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Extended Audio Sample Flashforward Audiobook, by Robert J. Sawyer Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.43 out of 53.43 out of 53.43 out of 53.43 out of 53.43 out of 5 3.43 (28 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Robert J. Sawyer Narrator: Mark Deakins Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: June 2008 ISBN: 9781455191680
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Two minutes and seventeen seconds that changed the world

A scientific experiment begins, and as the button is pressed, the unexpected occurs: all seven billion people on Earth black out for more than two minutes. Millions die as planes fall from the sky, people tumble down staircases, and cars plow into each other. During that time, everyone’s consciousness is catapulted more than twenty years into the future. At the end of those moments, when the world reawakens, all human life is transformed by foreknowledge.

Was that shocking revelation a peek at the real, unalterable future, or was it only one of many possible futures? What happens when a man tries to change it, like the doctor who has twenty years to try to prevent his own murder? How will the foreknowledge of a part of “then” affect the experience of the “now”?

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Sawyer is a writer of boundless confidence and bold scientific extrapolation.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “This first-rate, philosophical journey, a terrific example of idea-driven SF, should have wide appeal.”

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)

  • “Sawyer brings a fresh and startling approach to the familiar theme of time travel in a tale that explores the repercussions of knowing the future.”

    Library Journal

  • “Sawyer’s a joy to read—he’s for intelligent readers, but doesn’t bog you down with too much scientific mumbo jumbo…With efficient, easy-flowing prose, great characters, and a staggering premise, Flashforward is great stuff. It’s a fascinating, hard sf thriller that is very much accessible to the mainstream reader.”

    Barnes and Noble.com

  • “[A] novel full of very human pain and confusion on several levels, from the emotional ones of grief and love to the intellectual ones of theoretical physics and philosophy. If you’ve enjoyed Sawyer’s novels before, you’ll have fun with this one.”

    Analog Science Fiction and Fact

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Funfairiegirl | 2/18/2014

    " listening to the audio book "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Lynda | 2/15/2014

    " The best kind of Sci-Fi is "what if?" Sawyer explores the paradox of knowing the future and trying to change it. The TV series is nothing like the book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 John Haugh | 2/14/2014

    " The show on ABC is good. However, if not over "Hollywood/Americanized" The Large hadron collider isn't on the west coast, its in Europe... But I guess prime time America wants to see LA in flames, not french towns around Cern. Either way, if you are a geek and semi like the TV show, you will indeed like the book even more. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ron Lubovich | 2/4/2014

    " Great book, horrible tv show. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Flip | 1/14/2014

    " I wouldn't recommend this book. It was an okay story, but completely unbelievable. If someone like a global blackout had happened, one can imagine more damaged infrastructure than was described, not to mention his laughable attempts at constructing the future in 2030. Don't read this. You have better things to do with your time. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Joshua | 1/9/2014

    " This was a great book. Loved the show. The book was great. Almost wished the show was closer to the novel. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Beth Johnson | 1/8/2014

    " I really could not put this book down. I'll write more later, but I have to say there are some very prescient parts of it that were downright eerie. I have one quibble with the ending, but overall, it was an amazing story. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Edi | 12/31/2013

    " Imaginative...better than the TV series...not crazy about the ending. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Dylan Northrup | 12/17/2013

    " Good idea that was reasonably executed. It did not grip me and "make" me read it like many other books. I liked the philosophical discussions of free will vs destiny and the science was great as well, but it ultimately was merely a good book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jespera | 12/10/2013

    " The tv of the same name was loosely based on this book. A big event that makes everyone leap forward in time for 2 minutes happens and that's where the similarity pretty much ends. It is a pretty good story about time travel and destiny. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ami | 6/27/2013

    " Watched one or two episodes, decided I didn't have time to watch TV so I picked up the book. And liked it more. Nice character problems. Hurrah for discovering new authors! Very interesting ending too. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Rob Rausch | 4/29/2013

    " Very different from the TV show, but just as good. Loses points because of the bizarre ending. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kayla | 1/3/2013

    " I loved it. Well, except for the first flash forward, which will haunt me for life. If you read this book, just skip over that part. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sharon | 8/18/2012

    " Started off very well, but seemed to run out of steam, getting mired down in explanations of tachyons and neutrinos and all of a sudden an immortal future for Nobel Prize Winners - really! But a good basis for the TV series which was waaay better. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Angelica Taggart | 12/23/2011

    " Enjoyed this book -- I liked his humanoid/hybrid series, so I knew I liked his writing. I became interested after watching the TV show of the same name - and wasn't disappointed. The TV show seemed to borrow the idea of the book - it certainly didn't follow it much. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Ravis | 5/19/2011

    " Sooooo much promise, so many possible amazing endings, but the author chose the one that pretty much made the rest of the read pointless. Remember when JR woke up on Dallas? I'm not saying the book was a dream (it wasn't) but same concept. Disappointing :-( "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Speedy | 5/19/2011

    " Interesante relato, que me parece no tiene nada que ver con la serie de television. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Brian | 5/6/2011

    " This book is an example of science fiction used as a tool explore to explore the human condition and the meaning of existence, from a stereotypical Canadian perspective. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Greg | 5/1/2011

    " Far more interesting than the lifeless TV show that it inspired. A long way from great literature, or even great sci-fi, but has one good question and it hits it hard with good, believable characters and writing that moves very quickly. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Carmen | 4/25/2011

    " So dire it doesn't really deserve a rating. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Balázs | 4/17/2011

    " The ending was very futuristic and kind of ravished what Sawyer built up with fatigue and precision over the book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Gracie33 | 4/17/2011

    " I wanted to love it, but it was just ok. There was way too much physics mumbo, which was more than I wanted to try to comprehend. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Marty | 4/15/2011

    " Another great sci fi.....so much better than the TV series. This one is set in Geneve/CERN.....our old neighborhood! Much more realistic how the forward happens.....what we all suspect could happen there. Really good! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Daniel | 4/11/2011

    " Muy diferente a la serie, quizás mejor "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jillian | 4/7/2011

    " Much though I felt Sawyer was reaching for the human elements of the story, I still found myself wanting more of the physicists behind the physics, as it were. Maybe I just like the fiction part of science fiction. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Judy | 3/31/2011

    " I would give this a four or five star until the last chapter, then it definitely is a one. Seems like a cop-out. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Carmen | 3/30/2011

    " As usual LOL (Like a Lot) from my favorite kanuk.
    "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Patrick | 3/24/2011

    " Enjoyed this book. It was far better than the TV series. "

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About the Author
Author Robert J. Sawyer

Robert J. Sawyer has written short fiction published in numerous magazines and anthologies and has published eighteen novels. He has won forty-one national and international awards for his fiction, most prominently the 1995 Nebula Award, the 2003 Hugo Award, and the 2006 John W. Campbell Memorial Award.

About the Narrator

Mark Deakins is an actor whose television appearances include Head Case, Star Trek: Voyager, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. His film credits include Intervention, Star Trek: Insurrection, and The Devil’s Advocate. He recently wrote, directed, and produced the short film The Smith Interviews.