Old Man's War

Old Man's War

By John Scalzi

  • Release Date: 2007-04-01
  • Genre: Science Fiction
Score: 4.5
4.5
From 677 Ratings
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Description

John Perry did two things on his 75th birthday. First he visited his wife's grave. Then he joined the army.

The good news is that humanity finally made it into interstellar space. The bad news is that planets fit to live on are scarce-and aliens willing to fight for them are common. The universe, it turns out, is a hostile place.

So: we fight. To defend Earth (a target for our new enemies, should we let them get close enough) and to stake our own claim to planetary real estate. Far from Earth, the war has gone on for decades: brutal, bloody, unyielding.

Earth itself is a backwater. The bulk of humanity's resources are in the hands of the Colonial Defense Force, which shields the home planet from too much knowledge of the situation. What's known to everybody is that when you reach retirement age, you can join the CDF. They don't want young people; they want people who carry the knowledge and skills of decades of living. You'll be taken off Earth and never allowed to return. You'll serve your time at the front. And if you survive, you'll be given a generous homestead stake of your own, on one of our hard-won colony planets.

John Perry is taking that deal. He has only the vaguest idea what to expect. Because the actual fight, light-years from home, is far, far harder than he can imagine-and what he will become is far stranger.

At the publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management software (DRM) applied.

Reviews

  • This was an interesting read

    4
    By Person 183
    Well now I tried this book and it worked as a great gate keeper to the new world (for me) of science fiction. Although I did go to my nearest old man and suggest the book to him. When I told him the name he wondered if he heard me correctly. So he asked me to write it down, and I gave it to him. He was polite and kindly excused me. Then I was off but then I heard a grunt and guessed that it was him finally figuring the implications. Of what he guessed I meant, then I started hearing tearing. So well this is a difficult book to give to people over sixty who would be considered "old".
  • Meh

    2
    By AfraidOfPolice
    The reviews were amazing so I read it. I considered the writing to be underwhelming. Calling this guy the next heinlein is reaching for sure.
  • The 21st Century Rewrite of Heinlein's Starship Troopers

    3
    By JohnMHammer
    I stumbled across Scalzi when a very minor character on my favorite TV show of all time was seen reading this book. Scalzi was also a creative consultant on that show so, along with other members of that show's cast and production team, I've been following him on a Twitter list for some years now. On Twitter he is funny and interesting so when this book went on sale recently I decided to buy it here in the iBooks store. The book is well-written although the characters are mostly generic and flat; even the snarky narrator and hero isn't particularly distinctive as an individual person. The action is evenly paced between exposition disguised as dialogue. It tastes like a Heinlein novel. In fact, the entire book is basically a rewrite of Starship Troopers with cloned super-bodies taking the place of battle suits and a plethora of hostile races standing in for the bugs. This is not necessarily a bad thing but Scalzi breaks no new ground here nor are cultures or concepts explored beyond a most superficial level. I enjoyed reading this book but I don't feel motivated to read the other books in this series.
  • Overrated

    3
    By Tachyon450
    Not terrible, but the glut of 5 star reviews today is insane. There is no way to adequately compare books and ratings since standards are so low everything nowadays is 5 star. The story is interesting as long as one doesn't get too involved in an actual plot. Everyone is an enemy, kill everyone and don't make an attempt to understand the science since in the future we know even less than now. I ordered the book after reading the author got a large advance on future books. I assume his books sell well, but not really my taste.
  • Leaves a bad taste

    2
    By BossHoggIsBack
    The basic premise is interesting, and the plot develops with a satisfying number of twists. But... Those who have served in the military will find some parts silly, and even a little insulting for Marines. The dialogue is also clunky and unnatural, especially for the female characters. But what really turned me off was the approach he takes with morality. One example is that the main character supposedly loved his wife more than anything, but reminisces that cheating made his marriage stronger. Bleh.
  • Old Man's Health

    5
    By Baby Grunge
    Enjoyed it very much. This book and the series were a very easy read. Was awesome to pick up the book and continue reading every chance I had even a few extra minutes. Each time it was just like I hadn't had to put it down.
  • Old Man's War

    5
    By J Merv Smith
    Very good book, I usually take a week or more to read 600-700 pages. Got this done in 4 days. Good story and character development. Technical references where believable and yet not too far out there. I will continue the series mostly because I like the main character, Scalzi pulled me in, way in !
  • Great story

    5
    By 55Rooster
    Great story, well thought out and engaging. Very slow to begin with but once it got going WOW! I think I've found a new series of books to read.
  • A great sci-fi novel

    5
    By Scott_T87
    I really liked this book. The characters are very relatable and believable. Typical sci-fi can get a little bogged down in its own tech and history, this one suffered no such problems.
  • Whoawhoawhoawhoawhoawhoa

    5
    By Sif Food
    I heard so many good things about this book, I was more surprised to find out that there was more to it the just being good. This book has piqued my interest in sci-fi genres. Truly a fan for life. If you haven't read or experienced this fine book, then please buy a copy. You will not be disappointed.

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