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Between Planets (Heinlein Juveniles #5)

3.81 of 5 stars 3.81  ·  rating details  ·  3,191 ratings  ·  67 reviews
Don is a citizen of the Interplanetary Federation - yet no single planet can claim him as its own. His mother was born on Venus and his father on Earth, and Don himself was born on a spaceship in trajectory between planets. And he fights for the rights of this curious citizenship in very curious ways. Heinlein reveals in a dashing fast-moving style what can happen when pol ...more
Hardcover, 243 pages
Published 2002 by Robert Hale Ltd. (first published 1951)
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Mary JL
Jan 18, 2009 Mary JL rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: any science fiction fan
Shelves: main-sf-fantasy
Short Summary first: War is about to break out between Venus and Earth. Don Harvey, the young protagonist, is called home by his parents to mars, which is neutral. His ship is taken over by the Venus rebels and he ends up there.

One good part of this book is it basically talks about being a refugee. Don was born in space, quite rare even in this imaginary future. By law, he is a citzen of both Venus and Earth. So he ends up up Venus; because of the war, his Earth currency is not good. He has no m
I learned something very important from this book:

1.) If you read every book that an author has written in chronological order;

2.) While working 12-16 hour days in a factory that makes swimming pool liners and covers;

3.) Indeed, most of that reading is accomplished during your breaks and lunches;

4.) And in addition, you are having daily discussions with your father who wants to know why a smart guy like you with a B.A. in English is working at a factory that won't even still be there in ten year
Ok, so I am probably going to sound like a broken reord when it comes to Heinlein but he is just such a good writer. Even people who don't like the sciencey part ot science fiction will find something to like about his books. Becasue what he is best at is writing people. How they interact with others and react to situations. The fact that the characters do this generally in space is just a bonus as far as i am concerned.

Anyway, this book is about a young man who is going to school on earth. He i
I do love Robert Heinlein, I know I probably shouldn't but I don't care. About 10 years ago I read nearly everything by him that I could find, this one had escaped me so was very pleased to come across it in the second hand shop. This is one of his "juvenile" fictions, thus there is much less bottom pinching and kissing than one would expect from Heinlein, but despite the main character being a teenage boy I really really liked it. (As an aside Starship Troopers was the last Juvenile book that h ...more
Doug Turnbull
The fifth of the Heinlein juveniles, Between Planets was copyrighted by Robert A. Heinlein in 1951 and published that same year by Charles Scribner’s Sons of New York. The book was illustrated by Clifford Geary. I mention this because I believe that in order to fully appreciate the early juveniles; you should see the illustrations as they were done for the original hardback books. These books are all out of print now, but are still available at independent bookstores, most easily online through ...more
Here’s the latest of my rereads of Heinlein’s works.

After Farmer in the Sky Robert then published a decidedly more adult novel, The Puppet Masters. However, he was still with a Scribner’s contract to publish one juvenile novel a year, and so returned to the world of young adult SF with this novel.

Things in Heinlein’s own world had moved on a little since his last sojourn to his future Solar System, and this change is partly reflected in this novel. Though a juvenile novel, and one of a series d
For me, this was a 5 star read. I wasnt annoyed by anything in the story until the very end, when the author used technology to take over the starring role. That part was very pulpy, but up to that point it was the best kind of sci-fi. That being a story about people, that just happens to take place in a sci-fi ennvironment.

Our young hero is off on an adventure that crosses three planets. He becomes a soldier and a man, though not in the knowledge of a woman way, just the way of gutting enemy co
Paul Hancock
For a $1 book from the charity shop I would have been happy just to read a short book that wasn't terrible. In the end it was a great book that kept me up late reading.

