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The Last Colony

(Old Man's War #3)

4.06  ·  Rating details ·  54,864 ratings  ·  2,431 reviews
Retired from his fighting days, John Perry is now village ombudsman for a human colony on distant Huckleberry. With his wife, former Special Forces warrior Jane Sagan, he farms several acres, adjudicates local disputes, and enjoys watching his adopted daughter grow up.

That is, until his and Jane's past reaches out to bring them back into the game -- as leaders of a new hum
Paperback, 324 pages
Published July 29th 2008 by Tor Books (first published April 17th 2007)
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Albe- I would say so.
This series of books is a sort of long, continuing story; why would you spoil yourself the whole story buy jumping directly to somewher…more
I would say so.
This series of books is a sort of long, continuing story; why would you spoil yourself the whole story buy jumping directly to somewhere in the middle of it?
Furthermore, this book is (imho) less intense and rather centred on building up on what introduced in the previous book so that the reader can better understand the true nature of the world this series takes place in.
Read the other books first.(less)
Almir Tovar Filho It´s pretty important, the finale of the first trilogy. Plus, the fourth book, Zoe's Tale, is the same history, by the eyes of the daughter.
It´s pretty important, the finale of the first trilogy. Plus, the fourth book, Zoe's Tale, is the same history, by the eyes of the daughter.

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mark monday
stupid fucking humans, you are the worst! always getting shit wrong and not caring!

John Scalzi sort of agrees but sort of doesn't. he's a humanist who loves the individual as well as a scornful critic who slams systems, systematized secrecy, imperialism, and the use of conflict as a way to achieve goals. so he gets to have his cake and eat it too. his love of people is on display as ever, and although his characters often lack depth and aren't particularly interesting, they are still warmly char
Niki Hawkes - The Obsessive Bookseller
This is the point in the series where the story needed to make me fall in love with it as much as the first book did. Coming off a decent, albeit underwhelming second novel (Ghost Brigades), I wanted Last Colony to evolve into a series I could endorse as passionately as The Expanse. Alas, while I was thoroughly entertained from start to finish, the book did leave a few points to be desired.

My biggest complaint is the lack of description. Scalzi has all of these interesting alien species, but I'm
Apr 26, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011, sci-fi, war, aliens
I’m no expert at colonizing newly discovered worlds, but I gotta think that naming your new planet ‘Roanoke’ and your settlement town ‘Croatoan’ is just asking to be pimp slapped by fate. Why not just christen a ship ‘Titantic’ or call that new nuclear plant ’Chernobyl’? What’s the worst that could happen?

The third installment of this series finds John Perry and his wife Jane retired from the Colonial Defense Force and living quietly on a colonized planet with their daughter. The CDF approaches
Mayim de Vries
“It is an interesting thing to be both critical and expendable to humanity’s effort to populate the stars.”

Woodrow Wilson's wet dream goes interstellar!

“The Last Colony” is so far the weakest in the Old Men's War series. After “old people" (part one) and special forces (second volume), in the third instalment, Mr Scalzi focuses on the colonists and colonial life in general. The main characters are our old friends, John Perry and Jane Sagan. In a sense, this book finalises the stories of these tw
Aug 02, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Way cool SF writer Scalzi returns to his Old Man's War universe.

This time around John Perry and his badass wife Jane are out of the CDF and are no longer green, having been given retired human bodies. Nowadays they are chillaxing on a colony basking in their boring new roles, living a quiet life with their adopted daughter Zoe.

But their lives change when a CDF general invites / demands / requires them to lead a party of new colonists on a brand new planetary colony that reminded me of Robert A.
After retiring from the Colonial Defense Force, John Perry and Jane Sagan started a new life on the Human colony Huckleberry. The two of them live with their adopted daughter Zoë, work local jobs, and have a farm. All of that changes when they are approached to be the leaders of a new human colony which will be colonized by people from other human colonies. There is more to this arrangement than they were told and the family finds itself once again forced to fight to survive.

John Scalzi shows an
Dan Schwent
Dec 20, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2010, sf, the-scalz
John Perry and Jane Sagan have left the CDF and have been living with Zoe on a colony called Huckleberry until they're uprooted and sent to start a new colony, Roanoke. Only the CDF isn't telling them the whole truth and the Conclave is on the prowl for rogue colonies. Can Perry and his family save Roanoke without being traitors to the Colonial Union?

Wow. I loved this book almost as much as I loved the first in the series, Old Man's War. John Perry is back and in fine form. Scalzi crammed a lot
Tom Merritt
Jul 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
There's an easy brilliance to the OMW series that I think shines at its best in Last Colony. At any moment you may feel like you're reading a light novel with snappy dialog and a straightforward plot. The phrase 'beach reading' May even flit through your mind. But the. You'll realize that these characters are green super soldiers, alien generals with eye stalks and emotionless guardians of a teenage girl. Then it strikes you that the themes aren't just love and family and such but also war and o ...more
Jun 19, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2020-read
Unlike many, I think I may have liked this third book more than the first two. It's a pretty firm shift from a military story to a colony one, which may be why I liked it so much. Colony stories are among my favourites in the SF genre.

