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To the Stars

3.46  ·  Rating details ·  265 ratings  ·  44 reviews
SHANGHAIED INTO ETERNITY...

Men were always needed for the long passage. And Captain Jocelyn knew that not even wealth and women were sufficient lure to fill his crew vacancies. For there was a price that those who entered the starship Hound would pay for their high adventure - one that no sane man would accept.

A prisoner in the timelessness of the swift passage to distant
...more
Audio CD, Audiobook, 0 pages
Published 2004 by Galaxy Audio (first published February 1950)
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Average rating 3.46  · 
Rating details
 ·  265 ratings  ·  44 reviews


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Craig
Mar 02, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was halfway through this one before I figured out why it seemed familiar; I first read it years ago as a small Ace paperback with the title Return to Tomorrow. It was originally published in John W. Campbell's Astounding SF magazine in 1950. It's a relatively short and bleak story detailing the problems of less than faster than light interstellar travel, and thus, by extension, one-way time-travel. It's quite dark, with one meanness and disaster following another, and none of the humor or good ...more
Ron
Mar 08, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This has got to be one of the best science fictions books ever. It is a true classic. I first read it in 1971 when I found it in the library. I have read it numerous times since.

I have often said that the true test of really well written fiction is being able to pick up a book you've already read, open it to any page and be right back into the story as if you'd been reading it all along. This book has passed that test over and over for me.

If you've never read it you have a gaping whole in your
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Mike
Nov 20, 2011 rated it liked it
I was actually quite surprised by this book. Even though it was written after L. Ron began his descent into all things Scientology, I have to praise it for it's attempt to deal with the potentially harsh realities of near light speed travel. Apparently, it was this book that put the whole concept of time dilation into popular awareness. It isn't all roses though. The story seems to skip around a lot and there's a lot of what can only be called "pulp" tendencies to it. But, for attempting to writ ...more
Maradox
Jul 27, 2014 rated it really liked it
This book was nice, there's no privileged bullsh*t like you find in a lot of the sci fi stuff. i really liked how it broached the topic of time dilation in near-lightspeed travel. another good book similar to this is Poul Anderson's Tau Zero. ...more
James Mourgos
Oct 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
Cool scifi story about Alan Corday who was shanghaid aboard the "Hound of Heaven." He soon learns of the long passage and the cold equations by Einstein that predict the time away from Earth is multiplied many times when you are hitting at or near the speed of light.

The adventurer has his tough times with the Captain Jocelyn, visits strange colonies, one taken over by aliens, and the Earth changes as the centuries roll on.

Fascinating study of how a man changes and how the Earth may change as it
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John Goodwin
Aug 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This is one of the grittier science fiction stories I have read. It deals with the extreme emotions of space travel and is based on the time dilation principle that as mass approaches the speed of light, time approaches zero. So those who are outbound to the stars in craft approaching the speed of light return to a much aged Earth relative to them. So their people are gone after returning from a voyage that perhaps only took them a few months. I really felt for the voyagers and could see why the ...more
Kenneth Starcher
This short little novel by L. Ron Hubbard is quite fascinating. A young engineer is kidnapped by an interstellar vessel about to make the long voyage to another star system. A fascinating look at space travel and how time passes differently in space versus on Earth, To the Stars has exciting stories, fun characters, and plenty of thought-provoking elements. I just wish it was a bit longer and more detailed.
Kenneth
Nov 07, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Before he started the Church of Scientology, L. Ron Hubbard was a pulp fiction writer who wrote a certain amount of science fiction including this novel. When first published in 1950, this was cutting edge, dealing with time dilation. When a space ship travels to another star system at nearly the speed of light, time slows down for them, but when they return to Earth, hundreds or thousands of earth years have passed so that they are totally alien to whatever then exists on Earth.
Chris
May 17, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audio-books
Excellent and quick book. I can see his influence now in other works as well; specifically Haldeman. Near light travel is such an interesting subject, and Hubbard covers it very well. Considering the age of the book, it's even more impressive. ...more
Duane
Classic science fiction; written in the 1950's, it transcends the period and is just as readable today as it was when it was written. ...more
Jim  Davis
Apr 27, 2018 rated it liked it
I was born in 1947 and have been reading SF most of my life but somehow I missed this novel until just now. I wish I would have read it in the early 60's as a teenager when it would have seemed a very interesting and innovative story. I would have given it 4 or maybe even 5 stars then. It may have been the first novel depicting the effects of time dilation when traveling in interstellar space at near the speed of light. Silverberg wrote a similar story in 1958 called Starman's Quest.

The premise
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Jenelle
Jan 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've avoided L Ron Hubbard for ages. Scientology I guess? I love old science fiction, so I don't get my avoidance of Hubbard....
I have a friend. He gave me Heinlein years ago and got me hooked. Recently he tossed a handful of books at me and Return to Tomorrow was in the mix. Doug hasn't ever really steered me wrong before...and then i was digging in my own shelf and found that I already owned the same copy. It seemed like I should probably just read the book.

