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Stranger in a Strange Land | [Robert A. Heinlein]

Stranger in a Strange Land

Stranger in a Strange Land tells the story of Valentine Michael Smith, an earthling born and educated on Mars, who arrives on Earth with superhuman powers and a total ignorance of the mores of man. Smith is destined to become a freak, a media commodity, a scam artist, a searcher, and finally, a messiah.
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Publisher's Summary

Valentine Michael Smith, an earthling born and educated on Mars, arrives on Earth with superhuman powers and a total ignorance of the mores of man. On his new planet, Smith is destined to become a freak, a media commodity, a scam artist, a searcher, a sexual pioneer, a neon evangelist, a martyr, and, finally, a messiah. Stranger in a Strange Land is the most famous science fiction novel ever written. It became the bible of the "love generation" and transcended the genre to achieve the status of a modern classic.

©1961 by Robert A. Heinlein; (P)1996 by Blackstone Audiobooks

What the Critics Say

  • Hugo Award, 1962

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (2612 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Todd Blaine, MN, United States 01-12-12
    Todd Blaine, MN, United States 01-12-12 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Liked the first half"

    I loved the first half of the book, but the second half was too weird.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    ethan davison, MI, United States 10-28-11
    ethan davison, MI, United States 10-28-11 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Communist Martian Sex Cult?"

    This has to be one of the worst books I've read in a long time which was ironic because Starship Troopers was fantastic. Jubal was the only good character in the book. The man from Mars went from stoic infant to stoic, communist, martian, sex, cult leader. If I wanted this sort of rhetoric I'd dig out the jonestown tapes. I might give Heinlein another shot because Starship Troopers was so good - maybe he was just taking too much acid or something. All the free-love, and money-doesn't mean anything made me gag not least because the Man From Mars had more money than god - but then again - he was god.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Donald Austin, TX, United States 10-25-11
    Donald Austin, TX, United States 10-25-11 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Strange land indeed"

    This story is not nearly as good as when I first read it in the 70s. Now it seems very dated. Most of the story wasn't about Smith but about Jubal (Heinlein). He goes on and on spouting his free love philosophy. That was cool in 1969, now it is nonsense.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Daniel BRISTOL, PA, United States 04-13-11
    Daniel BRISTOL, PA, United States 04-13-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Dated but enjoyable"

    Wow kinda weird and heavily dated but I did enjoy the story and agree with much of the basic philosophy infered. As weird as it may be at times it is still an accurate depiction of human behavior and mass hysterical, depravity of any understanding or logic. " Drink deep, Thou art GOD!"

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Avishy Tel-Aviv, Israel 05-21-09
    Avishy Tel-Aviv, Israel 05-21-09 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Terrible sound quality"

    Hi, I purchased this book just to discover that the sound quality of this audio book is terrible - nearly unintelligible - be forewarned.

    1 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sharon Madison, NJ, United States 01-19-07
    Sharon Madison, NJ, United States 01-19-07 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great Book"

    This is a great book. Strangely contemporary considering it's over 40 years old! Completely unpredictable. A whole lot to grok. The narration is a bit flat, but not the worst I have heard.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Aaron Cammarata CA, United States 07-28-05
    Aaron Cammarata CA, United States 07-28-05 Member Since 2004

    game_maker

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Classic, but misogynistic as heck"

    The book is entertaining sci-fi, and is performed quite well. The major drawback is that despite it's futuristic tone, the humanity contained within is firmly ensconced in the 50s. It's classic Heinlein misogyny, which turned me off at times. The protagonist is highly likeable, as are most characters, though, so as long as you're prepared for some true eye-rolling moments, it's worth a listen.

    2 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Scott Champlin, MN, USA 12-22-03
    Scott Champlin, MN, USA 12-22-03
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    "Way too preachy"

    The brilliant idea behind science fiction is that the author can create his own worlds, technology, and societies in order to subtly address his cultural or religious viewpoints. The key word in this sentence is 'subtly.' In 'Stranger in a Strange Land,' I felt like I was in a religious service, a very long religious service. The only difference was that the preaching was disguised as dialogue between some very boring characters, with very little plot or suspense to make an interesting story. I forced myself to listen to the end, thinking there must be some reason this work is regarded as a classic. All I can say is that, 'I don't groc.'

    1 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jim McClarty 10-21-03 Listener Since 2003
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    "Too long, too stuck in 1960's America."

    I read the reviews and the listened to the book, and the reviewers were right. This book is packed with meaning and loaded with politcal and religios commentary. I apreciated the Author's critique of relgion, though I did not see the alternative ofered as workable or worth attempting. I was most displeased with the barbeic view of women that was put forth througout the book. I was forced to remember that this book as witten in the late fifties, when women and dark-skinned people received even less equal treatment. Overall the book was an intersting story, but perhaps an abridged version would be a better choice. The long winded explanations were unnecessary to the flow of the story.

    1 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    annhere Abbotsford, B.C., Canada 10-22-03
    annhere Abbotsford, B.C., Canada 10-22-03

    Ann.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "GREAT PROPAGANDA!"

    If you love sermons and lectures, this one will keep you rivetted for SIXTEEN HOURS. Personally, I prefer science fiction.

    3 of 17 people found this review helpful
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