Meg's Reviews > The Moon is a Harsh Mistress

The Moon is a Harsh Mistress by Robert A. Heinlein
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May 16, 2011

it was amazing
Read from March 23 to May 16, 2011

Wow. What a great read. I picked up this book after two VERY different people recommended it to me - my crazy organic farmer existentialist physical therapist and a cousin of mine who is in the Air Force as part of a counter-insurgency (COIN) course. What I love about this book:

1. It is an insurgency manuel - through the story of the moon's liberation from Terra (earth) Heinlein is demonstrating how to successfully overthrow a colonial/imperial power. THe kicker - he is WAY before his time in terms of addressing the psychological aspects of insurgency in a way the military didn't address until 2003. This was written in 1965. Keep in mind that I wrote my honors thesis in college on COIN, so this was a big geek fest for me.

2. It is so damn interesting to read, despite including so much information about insurgency, revolution, historical references to revolutions, etc. because he has developed the culture of the moon around concepts of economics, feminism, marriage, and libertarian ideals. He has even gone so far as to write entirely in the style of "loonies" or people living on the moon. Imagine a culture developed on the moon as a result of CHina, Russia, the U.S. etc. dumping their overload of prisoners off-world. Imagine a culture where the ratio of men to women is 5:1, and a culture has developed where women are a precious (and thus powerful) commodity, where the normal marriage makes no sense and so people have developed line marriages, plural marriages, and where there is no law, but people co-exist in a Libertarian paradise. It's fascinating.

Basically - read it. I haven't been turned on like this by a book since I finished Orwell's Homage to Catalonia (hmmm...pattern?).

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03/23/2011 page 15
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