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The Forever War | [Joe Haldeman]

The Forever War

William Mandella is a soldier in Earth's elite brigade. As the war against the Taurans sends him from galaxy to galaxy, he learns to use protective body shells and sophisticated weapons. He adapts to the cultures and terrains of distant outposts. But with each month in space, years are passing on Earth. Where will he call home when (and if) the Forever War ends?
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Publisher's Summary

When it was first published over 20 years ago, Joe Haldeman's novel won the Hugo and Nebula awards and was chosen Best Novel in several countries. Today, it is hailed a classic of science fiction that foreshadowed many of the futuristic themes of the 1990s: bionics, sensory manipulation, and time distortion.

William Mandella is a soldier in Earth's elite brigade. As the war against the Taurans sends him from galaxy to galaxy, he learns to use protective body shells and sophisticated weapons. He adapts to the cultures and terrains of distant outposts. But with each month in space, years are passing on Earth. Where will he call home when (and if) the Forever War ends?

Narrator George Wilson's performance conveys all the imaginative technology and human drama of The Forever War. Set against a backdrop of vivid battle scenes, this absorbing work asks provocative questions about the very nature of war.

©1974 Joe W. Haldeman; (P)1999 Recorded Books

What the Critics Say

  • Hugo Award, Best Novel, 1976
  • Nebula Award, Best Novel, 1975

"A vastly entertaining trip." (The New York Times)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (1379 )
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4.0 (805 )
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Performance
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  •  
    proton 02-14-10
    proton 02-14-10 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    32
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    "One of the best SF tales of all time"

    Highly enoyable

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Saud 11-27-13
    Saud 11-27-13

    Learn, understand, then decide whether you accept or reject.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Relevant Today"

    Written in the 1970s, this sci-fi novel is one of the greatest visualizations of space warfare you could find, period. It provides plenty of thought provoking themes, some of which are controversial to most people. Just avoid the sequels, they're rubbish.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Forrest 03-04-13
    Forrest 03-04-13 Member Since 2013
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    "Great Listen"
    If you could sum up The Forever War in three words, what would they be?

    Thought provoking, entertaining


    What did you like best about this story?

    The authors careful attention to detail and interesting yet believable future worlds.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The returns to the Earth with grand seperations in time.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    It made me think.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dennis CRYSTAL RIVER, FL, US 10-31-12
    Dennis CRYSTAL RIVER, FL, US 10-31-12 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "GREAT Sci-fi story!"

    Very good to listen to. Great narration. Classic sci-fi! The book has an unexpected end.
    Well worth the listen.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John TEGA CAY, SC, United States 10-08-12
    John TEGA CAY, SC, United States 10-08-12 Listener Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A good read"
    What did you love best about The Forever War?

    Time travel has always been a fascination of mine.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    William Mandella of course


    What about George Wilson’s performance did you like?

    He did a very good job not being mono toned, kept it interesting


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    It could have been, you really didn't need a break.


    Any additional comments?

    Very good SiFi.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Augusto 03-26-12
    Augusto 03-26-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Neat story, Emotionless narrator."
    What didn’t you like about George Wilson’s performance?

    Lack of emotion, weird inflections. Struggled to finish the story due to the narration.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    keith basildon, United Kingdom 10-12-11
    keith basildon, United Kingdom 10-12-11 Listener Since 2002
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Still cool even at this age"

    I read this book many years ago and fell in love with it, still now it holds that wow element.
    George Wilson is perfect narrator for this book - his way of reading made returning to this book that little bit more special.
    I remember the first time i read it and how mind boggled i was trying to understand the concept of distant travel and the effects it would have on earth, and now im still thinking about it.
    Joe Haldeman made a true classic scifi book here, if you love scifi then you have to give this book a listen,
    I just wish they would record the third in the series - forever free

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joki Helsinki 10-02-11
    Joki Helsinki 10-02-11 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Classic, in the good way"

    Quite often when reading scifi from the golden era it feels a bit off - some of the visions of the future have become things of the past, or just feel dated. Not so here - if I didn't know the original publication date I would not have guessed it from the content.

    The story follows a soldier traversing through an interstellar war, where due to time dilation he sees a thousand year pass in the 'normal' time while only a score of years passes for him. This is where the real meat of the story is - see how the future pans out of humanity and earth at large through the eyes of a person from the 20th century.

    The story flows smoothly, keeping up the main story of the war in the background while concentrating on describing the various futures and the personal voyage of the main characters. This is pure gold, moving from dystopian to utopian premises, each as interesting as the next.The premise is scifi, but the narrative is not - you are never bored with endless descriptions of how this or that tech is supposed to work.

    The narrator uses a voice that I can only describe as a dry british gentleman, though without the british accent. It fits the the book perfectly, as the main character views the world(s) through a filter of dry resignation.

    If you are fan of science fiction, get this book. If you are not, but you do enjoy movies such as 'Gattaca', there is a very good chance that you'll like this book as well.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dale goring, Reading, United Kingdom 06-24-11
    Dale goring, Reading, United Kingdom 06-24-11

    Dale

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    "Awesome Book"

    I love this book, I bought its omnibus edition a few years ago (yea I know printed on paper and everything!) I loved the story and the book had a great rhythm to it. The book is narrated very well in this version and I've listened to it a number of times which is great as reading real books these days is a struggle because I have trouble finding the time.

    The book also shows very little signs of age unlike some so futuristic vision still holds its own.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kyle Archie 02-28-11
    Kyle Archie 02-28-11 Member Since 2010
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    "Excellent"

    Too few sci fi books make such a great story out of time dilation due to special relativity. Most time travel books deal with going to the past instead of the more probable one way ticket we would get if we started traveling lightyears from space. This is probably because it's easier to write about the past than create a whole new futuristic world purely from imagination. Halderman not only does a great job of building believable, if bizarre, cultures out of extreme extrapolations into the future, but he does so with style. You really feel for poor bastard he sends hurtling into the future. Really makes you appreciate what you have.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
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