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Privateers (Privateers #1)

3.53 of 5 stars 3.53  ·  rating details  ·  428 ratings  ·  20 reviews
America Has Ceded The Heavens To The Tyrants -- And The Renegades. The U.S. has abandoned its quest for the stars, and an old enemy has moved in to fill the void. The potential wealth of the universe is now in malevolent hands. Rebel billionaire Dan Randolph -- possessor of the largest privately owned company in space -- intends to weaken the stranglehold the new despotic ...more
ebook, 400 pages
Published April 1st 2011 by Tor Books (first published 1985)
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Privateers reads like a bad 1950's science fiction book, complete with the embarrassingly backwards "rouge" hero, plastic and shallow love triangle, and jingoism. The writing I found dry. The plot is like a little boy's fantasy, but with none of the imagination a young boy could have brought to the story. Not recommended unless you are looking for annoying, unlikeable protagonists and pages of pointless dialogue.
Jason Braida
I'll give this four stars.

An interesting book, and a bit of an orphan when it comes to Bova's Grand Tour. Written in the 1980's and published in 1985 during the height of the cold war the book depicts a world in which the Soviet Union won the Cold War forcing the nations of earth to abandon their space faring aspirations. Only a few third world nations, Japan, and China continue to seek the economic exploitation of space in the face of the Soviet Union's determination to expunge capitalism from
I would give the book 2.5 out of 5 stars, It wasn't horrible (I did finish it without too much trouble but also without too much enjoyment) but it wasn't good either. So far I would say it is the worst Ben Bova's novel I have read so far (only read 5 books to date from him).

The plot of the novel was terrible. What it felt like was a power play of whose was biggest and good versus evil. The Russians were evil and greedy. They raised the cost of moon ore to try and drive Astro Corporations out of
Mike Sorenson
A good book, but not a great one. The plot was compelling, but jumbled. Sometimes I had to stop and catch up with myself as to whether I'm reading present, past or future. Not the way I would write.

I didn't find the characters too likeable. Dan Randolph, was to me, immoral, corrupt and selfish; the very things that are destroying America (and the world as a whole). Nearly every decision he made was for his own benefit, even if it impacted negatively on those he claimed as his friends. The only
The lifespan of a Science Fiction novel is often cut short by the backdrop their author chooses. Such is the case with Ben Bova’s Privateers, where we’re shown a near future where a Communist Soviet Union dominates space and America lies in decay. If Bova had waited a year before he started writing, he might have altered his vision entirely.

As a reader, especially a reader of Science Fiction, it’s not difficult to suspend your belief enough to enjoy Privateers, but the Cold War mentality that th
Everything incorrect about the Soviet domination of space is completely forgiven since this is a Cold War book. Certainly this is the best Bova book I've read so far, (Powersat and Mars Life the others) but considering I picked the wrong titles before that's not saying much. By the end of this book (and having read Powersat before) I'm really pretty sick of Dan Randolph. I've got a lot of Paul McAuley and Alastair Reynolds stuff to read through, when I come back to visit Bova's books again I'll ...more
A decent example of what the possible future looked like during the Cold War (this was published in 1986).

The year is 20XX, the Soviet Union has cowed the United States and China into abandoning their space programs. They now have a lock on all materials harvested from the moon; only a few third-world nations are allowed small space ventures. Swashbuckling industrialist Dan Randolph, operating from Venezuela, comes up with a plan to break this monopoly by going out and catching himself an astero
Edward Creter
I coulda gave this a four-star report except for the fact that it stigmatizes Russians. (This being a bok from the 80s I'm not surprised.) Dan Randolph is a billionaire with interests in outer space and a huge chipon his shoulder. (Not talkin computer chip either!) He's racing the (then) USSR to claim asteroids for profit and to improve relations with Venezuela. But Vasily Malik is usually one step ahead in business and the bedroom as he's destined to win the love of Teresita Hernandez away from ...more
Kyle Carroll
Ben Bova is one of my favorite authors. Most of his books have gotten a 4 or 5 star rating from me. That being said, this book was just average. The plot wasn't very exciting, and didn't really "grab" me until the last 100 pages or so. It was very political, and outdated (It was written during the Cold War), however it is still worth a read. Just don't expect it to be fast paced and riveting.
I enjoyed this book. I have read many of the author books from this loose series and enjoyed most of them. The book is dated but is still good. The author does get a little too tangled up in politics but steers clear of the technical aspect of the science that has plagued him in the past. The book starts out odd because it drops you into the middle of an event without having the back story. The author uses this technique often in his novels but this one seemed more annoying that in other books. ...more
Joan Huehnerhoff
I loved it. It is science fiction!
Sohail Keegan
It has been a few years since I read Privateers. This novel is everything I've come to expect from Ben Bova. If you like realistic science fiction set in the near future, this one's for you. The book was nothing like what the back-cover blurb led me to believe. It's more a story of humanity and politics, with the science-fiction part providing a backdrop for the story.
Had I read this prior to the fall of the USSR, I think I would have found it scarier. Regardless, nice mind game, the plot was entertaining, though some of the dialogue/elements were thin.
H. Brandon
Good classic science fiction.
Casey Wheeler
A classic written in the early 1980's. Keep in mind when it was written when you read it and it will make more sense in parts.
It was a fun read, but the plot was predictable and the characters stereotyped.
Dan J
Dan J added it
Jun 29, 2015
Alexander Rhees
Alexander Rhees marked it as to-read
Jun 29, 2015
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James marked it as to-read
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Ben Bova was born on November 8, 1932 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. In 1953, while attending Temple University, he married Rosa Cucinotta, they had a son and a daughter. He would later divorce Rosa in 1974. In that same year he married Barbara Berson Rose.

Bova is an avid fencer and organized Avco Everett's fencing club. He is an environmentalist, but rejects Luddism.

Bova was a technical writer fo
More about Ben Bova...

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Privateers (2 books)
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