The Caves of Steel Book Summary and Study Guide

One of Asimov's earliest and best books. Humanity has gone underground, living in cramped quarters in huge cities under the earth. But humans who have gone to the stars and come back, called "Spacers" have developed a very different lifestyle, living in the open air with robot helpers. Humans still on Earth hate robots and hate spacers.

But when a prominent Spacer is murdered, R. Daneel Oliver the spacer's robot (who, to complicate things, looks exactly like the murdered Spacer), is paired up with a human detective Elijah Bailey. The story is ostensibly about solving the murder, but is really about exploring life in a regimented, overcrowded underground megacity, while at the same time exploring what robots are and how they behave.

It's a very enjoyable story, with Bailey sort of the emotional Kirk to Oliver's emotionless Spock. The funniest scene: when a citydweller slaps Oliver on the face, Daneel immediate worries that the guy who slapped him may have hurt his hands!

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of The Caves of Steel

Elijah Baley has been called on to take the very sensitive case of an outerworld Spacer who was blasted in his home. Things begin to get really wild, however, when he's assigned a Spacer robot, R. Daneel Oliver, as his partner. Baley doesn't exactly like robots, and this is his first encounter with a lifelike one. But they perserve together to find the killer.
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The review of this Book prepared by Steve

Detective Elijah Bailey and his robot friend R. Daneel Olivar must solve a murder mystery.
The review of this Book prepared by steve

A detective must solve a crime that is larger than it seems...the murder of a well-known scientist. His helper is Robot Daneel Olivaw. The detective must overcome his own prejudices and solve a crime that could start a war between two worlds.
The review of this Book prepared by danielle woodruff

Chapter Analysis of The Caves of Steel

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Plot & Themes

Composition of Book Descript. of chases or violence 30%planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 30%Feelings, relationships, character bio/development 20%Descript. of society, phenomena (tech), places 20% Tone of book    -   very upbeat FANTASY or SCIENCE FICTION?    -   science fiction story Robots, Computers, VR    -   Yes Robot, PC, VR Plotlets:    -   robot detective Is this an adult or child's book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book

Main Character

Identity:    -   Male Profession/status:    -   police/lawman Age:    -   20's-30's


Earth setting:    -   medium future 22-24th century    -   distant future Takes place on Earth?    -   Yes

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment How much dialogue?    -   significantly more dialog than descript

Books with storylines, themes & endings like The Caves of Steel

Isaac Asimov Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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