Solaris – the book

I just finished reading a real sci-fi classic. Solaris by Stanislaw Lem. I read an old Swedish translation, made from the German translation from the Polish original from 1961. There are newer translations, but I haven't had access to them.

Three films have been made of Solaris, of which Andrei Tarkovsky's from 1972 is the most famous. A film I, for ages, have intended to see, but never got around to do. I really should watch it.

Probably because I knew of Tarkovsky's film before the book, I always assumed Lem was a Russian author. Wrong! He was Polish, born in 1921 in Lwow, which is now in Ukraine. He died in 2006.

The story is very original, and while it is over fifty years old, it does not feel dated. Except for one thing. Computers are mentioned, but not used very much. Data is still mainly in books. But it does not take anything away from the story. A good and puzzling read.

Lem was a very productive author, and I'll see if I can find any other of his books in languages I can read.


  1. It was dramatized on BBC Radio 4 a while back, now I regret not listening to the series!

    • That sounds very interesting! I do not think I ever heard a sci-fi radio drama. Radio dramatization (or just one person reading a book) is a great way to enjoy literature, imho. In the 90s, Swedish public radio made a great dramatization of LOTR, quite a lot better than the BBC one from the 80s. I even hold it a little bit above Jackson’s movies 🙂
      Sadly, the copyright regime does not allow for that (tax-payed) series to be available on the Internet. 🙁

    • Thanks for the comments and the suggestion 🙂

      I do not even own a smart phone. Nor a tablet. It is my fear of technology! 😉

    • It’s really fast for a graphical web. And I can watch/listen from Sweden. At least the stuff I checked. 🙂

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