Title: Childhood’s End
Author: Arthur C. Clarke
Page Count/Review Word Count: 214
This book comes with a certain reputation attached to it, because c’mon – it’s Arthur C. Clarke. He’s the father of contemporary science fiction – and according to the author bio in the back of the book, he basically invented satellite technology.
Still, I wasn’t too sure what to expect from this, and I was pleasantly surprised. Sure, it does include some of the stereotypical cliches of the science fiction genre, but that’s partly because Clarke helped to invent them. And the plot is simply stunning, with a handful of surprising twists at the end that I wasn’t expecting.
Loosely speaking, the plot follows several generations of humanity after the arrival of the overlords, a mysterious alien race that seems to have humanity’s best interests at heart. The problem is, they refuse to show themselves, which makes the population of the world a little uncomfortable.
That’s because we humans tend to not take kindly to being told what to do, even if it’s in our own best interests. We also don’t like it when we have questions that someone refuses to answer. Clarke explores this and more, as well as what it means to be human.