From the Paperback edition.
Two teenage boys, part of the human colonies on Mars, are sent away to boarding school in the biggest city on Mars. In between getting into trouble with the new, insanely strict headmaster, they find out about a plot that could ...more
named Jim befriended a local life form: something looking like a football he named Willis. The latter seemed to possessed some intelligence and was able to repeat anything it heard perfectly imitating voices. It also seemed to start the playback in the least appropriate moments. At one point Jim and his friend Frank had to go to a Martian boarding school for colonists and Jim decided to take Willis with him. Something really bad happened at school (I will give you a hint ...more
Great juvenile from the Grandmaster, one of the best. This one, first published in 1949 and so one of his earliest also reveals some of the libertarian individualism that would be so ubiquitous in his later work.
We also see some previews of his ideas about Mars in his world building that would later be more fully explored in Stranger in a Strange Land. Clearly inspired, at least in part, by Bradbury.
Two teenage colonists on Mars get to know the local culture better while also ev ...more
The first book to capture me.
It left my 12 year-old mind reeling and set my all-consuming, voracious hunger for sci-fi into motion.
Of course I had "read" other books in school, but Red Planet blew me away. I was transported.
Never to return.
Here's the cover that I remember from 55 years ago.
Full size image here ...more
This is one of Heinlein's early works. I believe they were called "juveniles", because they were meant for kids. This sort of writing and level of excitement might have engaged kids when it was published in 1949, but I can't see kids today enjoy thi ...more
THE GOOD: Heinlein's early treatment of his Martians (the ones used nearly two decades later in STRANGER IN A STRANGE LAND) is excellent. These guys are subtle and weird and so far beyond earth norms that every interaction with them is fraught and puzzling. Also, while you can see prototypical versions of many of his stock characters (crusty old Dr. MacReady is a strip ...more
Heinlien's young heroes are boy scouts, good kids with good intentions who buck the odds to do the right thing. They make discoveries beyond what the adults have done & face danger. They tough it out & make good, though. ...more
1992 grade B+
2016 grade B+
A novel about high school students in a private school run by dictatorial earth bureaucrats on a colonized hypothetical Mars. It starts out pretty routine but becomes much better and more adult less than half way through. The book could definitely be considered a precursor to Stranger In A Strange Land since it has the exact same martians and their culture. In fact this book describes them much better and I recommend reading it before Stranger if possible. ...more
“Oh my gosh!”
Although a conservative, staid, and constrictive tradition lies behind the 1950s, U.S. pop culture, an odd and innocent sense of fun seems to accompany it.
After my immersion into Shirley Jackson’s dark and menacing world, Heinlein’s Red Planet, (1949), with this conservative yet fun 1950s aspect, became just the tonic I needed.
Setting a young adult/adult, science fiction adventure novel on Mars allows Heinlein to create an exciting story and world while simultaneously ...more
Red Planet was Heinlein’s third published novel, after Space Cadet (reviewed here). It is seen as the third in Heinlein’s ‘juvenile novels’ that were written for a teenage and predominantly (though not exclusively) male readership.
If I remember right, it was possibly my second or third Heinlein read, after Tunnel in the Sky, which I found, rather lost and forgotten, at the back of my school ...more
So as someone who’s been meaning to read some Heinlein I don’t know why this experience slightly underwhelmed me but I’m guessing it’s one of 3 things:
This book (at least I think) may be intended for younger readers, I haven’t been in the greatest mood and I didn’t know this was part of a series (I thought this was a standalone).
That being said like most books there are things I liked about things I disliked about the book.
I found the story fun in a family friendly sci-fi adven ...more
Now picture someone in 1949 (Heinlein) trying to do the same thing with the limited knowledge available at the time. The story is a YA tale, with a pair of boys as the protagonists and a cute but mysterious Martian crittur, Willis, as the ...more
What surprised me is that this book would be marketed as YA in the modern era. The story centers around Jim, a teen of unspecified age who is a Mars colonist. His constant companion is a bouncing "martian roundhead" who can precisely record and repeat any sound.
There are plenty of scientific innaccuracies, which is to be expected since the novel was written fifty years ago. If you can get past that, it's an ...more
What Heinlein lacks in style and descriptive powers, he makes up for with a tight plot, suspenseful action, and the mysterious, awe-inspiring Martians. "Red Planet" would make a grea ...more
The edition I read included an introduction that informed me that this was one of Heinlein's "juvenile" novels or "boy books." The introduction also included a description of the "censorship" that happened by way of severe editi ...more
I *think* this is the first Heinlein book I ever read, circa 1984, when I was 11 or 12 years old. Reading it again was enjoyable, but reading it on the heels of Space Cadet revealed several flaws in this book. Though the writing is still precise and concise, the author attempted to squeeze in too much — so everything is treated very quickly and often without explanation. Especially at the end, the action blurs past and leaves the reader reeling.
(I published a longer review on my website.)...more
The story is fairly simple. It's set in a distant future where colonies on Mars are actually a fact. We follow two friends, Jim and Frank, both sixteen years old, who embark on a trip to their new school.
On this trip they spend some time with the native inhabitants of the planet, the ...more
|Goodreads Librari...: ISBN 0345260694||6||21||Nov 27, 2015 05:42PM|
|2015 Reading Chal...: Red Planet, by Robert A. Heinlein||1||16||Oct 01, 2015 10:14AM|
|Crown Capital Eco Management: Technology as our planet's last best hope||1||6||Jul 20, 2013 12:44AM|
|What's the Name o...: SOLVED: YA set on Mars (Spoiler) [s]||4||43||Dec 15, 2011 08:47AM|
|Goodreads Librari...: ISBN 0-345-26069-4||2||126||Oct 27, 2011 12:42AM|
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