Foundation and Empire is the story of first contact between the two Foundations of Hari Seldon. The Seldon Plan guided the First Foundation safely through two centuries of chaos as the Galactic Empire disintegrated. Seldon's recorded holographic image appeared in the Council Chamber on Terminus at moments of crisis predicted by pshychohistory, and ...
Foundation and Empire is the story of first contact between the two Foundations of Hari Seldon. The Seldon Plan guided the First Foundation safely through two centuries of chaos as the Galactic Empire disintegrated. Seldon's recorded holographic image appeared in the Council Chamber on Terminus at moments of crisis predicted by pshychohistory, and his voice was heard. Even war between the Foundation and the remains of the Empire was foreseen - and planned for - by the great scientist. But Seldon had no way of predicting the birth of the Mule, a mutant of uncanny power and unlimited ambition. The Mule's conquests are effortless and his subjects mind-controlled slaves. The Foundation is powerless against the supernormal force the Mule exerts. The Seldon Plan is in tatters. Two men and a woman from Terminus flee to the ruins of might Trantor in an effort to discover where the mysterious Second Foundation was established. Its help is needed desperately against the mental powers of the Mule. But the Mule, using those same astonishing powers, is also looking for the Second Foundation.
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After documenting the inevitable showdown between the Foundation and the Galactic Empire (short and perhaps not as interesting as it could have been), Asimov introduces the best character in the Foundation series: the Mule. The Mule is an enigmatic conqueror bent on subjugating the entire galaxy, and his mutant mental abilities render him capable of singlehandedly disrupting the Seldon Plan. Foundation and Empire follows Toran, an independent trader, and his wife, Bayta, as they seek first the aid of the elusive Mule, and then a means to stop him before it's too late. The plot is ingenious, and the writing masterful. This is a worthy sequel to Foundation, and in many ways even better.
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