Brad's Reviews > Old Man's War

Old Man's War by John Scalzi
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it was amazing
bookshelves: sci-fi

The Old Man's War series is fascinating in its construction, focusing not so much on an interstellar war as much as interstellar geo-political maneuvers as alien species and humans attempt to colonize the parts of the galaxy where they live.

Book 1 is really the prologue and Act 1 for the larger story, which doesn't sound like a great set-up for a book. Yet, I found the world building interesting. John Scalzi does a wonderful job of building out scenes that allow the reader to see how the world works without making you feel like you're reading background treatment for a story.

That's the best part of the book, the world building, because the character development is relatively thin. We met a few characters who are Red Shirts, destined to die, and a hero who solves all the problems thrown at him. (Gotta make it through to the end or else we can't really have a series!)

I say that last part—about the character development—with love. There's only so much that you can do when you're world building. As John Perry, the main character, moves through the world, he's experiencing the War and the Colonial Defense Force (CDF), the somewhat mysterious group that serves to protect Earth from the alien races. (The relationship between Earth and the CDF is the central theme of the series, not the wars or alien races!) And so the story diverges to unpack parts of the world as the plot moves slowly—and then hastily—to an end.

Rest assured, good reader, the book sets up a galaxy into which Scalzi tells some interesting geo-political stories in future books (far better than the Separatist movement in the Star Wars prequels), but Old Man's War is a fun introduction to that world.
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Reading Progress

December 17, 2019 – Started Reading
December 17, 2019 – Shelved as: to-read
December 17, 2019 – Shelved
December 23, 2019 – Shelved as: sci-fi
December 23, 2019 – Finished Reading

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