Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Recommended Reading For Fun

It has been a sheer delight to re-discover the great work by Robert A. Heinlien being ‘Starship Trooper”. As a young lad I read it when it was first published, and only saw it as a straight adventure story. Of course that was in 1959. It is with distinct pleasure as I followed Heunlien’s careet. And the story I re-read many times.

Then when the movie came out, I had my son read it, and we had interesting discussions about how the book was changed. The original movie is good, but the book is much better.

While Heinlien was writing about a possible future he was really exploring a different society structure, how that influenced the military, creating a work on training the infantry and then the Officer Candidate (Himself a Annapolis graduate and former Naval Officer, and it shows in the texture of the story), crafting a work of social commentary on the decline of current and future society that still has a edge IMO, amd most charming how his 1940-1950 morals shape the society and traditions around the story. A most brilliant piece of work for a short book.  Lest I forget he also used a Bug War as the central evil, which had been milked to death, but it works well.

The book “The Old Man’s War” by John Scalazi is much the same, however here 70 year old men and women enlist in the Colonial Marines, are slammed into perfect green new super perfect bodies. Under go super accelerated basic training and are immediately placed into combat
Against everything the universe has to offer in gritty detail. It to is a series of books which also play with different social structures and their role with the military. You are left with the same tone to the first book as if it was also a wotk by Heinlien, but it is not.

Great Works of Fiction.

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