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The Forever War
The Forever War
Author: Joe Haldeman
Private William Mandella is a hero in spite of himself -- a reluctant conscript drafted into an elite military unit, and propelled through space and time to fight in a distant thousand-year conflict. He never wanted to go to war, but the leaders on Earth have drawn a line in the interstellar sand -- despite the fact that their fierce alien enemy...  more »
ISBN-13: 9780380708215
ISBN-10: 0380708213
Publication Date: 8/1996
Pages: 272
  • Currently 4.2/5 Stars.

4.2 stars, based on 70 ratings
Publisher: Eos (HarperCollins)
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
Other Versions: Hardcover, Audio Cassette, Audio CD
Members Wishing: 0
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reviewed The Forever War on + 49 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 8
I liked this book. Having said that, I almost quit reading it about half-way through. Although he has women in combat, there is a sexualization of women that made me uncomfortable. And the homophobia just pissed me off. Like I said, I was ready to ditch it, which is unusual for me. If I can make it past the first chapter or two I usually finish. I went back and reread a couple of PBS members reviews and decided to tough it out. I am glad I did. Even though some of his language concerning the interaction between sexes and his portrayal of homosexuals is somewhat dated, he was way ahead of time. I was wrong to label him as sexist and homophobic by today's context. The book was first published in 1972. For his time, he was quite enlightened. It turned out to be a great story. A great anti-war story. I hear a movie is being made. They'll screw it up.
reviewed The Forever War on + 28 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
Starts a little slow, and is at first quite reminiscent of Starship Trooper (the book, not the horrible movie). The pace picks up about halfway through, and while it is ostensibly about a confusing war with an ill-understood enemy, the real story is about humanity and it's evolution (or lack thereof). Depressing as hell, but with a few rays of hope scattered in for good measure. Won both the Hugo and Nebula awards for "Best Novel of the Year".
Good read!
reviewed The Forever War on + 101 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
This is a good one. He's a warrior, reluctant, but good at it nevertheless. Thanks to Relativity, he gets way out of synch with those he takes into battle. It's a good read.
reviewed The Forever War on + 283 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
A must-read classic from the golden age of SF. Haldeman redefines the concept of galactic war.
reviewed The Forever War on
Helpful Score: 1
I really enjoyed this book. I'm fairly new to reading sci-fi as a genre, and this story made it worthwhile.
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reviewed The Forever War on
I'll be honest, I only read this book to the halfway point and then called it quits. The beginning was engaging, with its physics-based interstellar combat, but that was over too quickly. Once the protagonist returns to Earth (20 years into the future because of time dilation) the book switches to making predictions about the future. Considering the book was written and set in the 1970s, the future for them was our, the readers', past. So, a lot of the predictions didn't come true. At first it was fun to read about the dystopia the author imagined, but the novelty wore off before too long. That's when I became bored and stopped reading.

I skimmed through the rest and it seems like there is a return to space combat, but once a book loses me I move on; there's only so many books a person can read in their lifetime and I don't think the phrase "suffering through it" should describe the act of reading.
reviewed The Forever War on + 9 more book reviews
Fantastic book. Obviously meant as commentary on the Vietnam War, but works equally well with today's wars. Fascinating and scary predictions about the future of humanity, but utterly believable at the same time. I am sorry I had not heard about this book until recently.
reviewed The Forever War on + 204 more book reviews
A few years ago, I read "Forever Peace," by Joe Haldeman. I enjoyed it, and was intrigued by what I thought was its prequel: "The Forever War". So let me start of by saying: This is NOT a prequel to "Forever Peace". The two novels are independent.

This book is a high quality space battle story. "Forever" has more to do with the time period over which this war transpired; relativistic time dilation tends to stretch things out when you've got interstellar battles going on.

It's not the best space-marine story I've read, but is better than most of them. It feels like it's part of the time in which it was written, as well (Vietnam era), so there's a bit of a "history-of-sf" feel going on.

4 of 5 stars.

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