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Publisher's Summary

In a distant galaxy of colonized planets, the atrocity of slavery is alive and well. Young Thorby was just another bedraggled orphan boy sold at auction, but his new owner, Baslim, is not the disabled beggar he appears to be. Adopting Thorby as his son, Baslim fights relentlessly as an abolitionist spy. When the authorities close in on Baslim, Thorby must find his own way in a hostile galaxy. Joining with the Free Traders, a league of merchant princes, Thorby must find the courage to live by his wits and fight his way up from society's lowest rung. But Thorby's destiny will be forever changed when he discovers the truth about his own identity.

Citizen of the Galaxy is a suspenseful tale of adventure, coming of age, and interstellar conflict by science fiction's Grand Master.

©2003 The Robert A. and Virginia Heinlein Prize Trust (P)2013 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Classic

Still a classic and Grover brought it to life. I thoroughly enjoyed it. I still think it should be a movie.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Still a great story

What did you love best about Citizen of the Galaxy?

It's a story I've read several times since childhood. This was a new way to 'read' it, and it felt a little like having Robert Heinlein tell me his story.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

two classics together; can't get much better!

I've been a fan (weak term, actually) of Robert Heinlein for decades. I discovered the readings of Grover Gardner several years ago, & he's tops on my readers list. Put 'em together, what a treat!
I feel somewhat guilty about not giving RAH 5 stars across the board, but truthfully, CotG isn't my favorite Heinlein book. It's just not up there with Stranger in a Strange Land or Time Enough for Love, or even some of the "boys" books (but it's definitely better than some of his last clunkers, like "Friday" which I felt sorta stunk...forgive me, RAH).
Anyway, this is the story of Thorby's sequential life disruptions --from child slave bought by the kindly (& mysterious) "Pop" Baslam the Beggar, to part of the Sisu Trader family, to the brief stint in the galactic military to his final (surprise) return to his "real" identity. Heinlein uses Thorby & his adventures to discourse (at times somewhat excessively) on one of his favorite themes, freedom & its inverse, the loathsome slavery. It's because of the sometimes pedantic tone that I give this 4 stars instead of 5, because the book bogs down a bit occasionally.
But I thought after rereading it for the first time in decades, that it's held up well; Heinlein's visions of star travel seem as likely & vivd now as they did then, & big business & people are every bit as sleazy now as portrayed then...with a few good folks here & there, still trying to fight the good fight. Like a lot of Heinlein, it contains grains of hope toward humanity without ever (ever!) being overly optimistic.
Rich characters and interesting situations --Heinlein gives free rein to his anthropological ideas in this one-- make this a diverting read/listen. And of course, Grover Gardner does it right!

7 of 10 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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nice

I like Heinelin's endings they kinda make me think about what I would do next I'd I were the main character.

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    5 out of 5 stars

Loved it

This is my favorite book of all time loved it as a kid listening to it was wonderful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Interesting story for a family trip

We listened to this story during our family trip to visit relatives. It was enjoyed by all nine of us from 6 to 53.

There are a couple of slow technical chapters around 1/3 of the way through but story picked up again.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Science fiction at its best

This is a wonderful book by a master of science fiction. The story of a boy growing up in a chain of exotic environments, vividly told and paced. The plot strongly resembles Rudyard Kipling’s Kim, but the setting is brilliantly different. The recording is well read and complete.

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could not have been better!

Heinlein managed as he often did to write a young adult novel while inserting enough current science to maintain adult interest. uninstall this case, anthropology. The book is excellent, the performance reminiscent of the time and style of when the book was written. One could not ask for a better overall result.

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Arguably the best Heinlein

Citizen is unbelievably good. it takes you from a young boy to a young man who learns what he has to do. Excellent role models are given for him. He learns to stand on his own two feet while learning his responsibilities. I love this Heinlein juvenile.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

A story beyond its time

Perhaps not RAH's best but but very worth reading. Slavery, without reference to race (completely different concept) is central. Written in the late 50's??? Incredible. Shifting frames of reference from the point of view of an adolescent male are instructive. Females who (truly) wish to understand male psychology might give this a read. Females who wish to denigrate males will no doubt pass, as usual.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful