A Choice of Gods
A Choice of Gods should really have been an essay, and much shorter. As a novel, it wastes space on a skeletal storyline that feels grudging, and mostly just gets in the way of Simak’s philosophical points – mostly, a fairly simplistic view that acquisitiveness has ruined the planet. He veers close to a ‘noble savage’ philosophy, though these tribes have kept a few newer ways. Simak is on stronger ground with the needs of the robots, but doesn’t do enough with them. He also introduces aliens, in the form of a literal can of worms. Unfortunately, also some pretty traditionally rigid gender roles, though he should have known better by the time this was written.
Essentially, the contents of a mildly interesting essay spread into a disappointing and not very interesting novel. Recommended only for Simak completists.