This book tells the story of Don, a boy borne between planets and therefore a citizen of all the inhabited planets (Earth, Venus, Mars) but also none of them. Heinlein delivers a well paced story with intrigue, imagination, and innovation that I was not expecting. The world in which the story is set has natural inhabitants of the
Mark Nenadov
Heinlein is a name to be reckoned with in Science Fiction. This was the first book of his which I read and I enjoyed it quite a bit. It is a quality adventure story and well-suited even for a SF neophyte such as I. Additionally, there are a lot of interesting themes here such as homesickness, authoritarianism, and alienation. Pick this as an introduction to Heinlein.
Matteo Pellegrini

Don Harvey è nato nello spazio, a bordo di un'astronave in caduta libera oltre l'orbita degli asteroidi, da padre terrestre e da madre di cittadinanza venusiana, si ritrova senza patria quando le colonie di Venere decidono di ribellarsi allo sfruttamento della Federazione Terrestre. È la storia della prima guerra cosmica, sullo sfondo di una grande trasformazione del sistema solare, in orbita intorno alla luna si sta costruendo il Cercatore di Orizzonti. La nave interstellare che porterà uomini

Bryan Mullan
My Dad gave me Stranger in a strange land for Christmas. Since reading it ive been working my way through Heinlein's library.

Between Planets is a short story which was entertaining all the way through, and kept my interest to find out what happened to the hero. Good story with some good ideas.

I would recommend this as a light read or first sci-fi read.
This was the very first sci-fi book that i read and was pretty much hooked ever since.
Debra Harrison
another great by a master storyteller
My edition of this book is not one of the ones shown, but there's not much point in adding it. This is the 1981 edition of the Del Rey printing. It's neither a paperback nor a hardback--more of a hybrid bound paperback (maybe that's what people mean when they say 'library binding'. Actual library binding is either those cardboard thingies or the sort of thing you see when journals are sent out to binderies. This has the paperback cover pasted on thick cardboard and covered with plastic).

This boo
This is one of Heinlein's juvenile novels. That said, there's a couple of somewhat more adult portions, so I'd recommend that younger children shouldn't read it. At least not without having some an interesting discussion or two. But, since the main character is a older teenager, it's more aimed towards that age range.

It was written in 1951 and it certainly bears some of the hallmarks of that. Most notably in the fact that there is very little for the women in this novel to do. That said, the ma
One of my favorite juvenile Heinlein novels. While in school on Earth, Don receives a message to immediately leave school to join his parents on Mars where they are station to do some sort of research as a war is brewing between Earth and the new "republic of Venus". Don's trip is interrupted due to the war declaration.
This was one of the first SF novels I ever read. (I started with Heinlein and van Vogt who are polar opposites in every way but both having been editor Campbell Jr. stable mates.
Paul Darcy
by Robert A. Heinlein, published in 1951.

Ah, the golden age of science fiction. I always enjoy a work of fiction from Heinlein. His stories are adventurous and thoughtful if wistful as well.

This work, Between Planets, is no exception. It is, at its heart, a quest story. The protagonist, Don Harvey, has been sent a cryptic message to go back to Mars to his parents immediately. And as with any simple quest tale, this tale is far from simple.

Complications arise almost immediately. You see a war eru
Don Harvey is a young man living on a ranch in New Mexico. His parents are scientists living in the human colonies on Mars. He receives an urgent message from them, asking him to come to Mars, immediately. He is stop and see professor Jefferson, a friend of the family, and bring to Mars whatever the Professor gives him. Political tensions are rising between the Earth Federation and the colonies on Venus and Mars. When war inevitably comes, Don's less than clear citizenship (Mom was born on Vanus ...more
Our family has listened to several of Heinlein's youth novels. The quality of the Fullcast Audio production was fantastic, as always. Of course, Heinlein has something to say--all of which we have heard before, but that always bears repeating (i.e., love freedom, be courageous, live with integrity). I liked this book, but it was my least favorite of the series. (view spoiler)
Always 5 stars for you, Sir Heinlein. Being that you were pretty much the major juggernaut for "hard sci-fi", this one falls just slightly short of such classifications, from my experience. However, it's still so freaking well written that even if it was straight up fantasy, I'd still believe it, coming from you. Thanks guy!
Science fiction is perhaps at its best when it reflects on contemporary issues through the lens of the unknown: it presents a way of taking distance from oneself for a clearer view at what is right and wrong.

