I was a bit skeptical when I got this book since I've found "classic" sci fi to be rather hit or miss. But I took the chance, and I'm glad I did.
I'm very glad I knew going in that the book is the author's take on Vietnam since knowing that makes the book make more sense. The book would be enjoyable without knowing that, but the parallels are obvious when you know to look for them.
The story is very well done and well paced. About the time it starts to drag, something happens to pick things back up. It is well written and very emotional.
The reader does a very good job. Characters are individually voiced, including little foibles (such as the subtle lisp for the gay man). The reader adds emotion to the book, and I almost felt like William Mandella was the speaker.
And very excited. At first I didn't like this book - thought it was a bit too slow and antiquated by modern Scifi standards - sure it is dated at times often discussing issues that likely wouldn't be discussed if it was written today. Or maybe just wouldn't focus as much on sexuality.
But it doesn't matter. On the whole it's a 1000 year story and it's not always the most exciting but it is engaging and interesting throughout. Glad I stuck with it. At first I almost stopped listening because it was so slow and stuck in training for a while. Excited to see what an adaptation could do as this could use a well handled modern refresh.
Would read more!
I enjoyed the book, it wasn't as captivating as I would have liked but it was still a great read. Not disappointed at all, would recommend if you enjoyed Starship Troopers but with time travel... or relative to time travel.
Great story that will likely be relevant to readers as long as there are people around. I found myself caught up on the story, feeling the emotions of the main character. Very well written.
The narration was likable enough, but the plot was seriously lacking. A long stream of a character I didn't give a darn about narrating about a series of battles that you don't care if he dies in.
There's a lot in this book. The military sections are exciting and imaginative, and the returns to society are really interesting, if a little pessimistic.
For me, I'm not sure if rises to the level of an all timer, but I really enjoyed it.
My main comment about this book is the narrator: he was completely perfect. He brought the main character fully to life, which really added a great dimension to the story for me. There is a lot of military jargon and battle scenes which might have been a struggle to read through, but delivered in the first person narration it all worked. He was also able to present other characters in an engaging way. I especially liked the strange diction of one person William meets while recovering from injury and the laconic style of Charlie in the last section.
The story was episodic and thus the narrative momentum was uneven. But there was a lot to like and a ton of intriguing ideas about how warfare and society might develop over the centuries.