Author: Stanislaw Lem
Original language: Polish
Publisher: Avon Books, New York, 1982
Space wasn’t half so scary, half so strange, or even half so alien, as what Hal Bregg returned to. He had been away from Planet Earth for ten years space-time. But that was 127 years back home and a lot of things had changed. Sex. Money. Transit. Violence. There’s no more violence. Everyone gets it “betrizated” out of them in childhood. And that’s just the beginning…
Naturally, Hal refuses to be acclimated by the “Adapt” people. He prefers to figure it out all by himself, be a stranger in a strange land, draw his own conclusions. And he does.
“In the unlikely event that a science-fiction writer is deemed worthy of a Nobel Prize in the near future, the most likely candidate would be a Pole named Stanislaw Lem,” states THE NEW YORK TIMES. And FANTASY & SCIENCE FICTION writes, “One of the world’s finest writers… Lem has accomplished the difficult illusion of showing us a future world which may be distasteful to us, but which may be seen as quite legitimate and even desirable by its own people, and by us, if we were to change certain ways of seeing and understanding.”