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The Man Who Used the Universe Paperback – Jul 1985

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Paperback, Jul 1985
CDN$ 234.42 CDN$ 0.01 First Novel Award - 6 Canadian Novels Make the Shortlist

Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Warner Books; First Edition edition (July 1985)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446903531
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446903530
  • Product Dimensions: 17 x 10.7 x 2.5 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 68 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #3,090,132 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most helpful customer reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Another novel from the Alan Dean Foster machine. He can spin a yarn. Not his best, but a fun read nonetheless
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 18 reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
A fun, fun read. Jan. 24 1997
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
A sci-fi story set in a non-Commonwealth(Flinx) universe,
it nonetheless has a rich and engrossing setting. (In fact,
it's a shame there weren't additional books set here) The main character is an enigmatic, brilliant, and incredibly driven man that we never really get to know. Instead, we perceive him through his interactions with a varied cast of interesting "side" characters. We track our mysterious and chillingly efficient protagonist as he works his way to the top, and along the way we get to look inside
the minds of the facinating supporting characters that his actions affect. Overall an engrossing, well-told story. One of Alan Dean Foster's best efforts.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
A Vacuum of a Book March 5 1999
By Jeff( - Published on
Format: Paperback
I started reading SciFi 7 years ago because a friend of mine lent me this book. The main character in this book is often unpredictable and has a cool, sly personality that draws you to him as often as the characters in the book are drawn to this most likeable(or is it unlikeable?) deviant. Though I appreciated most of the settings in this book, it's the way in which Foster managed to create such an interesting plot through such a unique, deceptive character. He's as calm, collective and mean as "Dirty Harry" but oh so much smarter. I've read several Foster books since then, but this ultimately remains my favorite.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Keeps Me Coming Back June 12 2000
By "qed7" - Published on
Format: Paperback
This book is one of my guilty pleasures. I have read it more times than I can count and am about to purchase my third copy, having worn out two previous copies. The main character is a man driven unlike any other. He seems at times to be in search of something (a theme I find in many of Foster's books), but in the process of his quest he reshapes the entire known universe. As intriging a read the twentieth time as it was the first.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Re-readable to the point of destruction Nov. 15 2001
By Shalom Craimer - Published on
Format: Paperback
I've liked this book since I first read it, 10 year ago, and I still find myself picking it up and re-reading it again and again. The flow of the plot is simply to absorbing to put it down, and the complex plans made by the main character amaze me afresh every time. I've read this book so often, and lent it to so many people, that my first copy fell apart. So I got another one ;-)
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
I liked it, but it's not for everyone May 11 2005
By ali - Published on
Format: Paperback
I agree with most of the prior review by Justus, and I too enjoyed this book. The meteoric rise of this mysterious uberman from poor abandoned orphan to master manipulator of the known universe was entertaing and I was able to get into in and want to watch it unfold. That being said, it's not wonderfully written and I give it 4 stars because I happen to enjoy this type of plotline. It's a bit of a guilty pleasure, like being into kung-fu movies, and I can't justify the rating based on the writing itself.

The book could have used more editing, and most of the characters aren't three-dimensional nor especially engaging (in fact only one character is close to three-dimensional and he's not that interesting). The "main" character is a cold-blooded super-achiever but he's not well fleshed out and we're not given enough to really get a feel for him -- we just observe his progress as he grows his empire. I still found him pretty cool, but he's superficial.

There are inconsistencies in the characters' behaviors, and they will occasionally do or say things that are awkward/unnatural/out-of-character.

Some of the attempts to insert futuristic "slang" into the dialog fall flat, and I would have preferred the use of "sass that hoopy frood" more than some of the terms randomly spliced into the characters' speech.

Basically, there are a bunch of flaws in the book but I took them in stride and had fun reading the story anyway. If you don't find the overall plot engaging, you probably won't like the book, but if you do you may like it quite a bit.

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