Mike's Reviews > The Forever War

The Forever War by Joe Haldeman
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's review
Jul 09, 07

Read in July, 2006

The main downside, in my experience, to the military SF genre is that it doesn’t really give you much to think about. The novels are fun, but for the most part they tend to focus on the action. That’s not a bad thing if that’s what you’re looking for--indeed, I quite often find myself in the mood for that sort of story. Still, it’s nice to find a member of the genre that isn’t just a less-philosophical rehash of Starship Troopers. (By the way, I do quite like most of the Heinlein I’ve read, including Starship Troopers. I just like a little variety now and then.) This one is right up there with Armor and Ender’s Game as one of the best examples of the genre. It might even be better. The writing style is just as good, but where those other two stories operate on a bit more of a fairy-tale-ish level, The Forever War has a much grittier realism to it--not surprising from an author who is also a Vietnam veteran. I guess whether or not that makes it “better” is open to interpretation--all I know is that I really liked it.
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message 7: by [deleted user] (last edited Sep 08, 2007 08:44PM) (new)

Really? I actually loved how much the book made me think. It explores so many different topics (from overpopulation to homosexuality to political control vs. freedom of choice to just a miriad different things) and yet it manages to fit it all into the skin of a relatively normal sci-fi book. Though, really, what i loved most about it was how it was written such a long time ago that the year we're living in now seemed like fantasy, and it made me think about how we think of the future today and compare it to the author's thought of the future, and they're really not that different, except for the dates. The dates just keep moving further and further back. That makes you wonder if there will ever be a time when these things will come true, or if they'll just keep getting moved back. Anyway, i found this book incredibly interesting. (As you can see).

Mike My whole point was that this book went beyond the level of standard military SF.

message 5: by [deleted user] (new)

Yeah, to that i agree completely. I'm sorry, it's just that your review seemed as if you were categorizing the book in the same category as all other sci-fi, but it's really so much more.
Anyway, like I said, I agree.

message 4: by Radu (last edited Oct 15, 2009 06:30AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Radu Stanculescu Which one is Armor? The one by John Steakley?

Mike That's the one.

Radu Stanculescu Thanks, I added it to my list.

Robert Enders Game, i think, is in a higher category. More complex; more engaging; more thought provoking. Forever War did not stir me.

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