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Publisher's Summary

Join the Army and See the Universe. That is the motto of The Third Space War, also known as The First Interstellar War, but most commonly as The Bug War. In one of Robert Heinlein's most controversial best sellers, a recruit of the future goes through the toughest boot camp in the universe - and into battle with the Terrain Mobile Infantry against mankind's most alarming enemy.

©1959 by Robert A. Heinlein; (P)1998 by Blackstone Audiobooks

Critic Reviews

  • Hugo Award, 1960

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.4 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    3,943
  • 4 Stars
    2,058
  • 3 Stars
    768
  • 2 Stars
    160
  • 1 Stars
    84

Performance

  • 4.1 out of 5.0
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  • 3 Stars
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  • 2 Stars
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Story

  • 4.5 out of 5.0
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  • 3 Stars
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  • 2 Stars
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  • Overall
  • Dan
  • Washington Township, NJ, USA
  • 06-20-08

Great book, awful narrator.

This is a great book, however, the narration is terribly bad. The tone is flat, w/o any emotion, like that of a first grade student learning how to read.

9 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Heilein's Ultimate Guide to Leadership

So this book has been an annual (at minimum) read for me for 20+ years. The philosophy contained within this story surpasses that of the great philosophers of all time. I actually read a lot of classical philosophy, but none (other than Plato's The Republic, and Allegory of the Cave, as well as all of Ayn Rand's work) compare - and none surpass. Simply, this book is about becoming a man (or woman, 'what's good for the goose') and a leader of Soldiers.

I have this book (as well as all of the Military Service Academies) as required reading for my Soldiers. In fact just this past week, while counseling one of my Soldiers, I had him review the story (parable in this case) of Private Hendrick and report back to me the lesson in that short excerpt. The entirety of this book is rife with examples of personal moral philosophy that Rico must learn (sometimes the hard way, but often just via epiphany after a lesson from Mr. (Colonel) Dubois (including several years after the class (e.g., "teaching me 'why' to fight, long after I had decided to fight anyhow").

My favorite part (biased perhaps because I'm a Master Sergeant myself) is the admonishment given to Rico and two other 3rd Lieutenants prior to their final assessment (a live mission inserted in the chain of command). The Officer Candidate School Commandant explains how each of them could be suddenly thrust into command (via KIAs of more senior officers) despite only being the lowest of lows of commissioned officers and asks...

Paraphrased -
"What will you do..."
"...consult your leading Sergeant."
"Obviously. He's probably older than you are, more drops under his belt, and he certainly knows his team better than you do... ask his advice. It won't decrease his confidence... If you don't he'll decide you are a fool... and he'll be right. You don't have to take his advice. Whether you use his ideas, or they spark some different plan - make your decision and snap out orders. The one thing that can strike terror in the heart of a good platoon sergeant is to find that he's working for a boss who can't make up his mind. There's never been an outfit in which officers and men were more dependent on each other than they are in the MI.I. and Sergeants are the glue that holds us together... Never forget it."

However, Heinlein's discourse on why they have the system they have and why it's better than any in history is in and of itself, inimitable.

I enjoyed the narrator, but there are several dubbed in segments laced throughout the book, at first I thought my wireless headphones were going out, but after listening to it again (as well as other books) it's definitely the recording. I usually listen at 3x speed and had no problem with this book.

I own the kindle edition and most of the printed editions (minus the first edition). It's nice to review all of the stories in print and I really like the whisper link between audible and kindle.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Brilliant

There is a reason this book is on the Commandant of the Marine Corps' reading list!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Still a kick-ass book

This book shares little with the movie except title and character names. In a very general way I guess the plot somewhat lines up... somewhat. But not really.

I read this book years ago while in still in the army. Nine years later and I still get excited and tingly listening to it.

The narrator was fine in tone and pace, though I could have done without some of those 2 second pauses, but his patch work overlays could rip me right out of my imaging of the story. You'll pick them out pretty easily. it can be irritating but it's a fine book and story.

Don't be upset, at the end, I wish there was a sequel too. Book chapter 14 (final chapter) is the best.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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the book was so much better.

I loved this so much the performance was amazing and my only problem with it is that there isn't a sequel

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Story

one of the best!

One of the best! older book, 1952ish? some of the technology doesn't translate well to 2016, but the story is sound

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story

perfect

listened to it three times, love this book. some great lessons on how a great society could work.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Love the story, unimpressed with the narration

Where does Starship Troopers rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

It rates last due to the narration.

What other book might you compare Starship Troopers to and why?

Hight school math book.

What didn’t you like about Lloyd James’s performance?

To flat and boring.

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

I could not listen to it in one sitting. Got irritated with the narration.

Any additional comments?

No.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
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  • L.
  • Travelers Rest, SC, United States
  • 01-10-12

The book is the way the movie should have been...

It doesn't matter if I read it from my old hard-back edition, or listen to it from Audible via my iPhone, "The book is the way the Movie should have been made".

There's very few books I care to go through twice, but this is one of those few.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

If you have only seen the movie...

If you've only seen the movie, read the book. It's totally different but fascinating and gives more perspective/content to some of the stuff from the movie.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful