Blank-133x176
Starship Troopers
 
by
Robert A. Heinlein
Rate this book
Clear rating

Starship Troopers

3.97 of 5 stars 3.97  ·  rating details  ·  90,519 ratings  ·  2,555 reviews
Starship Troopers is a classic novel by one of science fiction's greatest writers of all time and is now a Tri-Star movie. In one of Heinlein's most controversial bestsellers, a recruit of the future goes through the toughest boot camp in the universe -- and into battle with the Terran Mobile Infantry against mankind's most frightening enemy.
Paperback, 0 pages
Published May 1st 1975 by Berkley (first published November 1959)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Starship Troopers, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Starship Troopers

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Paul Dura
Starship Troopers is listed amongst the recommended books by the United States Air Force for a reason. For those who plan on pursuing a military career, this book exhibits the very ideals upon which our current military standards are based. Camaraderie, Sacrifice, and Responsibility are more than mere words to the protagonist. The distinction between a fighting man and a soldier is made. The distinction between a superior rank and a true officer is made. Johnny Rico is a soldier in more than mer...more
Manny
My first impulse is to dismiss it as an appalling piece of militaristic propaganda, whose one saving grace is that it's at least much better than the movie. But that wouldn't be doing the book justice. With all its faults, I simply loved it as a 14 year old, and I'm in no way alone there. Why is it so fascinating?

Let me start by dismissing a couple of possible theories. One reviewer wonders if it's deadpan satire. I suppose, when you see some of Heinlein's later books (Stranger in a Strange Land...more
Michael

Big nasty communist spiders are attacking Earth and all the planets it has colonized! It's a battle between man and bug, and who is to save us?

I'll tell you who! Guys with really fucking big guns, that's who! With spacesuits that make it so they can jump over buildings, and deflect bullets, and drop from spaceships to the surface of planets without getting hurt! That's who!

These guys get dropped onto planets with their spacesuits and their big guns, and they can incinerate some little brown peo...more
Jeff
"What do you mean 'They' cut the power? How could they cut the power man they're animals!"

Aliens (sure it's the wrong movie, but a cool quote nevertheless)

The book has very little in common with the movie. The film is something that is ubiquitous on cable. You can probably see the entire thing in snippets just by changing the channels over the course of a year.

In both the film and book, the soldiers battle big bug thingies. The book is only bookended with battle sequences, the rest is training...more
Mike (the Paladin)
I enjoyed this book greatly. While I certainly can't be said to agree with Heinlein on every aspect of life, politics, or theology...I do appreciate where he's coming from in this book. (Remember it's a 1959 book, before the idiotic handling of Vietnam became apparent). There are thought provoking ideas in this book even if it is considered a YA book. Agree or disagree, it's a good read.

By the way, I must say this. It's often (actually more often than not) true that a movie doesn't live up to t...more
Lucas
Where do I even begin? For starters, I should let the reader know that I'm not basing my score on the politics of the book (as laughable as I think they are) but on the plot of the book, or rather the complete lack of a plot in the book. While things do happen, some of them pretty big, Mr. Heinlein has seen fit that we should not be party to any of those things. Instead, he saves the most loving descriptions for daily life at boot camp. Seventy, yes seventy, pages of a two hundred-odd page book...more
Thomas
Chock-a-block full of gung-ho jingoism, narrow minded fascist pipe dreams, and casual descriptions of institutional dehumanization as well as violence...basically everything you would expect from a book written in the perspective of a futuristic jarhead. I have never read a book in which I agreed with so little, but loved so much.

Jenny
Sep 19, 2012 Jenny rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: no one
This was terrible and not interesting at all. This book is for people who are interested in the nuances of military training and organization and did not feel like classic science fiction to me. I guess technically it takes place in the future and in space but this is such a minor part of the book that it shouldn't really fall into the sci-fi category. As I entered the last 50 pages, I seriously considered stopping reading. I was confused by the military ranks and didn't care about any of the ch...more
Dan Schwent
Against his family's wishes, Juan "Johnnie" Rico joins the Mobile Infantry and the war against the Bugs. Will he make it out alive?

Yeah, I don't really know what to think about this book. I picked it up solely because it was an inspiration for one of my favorite books, Old Man's War by John Scalzi. While the writing was very good, there was never an "I can't put it down" moment. I'd say ninety percent of the book was Juan Rico's military life. There wasn't a lot of action until the end.

I liked t...more
Randy
If you have seen the movie- forget it. Besides the names, it shares very little with RAH's study on why free men subject themselves to a loss of freedom in order to ensure freedom for others.
This book greatly influenced me when I was a boy- and it still colors my thinking today- 35 years later.
This should be on the reading lists of every high school.

AFTERNOTE!