So I did. And I liked it a lot. I f
...more
K. C.
Feb 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book and just finished it today. I read it and listened to it at the same time. I love this Amazon Whyspersync! Anyway, the story is an incredible example of leadership, Command and responsibility. With believable and admirable characters. And Eistein's theory of special relativity woven into this science fiction adventure.

I recommend it to anyone who likes science fiction and action & adventure.

Great read. Only takes about 5 hours to read.
...more
Stiltzkin Vanserine
Jun 28, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
Little did I know that Hubbard, the founder of Scientology, used to be a sci-fi writer. On second thought, it makes much sense.
Jim  Davis
See my review for alternate title - To the Stars
Montgomery Webster
Mar 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: scifi
Story: 7.5 / 10
Characters: 8
Setting: 9
Prose: 7

Tags: Space travel, time, manipulation, outcasts, indentured

2nd L. Ron Hubbarb book and both were amazing. Definitely planning on reading more.
Tim
Aug 09, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: physical
Along with another classic "The Forever War", To The Stars is dominated by the time dilation effects of near light speed travel. Leaving Earth on a 50 Light Year around trip means you barely age but on your return most people you know will probably be dead and huge changes in society, language and technology will pass you by.

The hero of the story is tricked/shanghaied into joining a deep space merchant ship and his first return to Earth truly breaks his heart. Unlike many other sci-fi universes,
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James Cardona
Nov 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
This is the first book by LRH that I have read and I had a passing interest since he is a church founder and I find philosophical and religious thought interesting. I was expecting some spillover of his religious thought in the book, but really found none.
So then, as to the book itself. The main device is time dilation and the quandary is that when a short time passes for space travelers, a much longer time passes for people on a particular planet. As the people continue to travel back and forth
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John Hoffman
Mar 21, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As you read this story of loss and pain and lonely redemption, you probably won't forget what you've heard and know about the strange life of its author. And that will make the tale even more powerful. ...more
Larry
Dec 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Before founding the cult of Scientology, Hubbard was a pretty decent SF author. This is one of my all-time favorites. Protagonist gets shanghaied and comes to on a slower-than-light pirate starship.

There are similarities to The Sea-Wolf and The Door into Summer.
...more
Bruce Deming
Aug 14, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have been rereading and listening to the audiobook today, May 5, 2013 I skimmed it years ago and set it aside. My appreciation for this tale went way up making better use of the glossary this time through.

Harsh and gritty though it is, the craftsmanship of its telling is remarkable. Deep as space itself.

I still have a few chapters and suspensefully re-await its conclusion.

K. C.
Feb 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book and just finished it today. I read it and listened to it at the same time. I love this Amazon Whyspersync! Anyway, the story is an incredible example of leadership, Command and responsibility. With believable and admirable characters. And Eistein's theory of special relativity woven into this science fiction adventure.

I recommend it to anyone who likes science fiction and action & adventure.

Great read. Only takes about 5 hours to listen to.
...more
Daniel
Feb 27, 2015 rated it did not like it
Hubbard is a condescending man. The intro exudes smugness. The idea of the book seems as if it would discredit religion with the idea that ideas fade, yet man will always need guidance. I don't know whether or not this was written before scientology was invented, but....... all in all, I am not glad that I read it. That's the way I judge a book. Was it worth reading. This was not. ...more
Dwight
Aug 25, 2015 rated it liked it
The audiobook was slightly dramatized.

At first I thought the story was treating the time difference thing a little heavy handedly, but then I realized that a) it is a pretty early scifi story and b) many space based scifi works practically ignore this effect.

The ship's doctor is a humorously creepy psychologist. No big surprise coming from L Ron.
...more
Matthew Harbowy
Mar 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book stands out in my memory as one of the greatest books on the realities of high-speed space travel, the human cost of time dilation and relativity.

This should be required reading for any science fiction author who cares to invoke space or time travel in their books.
Bruce Deming
May 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This story is gritty, harsh, brilliant and speculatively written off the Lorenz-Fitzgerald-Einstein equations. The audiobook is extraordinary and supplemented with a very beautiful piano track of Chick Corea.

Blaž
Apr 24, 2016 rated it liked it
Very meh writing combined with some conceptually interesting ideas about space travel. Author fails to make characters relateable enough to get his point about the tragic fate of potential space colonizers across.
Michelle Snyder
Aug 31, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Read it again. Great book.
Kenneth Flusche
Jul 21, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Typical Sci-Fi from the 50's even if really written for a magazine in the 30's I liked the plot and the ending. ...more
Megan
Nov 08, 2012 rated it it was ok
Slightly depressing when one thinks about the overall picture, but at least the author reveals the purpose of the main characters.
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Lafayette Ronald Hubbard

With 19 New York Times bestsellers and more than 350 million copies of his works in circulation, L. Ron Hubbard is among the most enduring and widely read authors of our time. As a leading light of American Pulp Fiction through the 1930s and '40s, he is further among the most influential authors of the modern age. Indeed, from Ray Bradbury to Stephen King, there is scarcel
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