to look back at the silly things I wrote in high school I should imagine that I'd want to write something different.

Bill Wellham

Asimov returns to the great Foundation series with a great sequel. Written decades after the original trilogy, Edge seems to have a different writing style. In my opinion, an improvement on the earlier Foundation stories. The original trilogy built up to this point using many characters and twisted plots. Asimov used his ingenious ‘psychohistory’ mechanism to drive the story through hundreds of years, always pushing along a destiny for mankind.This sequel is set five hundred years forward from the foundation’s creation. It follows ‘Golan Trevize’, an intuitive and rebellious member of The Foundation, having been expelled by the tough Lady ‘Mayor Branno’; on his journey of discovery across the galaxy. He and his accompanying professor ‘Janov Pelorat’, discover many mysteries of human history, following Pelorat’s belief in an original human planet.Meanwhile ‘Speaker Gendibal’, who can be seen as Trevize’s opposite number, has been expelled from the Second Foundation, to track down Trevize and stop him discovering the Second Foundation. Remember that the mind controlling and universe steering Second Foundation is completely secret and unknown to the First Foundation guys.Various other interesting characters are introduced, and eventually all parties are heading towards a mysterious planet called Gaia. Enough said about Gaia! Albeit that I think Asimov was very influenced by the spiritual theories and science of the 1970s. Great stuff though.An nice and unexpected ending for me.A story of galactic pursuit, discovery, secrets and mind control! I particularly enjoyed the relationship between Golan Trevize and his old professor partner, as they learnt so much from each other during the journey. Wonderfully written, in my opinion, and a well balanced plot. Asimov had enough time to think about this one, and I think he pulled it off perfectly.


So keep on playing those mind games togetherFaith in the future out of the nowYou just can't beat on those mind guerrillasAbsolute elsewhere in the stones of your mindYeah we're playing those mind games togetherProjecting our images in space and in timeJOHN LENNONcouldn't help but think of that song while reading this book.. quite possibly on it,s own the best foundation novel of all..who on earth is controlling who ? there are so many surprises along the way and the people who usually are as cold as ice in Asimov,s writings are unusually memorable here …the difference between the original series written in the 40,s and published in the 50,s and this novel written in the 80,s is striking ..its isaac at the top of his form ..i blazed through it …this is the first time I've read all 7 foundation novels in a row though I've read the original series 3 or 4 times . its on now to the final FOUNDATION AND EARTH

Sam Grover

Ok so I recently completed this fourth book in the Foundation series. It was the longest one so far and some of the motivation for that is described in the beginning of Foundation and Earth which I'm reading now. Clearly this was very different as compared to the first three, written as it was thirty years after those. Unlike the earlier books, which spanned decades, even centuries each, this one had a story that lasted a few weeks. The characters were well developed unlike the previous ones. Lack of that didn't bother me earlier as I was totally engrossed in the fast moving plot. I don't want to throw in a spoiler but Asimov brilliantly incorporated a theory popularized at the time of writing into the overall plot. I thoroughly enjoyed it!


This was an interesting book. This time we have three main parties at play, and a protagonist with a mission to find something that is trying to find him. However, it will be difficult for they to meet.