Where I feel these books are somewhat lacking is in their character development, and The Last Colony is no exception. Both John and Jane are pretty much the same as they always were, and Zoe's growth is limited to what one would generically expect when a child grow
3.5 stars. A good installment in this series. I enjoyed this much more than I was expecting, and totally loved these women: Jane Sagan and Savitri Guntupillai. I'm looking forward to seeing this story's events from Zoe Boutin's perspective soon. I wanted to spend so much more time with these three people.
It's nice to see that some of the revelations in book 2 are followed up here, (view spoiler)
Dec 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is my favorite book so far in the series. John Perry is back as the narrator, and much of the tone/humor that I loved about Old Man's War (but which was largely missing from The Ghost Brigades) is present here. Don't get me wrong, I also really liked the previous installment, but I'm starting to think Scalzi's writing style works better with the first-person POV approach.

I can understand why some fans might not have enjoyed this book as much; the focus is not so much on military tactics th
This review from October was wrongly placed with the entre piece of the serialized book:

This was a well-paced, fun space opera in the same universe as Scalzi’s series starting with “The Old Man’s War”. The confederation of human planets known as Colonial Union was formed in response to alien civilizations out to exterminate our species, and in response to their success hundreds of alien species have formed their own confederation, the Conclave. The resulting peace from strength has become shaky
Aug 10, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: r2017, stars-4-0
Third volume in the Old Man's War series

This one felt rather different to the previous two - much lighter in a way although the stakes are still pretty high - but as enjoyable to read.

The narration is back from the point of view of John Perry, who is living a peaceful life on a colony with Jane Sagan and Zoe, after the explosive events of The Ghost Brigades. Eight years have passed and the two ex soldiers look at ease in this new life, the first as an ombudsman and the other as a constable, deal
Igor Ljubuncic
This is a good book, but nowhere near as good as the first (best) or second (very good).

Let's start with the 'me like' stuff: John has a nice, easygoing writing style, so even if there isn't too much happening in the book, it's still quite all right. Overall, the arch-story of the series continues, and we get additional exposure to the politics of CU and the Conclave. John Perry is back, it's first person again, and the focus is now on the colonial side of the union.

Unfortunately ...

The Last Col
This is disappointing since I usually can count on Scalzi for keeping me glued to the screen of my Kindle. The book, or series, has been underwhelming for me since The Ghost Brigade. I think the parts where it should spend more time on got shortened like the going ons in other planets during the war with the Conclave etc, and vice versa. There are many conversation with arguments made clear at the start but somehow the characters keep paraphrasing it without uncovering new insights. I was really ...more
Jun 08, 2012 rated it did not like it
I found The Last Colony really disappointing compared to Old Man's War and The Ghost Brigades. Here's why:

1. The first two books got a lot of their structure from the military training that their protagonists, John Perry and Jared Dirac. The process of learning new skills and ways of thinking also made Perry and Dirac interesting characters. The Last Colony doesn't have any training; Perry is the protagonist again and he does have to adapt to a new career as the administrator of a new colony, bu
Dec 03, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013
I think Scalzi's a fun author to read, one you can always go back to knowing you'll have an entertaining read. He's got smart characters you can root for, fast-paced plots, and you always know you won't have to think too hard. I love to be challenged in my reading, but I don't want to be challenged with every single book I read. Thus, authors like John Scalzi make for the perfect break in your intellectual readings.

The Last Colony is the final Old Man's War universe novel with John Perry and Jan
The Shayne-Train
Wowzers. Just....plain....wowzers.


This was such a perfect end to the trilogy. We go back to the first-person narrative of Major John Perry, formerly a reborn-supersoldier, now a husband and father and space-colonist.

Plenty of good kill-all-da-alienz stuff, but also a lot of good making-your-way-in-the-world-today-takes-everything-you-got stuff too. Oh, and some DOWN-WITH-THE-MAN stuff. Can't forget that.

Goodreads tells me there are more books in the series. I find that odd, because it felt like
Overall this was a fantastic read and a lot of fun. Seeing the story again told from John Perry's point of view was a blast and the combination of humor, plot, twists, characters and action worked really well for me.
The ony complaint I have is that for the plot to really work at two points people who should have know better make actually some stupid decisions. I think if everyone had really acted like I would assume leaders of large political groups would act, then the story couldn't have played
Kaethe Douglas
2012 January

At the end of the book Scalzi says he isn't going to write any more about these characters. So even though I'm midway in Zoe's Tale, I'm having a sad. It's smart science fiction, interesting characters, intriguing problems with colonization, and Sagan and Perry are so good at working things through. I would happily read many more stories about them. Great scifi, and, for those of us who enjoy twists, plenty of them. Really, Old Man's War is an unusually strong series. There must be f
Jul 29, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
Book started off slowly.Initially It's mostly about misadventures of cutoff colony but somewhere around half of the book there is a point where "shit gets real" and book reverts to that fast paced space opera we all know and love.

