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Old Man's War Audiobook

Old Man's War

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Publisher's Summary

John Perry did two things on his 75th birthday. First, he visited his wife's grave. Then he joined the army.

The good news is that humanity finally made it into interstellar space. The bad news is that planets fit to live on are scarce - and alien races willing to fight us for them are common. So, we fight, to defend Earth and to stake our own claim to planetary real estate. Far from Earth, the war has been going on for decades: brutal, bloody, unyielding.

Earth itself is a backwater. The bulk of humanity's resources are in the hands of the Colonial Defense Force. Everybody knows that when you reach retirement age, you can join the CDF. They don't want young people; they want people who carry the knowledge and skills of decades of living. You'll be taken off Earth and never allowed to return. You'll serve two years at the front. And if you survive, you'll be given a generous homestead stake of your own, on one of our hard-won colony planets.

John Perry is taking that deal. He has only the vaguest idea of what to expect. Because the actual fight, light-years from home, is far, far harder than he can imagine. And what he will become is far stranger.

©2005 John Scalzi (P)2007 Audio Renaissance, a division of Holtzbrinck Publishers LLC

What the Critics Say

  • Hugo Award nominee, Best Novel, 2006

"Scalzi's imagined interstellar arena is coherently and compellingly delineated." (The Washington Post)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.5 (9813 )
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Performance
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  •  
    John M Lafayette, CA USA 03-17-09
    John M Lafayette, CA USA 03-17-09 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Terrific Read!"

    I am not a usual listener (or reader) of science fiction like this but I must admit this was a very enjoyable book. There is plenty of military-style action and aliens getting blown away but there is also a surprisingly interesting human story interwoven throughout (not to mention an interesting political subplot as well.)

    Scalzi has created a compelling universe full of characters that are worth caring about. This is a great read for fans of the genre, if they haven't discovered it already, but also for those looking for a break from their current reading list.

    12 of 14 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jim "The Impatient" Springfield, MO, United States 10-22-15
    Jim "The Impatient" Springfield, MO, United States 10-22-15 Member Since 2016

    My taste differs from kid books to gory horror books.

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    "I DIDN'T MIND GETTING OLD, WHEN I WAS YOUNG EITHER"

    This is not good, it is GREAT!!!! It's Science fiction, it's Military Sci-Fi, it's a romance, it's witty, LOL at times, it is character driven, it is everything I ask for in a novel. I think the older you are and the longer you have been happily married the more you will enjoy this. It is so nice to listen to a novel, where elders are respected. The main character was married for around 42 years, if I remember right. They had some ups and downs, but they were in love. As a man who has been married for over 37 years and who is more in love now than when I was as a youth, I feel the pain and longing of the main character.

    The science fiction is cool and this platform gives Scalzi, the ability to show off his imagination. The different aliens he comes up with and how they think different then us, makes for some thought provoking and funny situations. Some other reviewers have compared it to Star Ship Troopers and I see that, but I was thinking more of Forever War by Haldeman. It may have a little of both, but it is all Scalzi.

    Dufris does a great job.

    7 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Karl Story 03-17-08
    Karl Story 03-17-08 Member Since 2004
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    "Fun and entertaining"

    A bit Starship Troopers, a bit Forever War and a big chunk of originality. Scalzi doesn't bury you with the science(not that I personally have a problem with that), he just writes a good book.

    11 of 13 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Casey odenton, MD, USA 02-20-08
    Casey odenton, MD, USA 02-20-08
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    "Pretty good fare"

    No spoilers in this review. I was a little apprehensive about this book, but I took the plunge anyway. All in all it's not too bad.

    Here's a fair description of it: take one part Starship Troopers and mix with one part Tekeshi Kovacs (by Richard K Morgan). Shake well, making sure that the Kovacs isn't as grim and and bitter as the original.

