Friday, a secret courier, is thrown into an assignment under the command of her employer, a man she knows only as "Boss". She operates from and over a near-future Earth in North America, a vulgar and chaotic land comprised of dozens of independent states. In America's disunion, Friday keeps her balance nimbly with quick, expeditious solutions as she conquers one calamity and scrape after another.
Please note: This audiobook includes adult content and themes.
©1982 by Robert A. Heinlein; (P)1996 by Blackstone Audiobooks
If there is a part of you that longs for just a little bit more Robert Heinlein and you've already torn through his great works, then this book is for you.
The story is pure adventure. From the opening moments the story is full of excitement and novelty. The narrator has a great I'm-going-to-sound-a-bit-like-a-ditz-but-it-is-an-act-and-I-am-smarter-than-you tone which captures the first person narrative of the protagonist Friday.
My only critique is that somewhere around 60% of the way through I stared asking myself, "where the heck is this going?" but I didn't really care that much, the story was interesting and so as Heinlein made his explorations of alternative family structures and waxes theoretical about life, I just let it ride.
It is the greatest Heinlein book? No, it isn't. The plot does drag and the characters are not quite as gripping as some of this other works. But if you've already scoured his great works and you're looking for a hidden gem and a little bit more from the great master then this book is for you.
I love the story of Friday, a super sexy courier in a future world that is both very close to where we are now and also very different. The "tech level" in this book doesn't distract the modern user like some of RAH's older books (it was published in the '80s). This is very much one of my favorite Heinlein books and I'd love to see it done into a movie.
That being said, this audio presentation misses the five star mark. While having a female narrator makes this audio vastly superior than the one that went before (what were they thinking!?), the characterizations were a little flat and so were the emotions. The narration was such that, if I wasn't careful, I'd slip away from being engrossed in the story, and pay attention to the voice.
Overall, it's a good audiobook and a great story set in a world you could come to believe is right around the corner from the world we are in now,
Tell us about yourself!
Not the best Heinlein novel by far, but still a quite refreshing story. The narrator really made the difference for me by giving this vagrant novel the tiny bit extra to keep it interesting and funny.
Robert Heinlein is my favorite author & I've read this particular book several times. When I saw that there was finally an unabridged audio version with a female narrator (don't get me started on male narrators being chosen to read books with first-person female protagonists), I was eager to start listening.
Unfortunately, the narrator is the reason that I'm unable to give this book five stars. There was just something about her delivery that made Friday & a few other characters sound *too* contemporary (when Heinlein's writing style relies heavily on mannerisms from the last century.) To her credit, she did a good job with "the Boss."
That isn't to say the narration was bad - she just failed to capture the main character for me. Otherwise, the author's voice comes through loud and clear - and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this book as a good representation of RAH's work.
This is one of my favorite later works of Heinlein. I purchased the original version with a male reader that left quite a bit to be desired. This reader seemed to portray the book substantially better... until the deadly words were encountered.
Please, readers, try to familiarize yourself with terms in science and, if necessary, military and quasi-military. The thing that kills an audio book worse than anything else is when the reader hasn't a clue what they're reading. The most egregious example of this in this book was the substitution of the word "commandment" for the title of "commandant". There were other instances, but this one just stuck out like the proverbial sore thumb.
If you can grit your teeth and avoid rolling your eyes (especially if listening while driving) when one of these goofs occurs, then the rest of the book is actually quite passable and well done.
Friday is a wonderful book brought to life by audio. I read this book 30 years ago and thought it was great. Audio makes it complete.
I loved the end! I always thought she was great with kids and the end confirmed it. I like that Heinlein gave her a heart.
She gave a vioce to Friday, and I wasn't disappointed.
I would prefer to listen to the story in one session, except for the fact that it is very long. I don't think I can stay up that long.
This has always been one of my favorite sci-fi books. Being able to listen to it has been a great experience.
This is one of those books that wanders a bit, but the way Heinlein wanders is almost fun. This is a peek at a future world from the point of view of an artificial person. Friday is a super-spy, built to succeed, and very good at what she does. Her world is very interesting.
