Purchased this on the discount and now understand why it was so cheap. I'm trying to give Heinlein the benefit of doubt that he was attempting to make a statement about racism in this future earth by poking at just about every racial stereotype in an over-the-top fashion, but the best praise I can give it is that his well documented narcissism got in the way of that message. It starts off as a familiar sci-fi pioneer survivor type of story by H, then diverges into an inside-view of slavery in a future world dominated by survivors from when the northern hemisphere is destroyed.
This series is a light read along the lines of Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, but in a fantasy genre rather than science fiction. If you like a light farce along the lines of P.G. Wodehouse or Douglas Adams, you will probably enjoy Asprin. Good escapism.
I found this a really tough listen and put in about 10 hours listening to the first 5 hours of the story and had to put it down and relax with something else. If you have read it previously, I suspect you will enjoy the performance. I don't blame the narrator. The book probably has some visual cues to scene transition (paragraph spacing or " * * * " or something. In audio, it is almost impossible to understand when a thread transition happens and by the time you figure that out, the story is someplace else. Not a good commuter book.
This is the first time I've read this story, although I'm a fan of other Heinlein works. If you like this, I recommend The Moon is a Harsh Mistress. Being an engineer, I can appreciate his coverage of "the art of the possible". Sure, the technology is dated and you have to deliberately ignore the sexist attitudes (if you can), but given that the story is from the 50's it hold up pretty well.
I'm a fan of Rama series and 2001, but I found this story to be lacking plot and incredibly depressing to boot. It starts off well, but every crisis point is sort of self-resolved and the characters seem to not have much of an investment in living.
Report Inappropriate Content