    It's not overly original, but certainly not overly derivative. This book relies on a few standard scifi conventions (quantum physics...mumblemumble...behold! Warp Drive!) that are standby devices, but the characters are well developed, the story entertaining enough and the produciton value high enough that it all works. It's exactly what it looks like: light, entertaining space battle fiction.

    I thoroughly enjoyed it and plan to get the sequel as well.

    11 of 13 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lore SAN JOSE, CA, United States 11-23-13
    Lore SAN JOSE, CA, United States 11-23-13 Member Since 2008

    Fantasy/Sci-Fi Fan

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    "Would you join the armed forces at age 75?"

    Would you do it if they could make you young again? In the future, the Colonial Defense Force recruits 75 year olds to fill their ranks. Rumor has it that if you sign up, they will make you young again, but since nobody that joins the CDF ever returns to Earth, it's hard to know for sure. It is a minimum 2 year commitment that can be extended for up to 10 years and many people decide to go for it. Are your next 10 years on Earth worth passing up for 10 years of combat in space? With the chance you might be young again many think it is.

    This interesting concept, and the technology behind it, forms the core of this futuristic tale. It starts with 75 year old John Perry, whose wife has recently passed away. It is John’s 75th birthday and after a visit to his wife’s grave he is off to the recruiting office, after all, what does he have to lose? I won't spoil any of the facts after that for you, but I will say that I enjoyed finding out what awaited John after he took the plunge. The book did have its ups and downs and I enjoyed the beginning and the end a lot more than the middle, but overall the future tech was interesting enough to carry the day.

    William Dufris is ok as the narrator, but I didn't think he was a great fit for this; however, the story was intriguing enough for me to give the second book a listen as well.

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Snohomish WA 10-06-12
    Amazon Customer Snohomish WA 10-06-12 Member Since 2011

    DrFredC

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    "Real science fiction, for a change"
    What made the experience of listening to Old Man's War the most enjoyable?

    It was nice to finally read a science fiction book that actually was science fiction, not science 'fantasy'. The science fiction was understandable science, not pulled out of nowhere fantasy stuff that all to often is passed off as science fiction in our largely scientifically barely literate population.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kenneth Richmond, TX, United States 11-02-11
    Kenneth Richmond, TX, United States 11-02-11 Member Since 2010
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    "It was like an underdog sports movie."

    During the parts where you’re discovering the rest of the team and the training montage you’re pretty captivated. But once the team has gone through the montage the eventual outcome is inevitable. That's how this book was for me....Great until they were done training...then.....i don't remember what happens anymore....

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Devin 10-20-09
    Devin 10-20-09 Member Since 2011

    Avid listener of Scifi and Fantasy. I've found so many great books with the help of member reviews. Hopefully I can return the favor.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Enjoyable Sci-fi Adventure"

    This book reminded me of the most interesting parts of Heinlein's star ship troopers with alot less political rambling and alot more excitement. The characters are very easy to like and you feel for their struggles. I wouldn't say that this is great literature but I really enjoyed the story. Its an exciting listen and the author created a very interesting universe.

    Check it out if your interested in a sci-fi adventure that is easy to follow and enjoy. The narrator William Dufris has always impressed me too. You'll probably want to download the sequel as well, it's just as good if not better.

    9 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Readalot SC USA 12-25-08
    Readalot SC USA 12-25-08
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    "Great book"

    What a concept! Elders in young bodies for soldiers. Anybody who likes scifi/war stories at any age will enjoy this listen. Unless you don't want to hear 4 - letter words, but then you shouldn't be looking at any war stories. The narration of this book is also great, I really enjoyed the voice of the main character.

    Since I've listened to a number of audible books, I have realized that they have to have both a good plot and good narration. This book has both!

    8 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer NORTHLAKE, TX, United States 04-01-08
    Amazon Customer NORTHLAKE, TX, United States 04-01-08 Member Since 2014

    reader of books

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    "Good Stuff"

    I really have not read much military sci-fi if this is what this can be characterized as being. I really enjoyed it, the characters were believable and I found the humor to be just enough without going overboard and the action was great.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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