It was Isaac Asimov who coined the word “robotics” almost forty years ago. No less than seven of his collections have included stories of metal, plastic, and even organic mechanical men (and a woman or two as well, not to mention a dog) whose positronic brins lead them—usually with a little human assistance—into every variety of situation, often of the most unexpected sort and with the most unlooked-for consequences.
Now Asimov’s robot tales have been gathered under one cover for the first time. In THE COMPLETE ROBOT’s thirty-one stories you’ll find Robbie, the faithful nursemaid, and Tony, whose thoughtful and considerate attentions to a lonely wife provoke an all-too-human response. There are robots who do not behave as they were designed to, robots who obey their iridium brains all too literally, and robots who aspire to humanity. And then there are the humans: Mike Donovan and Greg Powell, the field testers for experimental robots; Peter Bogert, Alfred Lanning, Gerald Black, and the rest of the U.S. Robots and Mechanical Men research and development staff—and especially the company’s chief robot-psychologist, the steely Dr. Susan Calvin.
Here is every last one of Isaac Asimov’s robot stories, including some which have never before appeared in a book. Asimov fans, science fiction fans, robot fans, and htose who love entertaining, logical, puzzling, and stimulating tales will all welcome THE COMPLETE ROBOT.
This collection contains all of the non-novel length robot stories written through the mid-1970’s, and as such includes some of Asimov’s best work.
It also includes (as a result) all of I, Robot (less the “bridge” passages which lie between the stories in I, Robot), all of The Rest of the Robots (less The Caves of Steel and The Naked Sun), and a bunch of other stuff.
(It also includes some “semi-robot” stories, such as ”Sally,” and a few which are not in any other Asimov anthology.)
Of course, it leaves a few items out written in the last ten years of Asimov’s life such as “Robot Dreams” and ”Robot Visions,” but on the whole these later stories are relatively lesser works. “The Bicentennial Man” is Asimov’s last seminal robot story, and it is included, as are all the ones that came before. This can, then, be taken as a definitive collection of the robot shorts and should be owned by any Asimov fan or student.
Need I add that, ironically, it’s only sporadically available? The Science Fiction Book Club periodically comes out with new printings, but otherwise, one’s best bet is a good used book service on the Internet.
|“A Boy’s Best Friend”|
|“Point of View”|
|“Robot AL-76 Goes Astray”|
|“Stranger In Paradise”|
|“Robbie” aka “Strange Playfellow”|
|“Let’s Get Together”|
|“The Tercentenary Incident”|
|“Catch That Rabbit”|
|“Little Lost Robot”|
|“Escape!” aka “Paradoxical Escape”|
|“The Evitable Conflict”|
|“-That Thou Art Mindful of Him”|
|“The Bicentennial Man”|