©1953 Robert Heinlein; (P)2009 Audible, Inc.
It's a bit dated of course but nonetheless a classic of "what if".... and "if this goes on" rings as true today as it did upon the original publication.
Robert A Heinlein had a long and extensive future history mapped out in his mind. Many of his short stories and some of his novels fit into this future history. There are three book-length collections of his future history short stories. The first is "The Man Who Sold the Moon." It is not yet available from Audible. "The Green Hills of Earth" is next and it is my favorite of the three. It is available from Audible. The third is this book, "Revolt in 2100." It contains a novella called "If This Goes On" and two short stories: "Coventry" and "Misfit." It is not necessary to read the stories in order to enjoy them.
The first story in this book, "If This Goes On" takes place in a future America which is under the rule of a theocracy headed by a corrupt prophet. Think of Medieval Europe as controlled by the corrupt Catholic church and then add in modern snooping and surveillance techniques and wait for your blood to curdle. Let's hear it for separation of church and state!
The second story, "Coventry," is about a different way of handling lawbreakers in the future. The third story deals with the building of a space station halfway between Earth and Mars.
These stories were written in 1939 and 1940, so in some ways they are dated. However, Heinlein's ideas and philosophy seem to me to be still quite relevant. I had not reread this book in a number of years, and as I was listening to it, I realized how much Heinlein's ideas (which I first encountered as a teenager) have shaped my entire life.
I recommend both this book and Heinlein's works in general to you.
My taste differs from kid books to gory horror books.
IF THIS GOES ON
The book starts with this 6 and a half hour novella. To me it is a great study in religion and what can happen if you don't have separation of Church and State. John Lyle is a lovable innocent character. At West Point he got top marks in piety and he was sinfully proud to be in the holiest regiment of the Prophet's host. As the story starts he is not without sin for he had looked with longing on a consecrated female. Until then the only female he had known was his mother.
As, in most cases, a female starts the downfall in his religion. At first we are amazed in how innocent he is, and how strong he is in his faith, and then how quickly he falls when a woman is involved. Some may believe this to be too fast, but I can still remember as a youth, the affect my first love had on me.
I CAN NOT STAND CHEERFULNESS BEFORE BREAKFAST
The first eight chapters are real good, thought provoking and pure Heinlein. The next seven chapters are mostly shoot him up and the rebellion just going through the motions. I also thought the story lost some of it's continuity in these chapters.
This hour long story, takes place years after the rebellion and we see the results. The individual that Jon Krakauer wrote about in "Into the Wild" should have read this, it might have saved his life.
This hour long story is mostly the nuts and bolts of living in space and or on an asteroid. Those who like the mechanics of space travel will enjoy this.
All in all this was not bad, but I still like The Green Hills of Earth, Starship Troopers, Starman Jones, Double Star and Have Spacesuit Will Travel better.
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.
No. The audio volume seems to go up and down, making for a very frustrating listening experience, especially in an environment with some background noise, such as a car.
Not unless I can sample it first. His narration was fine, but the quality of the audio file was not.
Can't believe this made it out into the wild like this
This is not one of Heinlein's juvenile books. The book addresses adult themes in classic Heinlein fashion. To me this book is right up there with "Moon is a harsh mistress" as a story about the defeat of institutionalized tyranny by those victimized by it.
I feel like I missed something. There were two large jumps or non sequiturs in the story. I enjoyed following the adventures of John Lyle and the cabal staging a revolt against the government of the prophet. Then the story jumped to A group of exiles in Coventry and I did not see the connection. In the last episode we are watching a group of space miners. Again I did not see the connection. It felt like I was listening to three different stories tacked together. I will have to go back and check that I didn't skip chapters.
It was pleasant to here this classic story in audio format. I wish the performance of the narrator had been more inspiring.
It probably wouldn't fare well as a movie.
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