The Book of the Week is the first paperback printing of The Caves of Steel by Isaac Asimov, cover art by Robert Schulz, another all-time classic of science fiction first published in 1953.
Isaac Asimov was one of the most beloved authors of science fiction ever, and The Caves of Steel is one of his best works. The Caves of Steel follows a murder investigation by a detective of the future and his robot sidekick. This was Asimov's first robot novel, preceded by the short stories collected in I, Robot. The Caves of Steel was an important early example of science fictional mystery, a sub-genre that has made a recent comeback, notably in the works of Richard K. Morgan. It also featured stronger characterization than much of Asimov's work and a host of social commentary, including using robots as a metaphor to examine racism. (See my book club's web page on The Caves of Steel for more information.)
As fine a book as The Caves of Steel was, there was an even more seminal science fiction novel that first appeared in 1953, as we will see next week.