I would like to correct what appears to be a common misconception about the society described in Heinlein's book:

YOU DID NOT HAVE TO BE

...more
TK421
No doubt that if you're looking at this review, you have probably seen the movie of the same name...not a bad movie, but not a good one either. I read this one in high school after having seen a green placard on I-90 that said "Movie Location: STARSHIP TROOPERS."

I thought that was pretty cool...not many cool things happen in South Dakota, so having a pretty descent (I thought at the time) movie shot in our Badlands made me even more interested in the book. Sometime later, I bought a copy at a us...more
Jesse
If you're expecting a carbon copy of the movie in print form, you're in for a bit of a surprise. Heinlein was one of the greatest science fiction writers of his time, possibly one of the best ever - not the sort to write the cheesy jokes and poor dialogue the Hollywood version spouts. Don't get me wrong, I thoroughly enjoy the film, as an action-adventure film, but the novel from which it derives is a much better piece of work.

The writing in this book is very technical. Though told from a first-...more
Melissa Rudder
Robert A. Heinlein’s Starship Troopers did nothing for me. Its cover advertises controversy and boasts of the exciting journey of Johnnie Rico through the intergalactic military camp of the future. It sounded promising; unfortunately, I was not awed or entertained. If anything, I was pleased the novel was a quick read so that I could more readily set it aside.

To follow a character through the ups and downs of boot camp and warfare and to revel in his victories and sympathize with his failings, i...more
Eric
Mar 21, 2013 Eric rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: A must for sci-fi fans
I had been meaning to read this for a while, and am glad I finally got around to it. I have a bunch of unrelated thoughts, which I'll just list below in no particular order of importance.

- I'm sure I am not the first to note this, but Starship Troopers is nothing like the '90s movie that shares its name -- not in plot, tone, or any other respect, other than a few of the main characters' names being left unchanged. The book is far, far superior.

- This book was very far ahead of its time, in terms...more
Kat Kennedy
I watched Starship Troopers first. I found it amusing, gory, action based and fluffy. When I read the book I wondered if the directer/script writer had read the same one I had. Turns out that he never finished this book and made the story up as he saw fit. Suddenly everything made sense to me.

As far as pacing and plot go, you won't find any of that here. There isn't much of a plot to this book and the story arc, so to speak, is more like a low lying limbo poll. Straight and short.

What I absolut...more
Andrew
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Chris
This book is controversial. Says so right there on the cover - "The Controversial Classic of Military Adventure!" A quick look at its Wikipedia page seems to support this, claiming that the book has been criticized for its literary merit, its support of the military, up to and including fascism, racism, utopianism, and gods knows what else. What is certainly true is that it's a book that is guaranteed to make someone, somewhere very angry.

In the unspecified future, humanity has taken to the star...more
Sesana
Sorry, I just didn't like it. I'm not knocking Heinlein's skills as a writer. The one thing he does very, very well here is to make the main character's voice realistic. Reading this book feels exactly like sitting down to several long conversations with a combat veteran. The way he describes military service is likewise very realistic. That said, I found myself bored by the near total lack of action. The vast majority of this book is nothing by military training, which in most ways are absolute...more
Hudson
I saw this movie more than once and always enjoyed the social satire as well as the sci-fi "shoot 'em up" fighting scenes with the bugs. I'm not really a huge sci-fi fan so I had no idea who Robert Heinlein was or that the movie was adapted from a book. At the end of the day this was a great find for me because I liked the book and I think I might be open to more sci-fi going forward (also just read The Martian coincidentally).

Here's the thing: in addition to the fighting scenes and sci-fi type...more
Kirstine

At the moment I'm 1 month through my 4 month basic training program in the army. I volunteered for this, and when the 4 months are up I can continue with my life as though nothing has happened. But something has happened. I have, basically, been taught to kill, to fight, to function as decent soldier. And it puzzles me how we can teach young men and women how to do these things, and not at the same time teach them about morals, about ethics and about knowing what's right and wrong. I say teach,...more
Jason
I wanted to like this book, but there was so little plot. The little plot that was given was only a segway to a rant on military living or very thinly vealed social commentary. I don't mind science fiction having social relevance, but it should no be so blatantly presented as a teacher's class room lecture. The book is only 200 pages long and I would say only about 45 pages of it had anything to do with a plot. The rest was a continuous rant. I didn't disagree with all of the authors objections....more
sckenda
This Hugo Award-winning 1959 classic by “the dean of American science fiction writ­ers” just happens to take place in the 22nd century and involves intergalactic warfare against insectoid monsters, but it nonetheless captures the feel of military service, and the ordeal of young recruits from basic train­ing to battle-hardness, with a vividness that will resonate for any serviceman in any era. Heinlein, a Naval Academy graduate, brings these things to life through the story of John­nie Rico, who...more
Jon
Probably 3.5 stars but I'll round up since it did win the Hugo.