Previous versions of this book were read by a male reader who made her sound like a bimbo. I'd gotten over that, but it actually made adjusting to this reader a little difficult. At first I did not like the reader (though still admitting she was better than the old one), but she grew on me.
Enjoyable across the board. Heinlein is so easy to read in his conversational style of writing that his books are a shear delight. The story is exciting and thought provoking and the narration is a bonus.
Her numerous escapes from danger.
I needed just a little time to associate the narrator's voice to the character because I had started a different version than that of Ms. Huber but once I did I really appreciated her voice acting skill as she gave each character a unique accent.
While this is a story I enjoyed as a young adult, the audio version I found had issues.
The voice of the narrator did not fit the image that the author created of the character she was portraying. Hillary Huber had the voice of someone who spent most of her life (40 or more year) screaming ending with a gravelly voice, not that of a young perfectly engineered woman.
The second issues was that 3 or 4 times in the narration phrase or sentences were repeated, which appear to be the result of poor editing.
While I gave this audio book 4 stars for the story the Overall rating was hurt by the choice of narrator and the quality of the editing.
Speaker, Leader, innovation consultant, kilt-wearer, South African.
I read a review of Friday as "The best book ever written without a plot."
I read that review after I read the book.
It's just about what happens to a woman called Friday, set against a background of a future where society is very different from how it is today.
It's dated now -- the book pre-dates the Internet but anticipates it, for example. So it's an interesting snapshot of what people in the 1970s would have thought of us in the 21st Century.
The world is at war (surprise, surprise) and Friday is a courier -- a dangerous job -- which involves getting physical objects past inquisitive border guards.
She's resourceful, sexy, sassy and fun.
One day, her whole world goes completely pear-shaped, and she has to dig herself out of a deep hole.
I liked the narration. The writing is engaging, the characters are charming and menacing by turns. All in all, a wonderful escapist read. I loved it.
"Top Rank SF"
'Friday' breaks the Heinlein mould somewhat, and is the better for it. The setting is more cleverly considered than many others, and is more in on a par with that of 'Number of the Beast' rather than earlier, shorter works - which tend to be newtonian space ships and slipsticks. The universe of 'Friday' is also somewhat similar the Culture space if Ian M Banks.
Another pleasing difference in Friday is that it focuses less on spaceship drives and astrogation, and more on interpersonal relationships in a number of cultures much different to our own.
I rate this, and 'Number of the Beast' as my two favourite works by this author, and 'Friday' ranks in my top twenty all time favourite books
"Of its time"
Sex, far too much of it.
Disappointment, I read the book based on comments made by an author of another book I had read, her book was good, this wasn't. Far too much sex involved, I am no prude, far from it, but the lead character enjoyed anything, animal, mineral or vegetable.
Heinlein is noted as a fine author of sci-fi but my first foray has not encouraged me to try another.
"I wouldn't bother."
My problem with Friday is that it was amusing in a few places, but mostly it was a boring piece of fictional autobiography. If I want to read an autobiography, I'll read one. I could probably find one which is more exciting. For all Firday's vaunted talents, she does next to nothing. There isn't a plot, except in the vaguest sense. Her "adventures," or misadventures, don't go anywhere and certainly don't meet the promise of her being a "combat courier." After the first couple of pages she basically never has anything to do with her job again. (To add to the boredom, Mr Heinlein likes lists. Very, very long lists. I'm pretty sure he was paid by word count since the lists serve no purpose other than increasing his.) The projections, the "sci-fi," is hugely dated, more so than I'd expect from something from the eighties. Some of the physics (the real physics) is very suspect.
So, in short, I struggled through this because I bought it and I was damn well going to finish it. Now I never have to read it again.
"A good story"
This is a good sci-fi book told by a female narrator, which makes a nice change.
The futuristic details were cool and the nature of her work added lots of interest too.
I wanted to give it four and a half stars as at time my attention wandered a bit.
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