Emre Ergin

aaa mass effect 3.Bu kitap şimdiye kadar okuduğum Vakıf serisi romanları içinde beni en sürükleyeni ve aynı zamanda eser miktarda da olsa düşündüreni oldu. Karakterler serideki diğer karakterlere göre çok daha keskin ve birbirinden ayrık çizilmiş. Bir sonraki kitaba hazırlık niteliğinde, gelecek insanlarının köken sorununa, dünyaya dair yaptığı spekülasyonlar da okuması keyifli yerlerdendi. Ama şu da olabilir, beğenimin belki kitapla alakası olmayan sebepleri vardır. Görüşümü saptıran sebepler şunlar olabilir:1) Bu kitap diğerlerinin aksine bir ereader'da okundu, içinde bir teknoloji iması taşıyan bir üslubun insanı haliyle daha bir bilimkurgu sever kılması olası.2) Bu kitap vakıf serisinin çekirdeğini oluşturan üç kitaptan neredeyse yirmi yıl sonra yazıldı. (belki de otuzdu.) bu sebeple asimov'un kaleminde bir keskinleşme olmuş olabilir.3) Bu kitap genişletilmiş serinin sondan bir önceki kitabı, dolayısıyla taşların yerine oturuyor olduğu hissi belki de bir beğeni izlenimi uyandırıyordur.4) Bu kitap serinin tüm kitapları içerisinde İngilizcesi'nden okuduğum ilki. Bunun şu gibi yollarla beğenime etkisi olabilir: 4-a) Serinin çevirileri çok kötü. Bilimkurgu çevirisidir, nolcak diye düşünülüp pek bir baştan savılmış. Ama şu var, bilimkurguda dil otobüste çelikcant. 4-b) İngilizce okumaya alışkın olmadığımdan, ve aslında her satırı hemence anlayamadığımdan, en basit cümlelerde, en klişe ifadelerde dahi bir sanat var zannı oluşmuş olabilir. Bunun yanında, sadece bir eseri -bu dil ingilizce olsa bile- orjinal dilinde okuyor olmak kibrimi okşamıştır, sonra bu kibri daha hayırlı bir yöne sevketmiş, kitabın dilinin bende yaşattığı komik gururu kitaba dair bir beğeniye dönüştürmüş olabilirim.5) Bir seriden 6 kitap okuyunca, harcadığınız zamanın boşa gitmediğini düşünmek için, seriyi en nihayetinde sevmeye başladığınıza inanmak zorundasınız.Sözün özü, kitabı cidden beğendim, keyifle okudum, ama Asimov'dur yani, bu derece beğenmemem gerekirdi. Bu kadar çözümlemeye rağmen bir mantığa da oturtamadım tam. Filmi çıkacakmış, ona gidersiniz.


Finally! Asimov realizes the potential of his Foundation stories in this fourth volume in the series. There is an altogether different feel to it. Less a dramatic history and more of a suspense/mystery tale, Foundation's Edge focuses on Councilman of the Foundation Golan Trevize whose conspiracy theories concerning the existence of the Second Foundation get him in a lot of trouble. Set up opposite Golan is a young speaker of the Second Foundation, also aware that something is completely wrong with the Seldon Plan. Golan is exiled for his challenge to the status quo by the Mayor of the Foundation, his secret mission, to explore, from the peripheries, his belief that the Second Foundation exists and if so, what it is up to. The speaker's goal: to find who or what is manipulating the Seldon Plan outside the Second Foundation. Two mysteries intertwine and combine in a wonderfully new direction for the Foundation series that leaves so many more questions than before.I loved the brilliant new twist to this storyline comes in Golan's companion, Historian Jan Pelorat, a fringe academic who believes, astonishingly, that human beings, now spread over millions of habitable planets across the galaxy, actually originated on a single planet: Earth. Pelorat joins Golan as a cover for his investigation of the Second Foundation. Why did people leave Earth 20,000 years ago? And why are there no precise records of it's history or even location? Through their journey the explore mythology and legend, folklore and fairytales of the future. Was Earth destroyed in a radioactive cataclysm? Did a war between robots and humanity force human beings to flee the planet to establish a world without?The difference in this particular novel is Asimov's focus on just a couple of characters. He builds the mystery of Earth throughout the entire novel and does it in a very intriguing fashion. Written 30 years after the original Foundation trilogy, this novel shows Asimov's growth as an author. Gone is a lot of the repetitive explanations of bits of technology or futuristic custom and in it's place is solid character and plot development. Foundation's Edge ends on a bit of a cliffhanger, Golan is forced to make a choice for the future of humanity and it's not altogether clear what his decision entails. The Seldon Plan takes a backseat for the first time in the Foundation's history and a new force outside the Foundation makes its presence known. Guess I'll be finishing this series after all...


I liked this book, but more for the improvement on character building, which the other books lacked. It's easy to see why, when this book spend 450 pages with the same set of characters, as opposed to the original trilogy which spend a fraction of that. It was generally enjoyable to read, slow at parts (though often interesting), but I wasn't a fan of where the plot was taken. It was cool how the showdown was arranged, but the whole idea of Gaia not only seemed like a bunch of bullshit that didn't really fit the Foundation story (though I've never read the robot books), but, in a way, seemed to undermine the plot of the last 3 books. At least it did for me. It still got me interested in the relationship of Earth to this universe, so I'll still be picking up Foundation and Earth. Again, a good read, with better characters, but a plot that is weaker than the rest.

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