The beginning and the ending chapters were good. The middle was interesting, but not controversial. I believe Heinlein asked himself the question "What if our 20th century democracies collapsed? What if veterans picked up the pieces? What sort of government would result?" He answered with Starship Troopers. The Bug Hunt was just gravy.

Most of the philosophical dissertations intrigued me, probably because of the military slant. Even...more
Michael
Nov 26, 2009 Michael rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: sci fi fans, strategy buffs, Historians
Recommended to Michael by: Paul Verhoeven
First, let's get the old debate out of the way: Was Heinlein deliberately describing a Fascist society in positive terms? Yes. The positive proof comes on page 183, in which a teacher, praising the system in which only veterans have the right to vote, says the following: "To vote is to wield authority; it is the supreme authority from which all other authority derives - such as mine to make your lives miserable once a day. _Force_ if you will! - the franchise is force, naked and raw, the Power o...more
Jonathan
A few things that come to mind that were different between the film and the book:

(view spoiler)...more
Simon
My reading this novel was long overdue and I looked forward to it eagerly, especially after seeing how much controversy it still generates today. Now that it comes to reviewing it, one thing I don't really have to worry about is spoilers. This isn't a conventionally plotted novel, more a reflection of the protagonist's (Rico) military career.

What particularly makes this novel so controversial is that Heinlein is postulating, in his own inimical away, a utopian military led society. Furthermore,...more
Stephen
4.0 stars. Classic Heinlein military science fiction that is well plotted and contains a memorable main character.

Winner: Hugo Award for Best Science Fiction Novel (1960)
Alicja
rating: 3/5

Decided finally to listen to the audiobook (preferably while working out). Classic sci-fi so many people seem to love while others hate. It also spurs on political discussions galore so I chose to see for myself what all the fuss is about. And, oh boy...

Let's just make something clear, I love military/war types of fiction but in real life I am pretty left of the spectrum on most issues (moderate on others). So when I read this book I tried to keep an open mind and rate it based on fic...more
Arun Divakar
The term 'soldiering on' attains a whole new meaning when you view it from the point of someone who has worn the uniform. People I know who have quit the service still fondly remember their days of being in there. But even then none of them as far as I know prefer war or even the skirmishes that lead up to it. In war rooms, the generals and statesmen make the decisions and the soldiers go out and do what they are told. When I once asked someone as to have you ever throught as to why you are aske...more
Robert
There are some famous critical debates: Is there irony in Moll Flanders? Did Chaucer get bored and give up or did he never actually plan to write two stories for each pilgrim? Did Lady MacBeth fake her faint? (Yes - she was in her night clothes not her corset.) To these I would like to add, Starship Troopers: Fascist manifesto or the most deadpan satire ever written?

Either way it is necessary to work out what is wrong with the society portrayed in the novel and also where the faults in the moral...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Sci-fi and Heroic...: Starship Troopers 126 136 Sep 09, 2014 02:28PM  
Why so little action? 50 217 Jul 07, 2014 06:28AM  
Book better than the movie (no surprise) 20 89 Jul 01, 2014 08:51PM  
ebook version of Starship Troopers 15 166 Jun 02, 2014 04:22AM  
Is it true about the low radiation = no evolution? 16 98 May 28, 2014 03:46PM  
Sci-Fi Indonesia: Baca bareng: Starship Trooper 51 28 May 20, 2014 09:45PM  
SciFi Book Club: Starship troopers-government 24 20 Apr 02, 2014 06:29AM  
  • A Case of Conscience (After Such Knowledge, #4)
  • The Big Time
  • A Hymn Before Battle (Posleen War, #1)
  • The Uplift War (The Uplift Saga, #3)
  • Protector (Known Space)
  • Armor
  • Way Station
  • The Caves of Steel (Robot, #1)
  • The Forever War (The Forever War, #1)
  • This Immortal
  • The Ghost Brigades (Old Man's War, #2)
  • Relentless (The Lost Fleet, #5)
  • They'd Rather Be Right
  • Downbelow Station (Company Wars, #1)
  • Orphanage (Jason Wander, #1)
  • Echoes of Honor (Honor Harrington, #8)
  • A Deepness in the Sky (Zones of Thought, #2)
205
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
More about Robert A. Heinlein...
Stranger in a Strange Land The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress Time Enough for Love (The World As Myth) The Puppet Masters Friday

Share This Book

“Happiness consists in getting enough sleep. Just that, nothing more.” 2669 likes
“There are no dangerous weapons; there are only dangerous men.” 189 likes
More quotes…