This book fills in some crucial parts of Heinleins overall timeline. He refers back to the events of this book in several others and it's interesting to fill in the gaps. Otherwise it's classic Heinlein with interesting characters and moral conundrums. Similar to Starship Troopers the main character gets sucked into a larger movement because of a woman and ends up transforming into something he never expected. Great book overall.
It's not a complex story or full of mind bending ideas, but is instead a classic story about human pererverance, ingenuity and blowing shit up. Take a break from the brainy stuff and indulge in some unadulterated space war.
It is the opposite of Atlas Shrugged in nearly ever aspect. From the political message it conveys, to the likability of the characters and to the quality of the writing, this book is everything I wanted Atlas Shrugged to be but found lacking. It is a very high quality work of fiction and is also a testament to science and philosophy. I can't recommend it enough.
It is also one of the few books I have read on the philosophy and politics of Anarchism (see also The Moon is a Harsh Mistress by Robert A. Heinlein). What's really amazing to me is that a book on Anarchism (this book) can be so starkly different from a book on Libertarianism (Atlas Shrugged) since Libertarianism is actually a branch of anarchy. The main difference of course is in the Libertarian union with Capitalism. The Dispossessed meticulously and convincingly exposes the weaknesses and inherent flaws in a Capitalistic society and will leave you pining for Odonian brotherhood.
Agree or disagree with the philosophies in this book, it will at the very least make you think about something new and probably feel something new as well.
It started out really strong. I thought the ending was a little dissapointing though. It kind of descended into "magic" but perhaps that's what you get when you try to cram that much into such a short book. Overall it was packed full of interesting ideas and vivid imagery.
I really liked the premise of the modern quest with these great characters but I just can't help feeling like this book is dull. Maybe it's the authors obsessive need to name everything accurately. Do I really need a complete breakdown of their meals? Do I really need to know the names of all the local flora and fauna? This whole book just felt like a drag on the overall plot.
I did get a kick out of how he used madam blavatsky's religion as the religion of the evil doers though. He had to do a little research into that craziness, which is comendable.
There really are two stories in this book which don't really intertwine until the very end. The story of the children on the planet and the aliens they encounter there is incredible. It's really a brain bending idea full of very interesting characters and new concepts. But the story of the people in space tasked with rescuing them... well it was kind of lame. Perhaps the first storyline was so compelling that I kept finding myself annoyed when it would switch away to something less interesting. Perhaps separated the two storylines would have been independently awesome. As it is I can really only say that I liked half this book, unfortunately the two halfs are every other chapter.
An excellent telling of a grim possibility. The detailed description of the 'slugs' and the incredibly well thought out implications of such a creature on human civilization is very thought provoking and shudder inducing.
A fairly brief book that seems to be a stand alone story. It manages to introduce some interesting ideas about relativistic space travel and the capacity for human culture to devolve in the vacuum of rational inquiry.
It progresses the story and finally fills in some details (vague as they are) about the origins that we have been waiting 7 books to hear about, and the characters are quite good. But there seems to be a pretty long dry spell in the middle where the author seems to be dragging things out unnecessarily. The beginning and the end were pretty good though. It was good enough to keep reading, the next one seems like it could be quite good now that the new characters have been established and the plot has been set back up.
This was a great book on several levels. I really enjoyed the though provoking concepts related to relativistic space travel. Also I noticed a few references to Heinlein's "The Moon is a Harsh Mistress" (by calling lunar citizens anarchists for example) and thought it was a nice tie-in to some other classic sci-fi. All around great book and would easily recommend it for everyone.
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