First half: 3 stars.Slow but necessary.

Second half: 5 stars.Best part of the series, when things got going I couldn't put it down.
Aug 05, 2008 rated it really liked it
The more of John Scalzi’s work I read, the more I like his writing. Set in the same universe as “Old Man’s War”, the 2008 Hugo nominated novel, “The Last Colony” does not disappoint. Scalzi has a gift for writing science fiction that fires the imagination and remains completely believable. He doesn’t fill his novels with a bunch of boring exposition. Any technology that needs explanation is explained in a comprehensible manner, not with a lot of jargon. In many ways, his novels hearken back to t ...more
P.S. Whenever I glance at this cover, I think it’s a duck unless I’m zoomed way in.

This third book returns to John Perry, who now lives with Jane and Zoe. They get asked to start a new colony but quickly get tired of being everybody else’s pawn in their galactic political games. There are a few twists and surprises, and John gets to do this a couple times:

The writing has lots of “he said” and “she said” tags, which I think is more noticeable on audio. There are long scenes of dialogue and steady
The Last Colony is the third installment of the Old Man’s War series by John Scalzi, and will probably be my last visit to Scalzi world. I really enjoyed Old Man’s War, as it had the perfect blend of a sympathetic and wise-cracking main character, intriguing concept (recruiting 75 year olds with the promise of powerful new military bodies to fight aliens threatening humanity), basic training with the new bodies, first combat, and an exciting finale.

However, with each successive book I’m learning
Oct 06, 2009 rated it really liked it
An excellent end to the trilogy starting with "Old Man's War" & continued in "The Ghost Brigades". The first mainly follows Perry, the second Sagan & this one, the third, both. The style is reminiscent of Heinlein's best, before he got weird in the 70's, & without all the philosophizing. Just an excellent story in an interesting universe. ...more
Jason Pettus
(My full review of this book is much longer than Goodreads' word-count limitations. Find the entire essay at the Chicago Center for Literature and Photography [].)

Regular readers will know that I've found myself in a special situation this month, because of accidentally getting my hands on a total of eight out of the twelve science-fiction novels nominated this year for either the Hugo or Philip K Dick award; today's review is the sixth of that series*, with the rest of them found
Mar 21, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The best entry in the series so far, and it really capitalizes on the two books that came before.

The decision to bring back John Perry from the first book as the main character was great. The fact he was paired with Jane, who was an important secondary character in the first book and an even more important secondary character in the second book, was great. It feels like the book is building on the earlier books in a really meaningful way without making it feel like the first books were in any wa
Lesa Divine
4 🌟
I enjoyed. Love getting to read more from John's point of view.

With him and Jane retiring with Zoe. They all settle down just to find themselves reworking for CDF by starting a new colony with others. But to find out that they wasn't told the whole truth of them being there makes John and Jane having to make final choices to survive with their colony.

Milda Page Runner
Some spoilers in here, read at your own peril.

The good:
John Perry - I loved his voice, his humour, the way he has with the people around him.
Colonizing new planet - the adventures and difficulties that came with uncharted territory.
The ending - Scalzi seems to deliver happy optimistic endings every time and I love it.
The bad:
Too much politics
CU acting like complete morons. I can accept one person doing stupid mistake but organisation that successfully led humanity for few hundred years colle
C.T. Phipps
Jun 02, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
American pioneer heritage is something which has kind of a sordid history once you peel back the legend and myth-making which was deliberately added to it. Disease, exile of religious dissidents, slaughter of locals, and shameless land grabs are the least of it. I was hesitant about John Scalzi's take on the subject with the story of Old Man War protagonist John Perry taking up the role of a colony head in a book series primarily about the evils of colonization. I shouldn't have doubted Scalzi a ...more
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See top shelves…
John Scalzi, having declared his absolute boredom with biographies, disappeared in a puff of glitter and lilac scent.

(If you want to contact John, using the mail function here is a really bad way to do it. Go to his site and use the contact information you find there.)

Other books in the series

Old Man's War (6 books)
  • Old Man's War (Old Man's War, #1)
  • The Ghost Brigades (Old Man's War, #2)
  • Zoe's Tale (Old Man's War, #4)
  • The Human Division (Old Man's War, #5)
  • The End of All Things (Old Man's War, #6)

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