Referring back to the American Revolution, themes of freedom run throughout the novel, and they are as relevant today as they were in the 1950s. The biggest disappointment was — as often in older novels — the relative passivity of the women involved. This is perhaps most clearly demonstrated
Heinlein can be a problematic figure for contemporary SF readers. The proto-libertarian politics and overall militarism of books like STARSHIP TROOPERS or FARNHAM'S FREEHOLD can be offputting to modern readers (I've often joked about him being "the thinking person's Ayn Rand"), but I for one am willing to cut him an awful lot of slack because he's still a cracking good storyteller, at least in a Boy's Own Adventure sort of way and his "juveniles" (what we'd call YA today) are a great example of ...more
Delicious Strawberry
I've read some of Heinlein's other short stories - Puppet Masters, Double Star, etc - and enjoyed them, but I can;t say that I enjoyed this one as much. It's not a bad story, mind you, but for me, it just didn't make me feel or think as his other stories. It's about a teenage boy who's of mixed descent (Earth and Venus) and doesn't really explore much into the past or explore weighty matters. It was more of a 'light' reading, not as deep or thought-provoking as most other his other work. If you' ...more
In 1960, nine years after this book was written, I would have given it five stars. I was younger and we hadn't gone to the Moon yet. The story now seems to be for youth. Perhaps most sci-fi readers back then were youth. It is a good story with some import ideas to think about. The characters did not have much flesh on their bones. Don't get me wrong--I liked the book. I would not read it again, but I also did not want to stop reading. In fact, now I'm interested to read some of Heinlein's earlie ...more
When I was in junior high school, I discovered and read all the Robert A Heinlein science fiction in the school library. They had a pretty complete set of his juvenile books, which typically feature young people working and acting independently, have at least one strong female character ( although not usually the main character), and play out the consequences of future scientific and cultural developments. In this story, a high school senior finds himself caught up in a battle between Earth and ...more
Fantastic pacing. Pretty groovin' plot. Thin veneer of character work. Problematic ideas about women and race. Excellent book for a week on the sci-fi-themed beach.
Lisa (Harmonybites)
Don Harvey is "between planets." His father is from Earth and his mother from Venus--and he's caught between planets during an interplanetary war. Written in 1951, this is one of Heinlein's "juveniles" written about and for teen boys. As such, there's no weird nudist, polyamory or "free love" in this one. That, for me, is a good thing and why I prefer many of Heinlein's juveniles to many of his later adult books. I wouldn't put this at the top of Heinlein's books, nor is it one of his worse. Som ...more
A surprisingly good book. Poor don been called away from school by his mother. That almost had a kicked out vibe because of the war. It highlights the silliness of war and how it displace people. Followed buy running all over town and seeing the proof that some people can not be trusted in times of war. Thankfully later on the book you find some people can be trusted on different levels. Meeting all the new creatures was interesting and would sure love to visit all those other places. I'm thankf ...more
Short, at little less humorous than some typical Heinlein, but a decent quick read. Ending came a little abruptly for some of the build up to it.
I love most Heinlein, or at least even if I don't love the writing I love the concepts. I understand this was one of his juvenile stories, and it shows. The characters are all cardboard cutouts, with little to stand them on. The pacing is off - or at least the synopsis on the back distorts the flow of the book. I give Heinlein credit, as does the afterward author, for imagining breakthroughs that we wouldn't see in real life for decades. For imagining space travel as not that far off from what i ...more
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Robert Anson Heinlein was an American novelist and science fiction writer. Often called "the dean of science fiction writers", he is one of the most popular, influential, and controversial authors of "hard science fiction".

He set a high standard for science and engineering plausibility and helped to raise the genre's standards of literary quality. He was the first SF writer to break into mainstre
More about Robert A. Heinlein...

Other Books in the Series

Heinlein Juveniles (1 - 10 of 12 books)
  • Rocket Ship Galileo
  • Space Cadet
  • Red Planet
  • Farmer in the Sky
  • The Rolling Stones
  • Starman Jones
  • The Star Beast
  • Tunnel in the Sky
  • Time for the Stars
  • Citizen of the Galaxy
Stranger in a Strange Land Starship Troopers The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress Time Enough for Love (The World As Myth) The Puppet Masters

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“My old man says when it's time to be counted, the important thing is to be man enough to stand up.” 62 likes
“There were many, many times thereafter that Don regretted having enlisted - but so has every man who ever volunteered for military service.” 10 likes
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