Book Review: Childhood's End by Arthur C. Clarke

Childhood's End

By Arthur C. Clarke 1953


This was the moment when history held its breath, and the present sheared asunder from the past as an iceberg splits from its frozen, parent cliffs, and goes sailing out to sea in lonely pride.

Perspective is a fickle thing. You can go about your days thinking you’re engaged with your life, working towards increasing in knowledge & understanding, feeling like you’ve done a good job mining the depths of yourself and what it means to be human. Then, as if a freight train has passed with in inches of your face, you are startled into awareness that you are nothing more than kid swimming in a back yard kiddie pool.

For me, Childhood’s End is the freight train and Arthur C. Clarke is the conductor.

To any fan of SciFi, the premise of this book is simple, it’s concepts familiar, and it’s characters relatable. However, it’s profoundly engaging and completely delightful. At some point you realize this book was written in 1953 and you’re hit by the train.

Clarke is a master.

I’ve had long, involved conversations with several people about this book. Each one about different aspects of it. Many about thoughts that seemed like throw-aways during the course of the story but had a depth that only revealed itself over time.

I will read this book again and probably very soon.

Written by - Permanent Link

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