I've been stagnating a bit on audiobooks, not really finding much to interest me. At some point I came across a reference to Isaac Asimov's Foundation series and realized I had never really read the original trilogy. I listened to a horribly distorted radio drama version of it, but the sound was so bad, I often found myself spacing out (not really a good thing while commuting) and really don't remember all that much of the story. So I decided to re-read (er, listen) to the whole thing, this time as normal unabridged audiobooks. But of course, I should start with the prequels to do the series justice. Actually, I suppose I could've started way back with the Robot series that loosely tie into this one, but let's not get carried away.
As I got into the book I definitely remembered key plot points, but I probably couldn't have named them off before re-listening. At one point I remember thinking "is this the part with all the bald people and the creepy girl that wanted to touch Hari's hair?" And I was correct! To aid me in future (as if book summaries on Amazon and Wikipedia couldn't), here are the key points of the book.
Hari presents a paper on the theory of psychohistory. The emperor (and several others throughout the prequels) thinks Hari can predict the future, and after learning that he cannot, attempt to get him to pretend to predict good futures for himself (the emperor) anyway. Hari resists and is eventually on the run from imperial agents! (or so it seems). With the help of a mysterious friend, Hari embarks on an adventure to a university, a cultish society of bald-headed farmers, a questionable neighborhood of short, mustached power plant works, and finally a power-hungry mayoral daughter who attempts to usurp the imperial throne but is thwarted at the last minute.
Reading (or listening...) with an ear towards worldviews, there definitely are one or two jabs in here against religion as an archaic, outmoded system that obviously has no place in modern society. But it's not so overly abundant (or so negative as in other boos I've abandoned) that I can't continue enjoying the series.