Books in Arthur C Clarke's Rama series of novels (in order of publication).
- "Rendezvous with Rama"
- With Gentry Lee: "Rama II"
- With Gentry Lee: "Garden of Rama"
- With Gentry Lee: "Rama Revealed"
The only decent story in this series is Rendezvous. Slightly dated theme of self-contained extra-terrestrial habitats, but there is enough innovation & good story telling to make it a worthy read.
Rama II is garbage, primarily because of major readability issues.
Garden & Revealed are generally readable. But if I had some other book at hand, I would rather skip them.
Third party illustrations on the series.
A common reason some people don't like Rama series, particularly Rendezvous, is because of the difficulty visualizing the interior of Rama. I have seen some very good pictures on the web that can help reading - alas never saved links.
No matter. I will be looking out for them now, and add here when I find a good one.
- Some hand-drawn illustrations of cities & creatures inside Rama (drawn from multiple books in the series).
- Very good 3 minute movie showing the approach & landing of human spacecraft on Rama, & entry of human explorers through airlock into the ship. But ship interior is an enigma here.
Rescue Party appears to be the mother of all Clarkian fiction, & Rama series doesn't escape.
- Main novel, Rendezvous, appears to be essentially a detailing of the cylindrical alien spaceship with kilometer-scale dimensions that appears in this story.
- Octospiders seen in the 3 sequels could have been derived from tentacled aliens in Rescue Party.
- Galactic administration entrusted with their duties by powers beyond the beginning of time reminds me of the end of Rama Revealed.
- In Rescue Party, tentacled aliens carry a paralyzer they might have to use on humans. In Rama Revealed, octospiders actually use a paralyzer when they "kidnap" a woman.
With minor variations, Rendezvous is simply a longer version of Jupiter Five. In fact, last one third of Jupiter Five gives you a preview of the 3 Rendezvous sequels too!