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
"A vastly entertaining trip." (The New York Times)
I will listen to NO boring book. Old Fav's,Card, King , Hobb. New Fav's, Hill, Scalzi, Sawyer, Interested in Lansdale, Crouch, Konrath
When I first read this in the early 80's it was considered cutting edge, now it is considered a Classic. This does not surprise those who have read it, most of us knew back in the 70's and 80's that this would reach classic status. Before David Weber and John Ringo, there was Joe Haldeman. This involves a lot of physics, a lot of time paradoxes and a little anti-war. The physics in most cases is explained so that the common layman can understand and it is done in an entertaining way. In the beginning of the book Mandella goes to a planet out past Pluto. The suits they wear and how they deal with the climate make the book very entertaining. It is nota lot of speeches, it is more if you do this you will blow up, etc... It is written in a way in which you do not feel you are in a class room. There was some stuff, especially toward the end of the book that did go over my head, but the book was still great as a whole.
Is the theme song going through your head? The anti war is not overly done. You are not beat over the head with it. There are no long Alan Alda speeches. You can be a war hawk and still love this book. I will admit that the book does drag a little toward the end, but still as a whole it is great. Think a more modern version of Arthur C. Clarke.
the forever war is like old mans war by scalzi, but without the humor. This one is more anti war which is fine, but why in the hell do the more current sci fy writers feel the need to dumb down the level through F bombs. Heinlein did fine while never cursing once, which makes it feel more like literature than a magazine article.
that being said, i am buying the others in this series.
A Sci Fi junkie who occasionally goes slumming to read other literature.
I enjoyed this book, more so as I kept reading. Can't give it five stars because it reads a little bit flat (I'll avoid the word boring). It's just a solid novel about a young man named William who is drafted by the military, manages by luck not to get killed, and ends up commanding a strike force in the most distant place humans have travelled. He falls in love along the way and humans change dramatically as he ages only a few years relative to hundreds of years due to his travels at close to the speed of light (i.e. time dilation). There are some interesting technology descriptions such as a stasis field. The norm for humans becomes homosexuality while William is away fighting, and this topic plays a big role in the novel. I liked the comment on war: that in the end it is pointless, and largely a result of poor communication.
This is a book that has stood the test of time....so to speak.. It was able to bring out the best...and worst of our accomplishments. I will listen to it again....later
The story is a good hyperbole of things that my friends who have come back from war tell me they experience. If you can get past the sci-fi aspect of this book, it's a very real human experience.
The ending was the best part, but I won't spoil that. Also, the first time the narrator's ship took a hit.
George Wilson keeps the same dry cadence throughout the entire story. This works against the book in three ways: It gets boring, it always sounds like the narrator is explaining or even teaching something to you rather than relating very personal events, and the lack of excitement in his voice conceals all of the sad, dangerous, thrilling, and happy moments that the readers own mind would otherwise recognize if they didn't have to listen to this guys voice.
I didn't rate this book too poorly because the story is great, and I did feel compelled to finish it. I wouldn't buy it again though. I recommend finding a different audio version, or getting the paper/electronic copy. It has the potential to be a page turner, but I finished three other books in the time it took me to finish this one, just because I was always more interested in something else.
The forever wars was a captivating read through time and space, a futuristic version of Vietnam.The audiobook performance was great!
I read this when it was published and was surprised to find an audio version. It is well done and I enjoyed it immensely.
A timeless classic unique in the genre.
Everything. Hard science. Satire. Deadpan acceptance of the absurdity of war. The book is real, and really really good.
Not in a million years. I'd actively avoid this narrator. His reading is awful and he mispronounces words a 10 year old would know. (null-gee for example)
I've read it in one sitting before. I was all but unable to listen.
This book needs a new version with a proper narrator. A novel this good should not suffer this fate.
I don't know if there is any other book that is quite like it.For me this book is not so much about war. There are few battles. This book is how soldiers become alienated from the homes they leave, and how the world changes for them.
I downloaded this book because it appears on so many top 100 lists of the best science fiction. I'm sure when it was published in the 1970s it got strong reviews. However, it hasn't stood the test of time. It's approach to homosexuality is dated to the point of being offensive. It isn't bigoted, but suggests that homosexuality is simply cultural or learned behavior. Thus, 95% of earth is gay to keep the population down. The author also does a very poor job of anticipating technological developments. In the fictional 2010 newspapers are delivered by fax, nobody has a cell phone and data is stored on microfiche. I don't expect perfection in predicting near-term technological developments, but most writers of this era were able to at least predict personal data devices and the coming computer revolution. In short, the book feels very dated, and the story itself isn't compelling enough to overcome those shortcomings. I suspect that the books anti-war message resonated well in the mid-1970s and its approach to sexuality and technology didn't get in the way because it was not yet clear how poorly Haldeman understood both. In 2014, it feels like a re-run of the Brady Bunch--interesting if you want to get a sense of the culture of the 1970s, but not worth the time simply for entertainment.
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