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Book Reviews of Stranger in a Strange Land

Stranger in a Strange Land
Stranger in a Strange Land
Author: Robert A. Heinlein
ISBN-13: 9780441790340
ISBN-10: 0441790348
Publication Date: 5/15/1987
Pages: 438
Rating:
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 381

4 stars, based on 381 ratings
Publisher: ACE Charter
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

50 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

timgatewood avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 10 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 11
Heinlein was well known in his time to be less than thrilled at all the hippies and drop-outs who adopted this book as their bible. He was said to have hated it when people asked to "share water" with him, as if the ceremony he invented was somehow sacred. His own time spent in the U.S. Navy (had to leave for actual medical reasons) led him to believe that only those who did national service should vote (See Starship Troopers) - so, he was far from thrilled by the peace movement and the drop-outs of the Sixties.

EVEN SO, this book had a profound effect on American culture by opening the minds of its many, many readers to the possibility of a religion that meant something, that led to actual changes in how people behave and act toward one another, not just beliefs -- but actions. I dare say that the thoughts Heinlein put out into the culture via this book were an important part of the stew that led to the reviving of religion as a vital force in the culture, after it had become so staid and dry during the Fifties.

Okay, enough profundities. This book changed my life. There, I said it. It did that by leading me to ask myself questions that I had been trying to avoid, which put me on a different path religiously and otherwise. I might have been a very different person had I never read this book.

The world would have been much different had Heinlein not written it. You owe it to yourself to read this NOW.
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 19 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
Amazing book. And the characters are so real! You can truly see people acting this way, making these decisions. And Valentine -- the main character -- is truly what you would expect a man from another planet to act like, having no understanding of anything even remotely human. The preconceived notions that humans have, no matter where they are from -- he does not have them. Wonderful, and completely realistic. I understand why the cover reads "The most famous science fiction novel ever written."
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 63 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
This was Heinlein's crossover book. He had written stories attracting science fiction fans for a decade or more. When this book came out in 1961 or so, it drew more readers than science fiction fans. Read it and find out why. It's a good read, simply but effectively written by a master story teller.
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 52 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
A man born on Mars - without human contact - and his learning experiences on becoming human. His innocence and his willing to trust others could leave him vulnerable to the not so nice, but he is lucky to fall in with those who will protect him and teach him (and who are later, willing to LEARN from him).

Explores new or different family structures/marriages.

Magic is simply science shown to the uneducated seems to be one of the themes.
reina avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 10 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This book definitely ranks as one of Heinlein's best works. The premise is intriguing, as is his idea of the future of our country, especially in light of when the book was written. This author is definitely one of my favorites.
doctorslime avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 241 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
If you are going to read 100 Sci-fi Books in your life.

This book needs to be in the top ten, of that stack of 100 books.
Reading may not change your life, but it may change your perspective
on life if you read it while your young enough to be influenced by
Literature.

Its a classical Sci-fi Tale, and it puts a lot out there for you to consider,
maybe it was more timely to read it back in the 70's and 80's Like I did, but
I do think it holds significant weight and should be required reading for those
looking to expand their perspectives on Literature and Life.

Great Book, Great Sci-fi.
Can you Grok it baby?

DoctorSlime.paperbackswap.com
Michael
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 191 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This book is Heinlein's masterpiece . . .a cult favorite . . the story of Valentine MIchael Smith, the man from Mars who taught humankind grokking and water-sharing. And love.
CAJUN avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 339 more book reviews
name valentine michael smith, acestry, human, origin, mars. michael was born on mars and learned the way of life of mars. he was sent to earth to learn, due to different vocals, he had to learn how to be a human. had never seen a woman, that was a first for him. this books has more twists and turns to drive your mind up the wall trying to figure out what is the real perpose of him being on earth. a lot of surprises is all i am going to tell you. reader beware, you are in for a trip of a life time.
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 35 more book reviews
The golden age of science fiction at it's best. A martian comes to live on earth.
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 1240 more book reviews
An outstanding book by an outstanding author. I've read Heinlein's sciece fiction before but somehow missed this one which is often said to be his greatest work. The tale features the Man from Mars, an innocent who is brought to earth. The Martians are an interesting group that abhors wrongness - violence in any form. However, Valentine grows into Earth's culture. He protects those he loves and teaches many Marian language and values. Whenever his "water brothers" (those he loves) are threatened they just vanish. Keep in mind that the book was published in the 1970s so it reflects the values of that time I think you will agree.
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 84 more book reviews
The stunning story of an earthling, born and educated on Mars, who arrives on our planet with suerhuman powers and a total ignorance of the mores of man. You must get the book to contune this story.........
doctorslime avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 241 more book reviews
If you are going to read 100 Sci-fi Books in your life.

This book needs to be in the top ten, of that stack of 100 books.
Reading may not change your life, but it may change your perspective
on life if you read it while your young enough to be influenced by
Literature.

Its a classical Sci-fi Tale, and it puts a lot out there for you to consider,
maybe it was more timely to read it back in the 70's and 80's Like I did, but
I do think it holds significant weight and should be required reading for those
looking to expand their perspectives on Literature and Life.

Great Book, Great Sci-fi.
Can you Grok it baby?

DoctorSlime.paperbackswap.com
Michael
doctorslime avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 241 more book reviews
If you are going to read 100 Sci-fi Books in your life.

This book needs to be in the top ten, of that stack of 100 books.
Reading may not change your life, but it may change your perspective
on life if you read it while your young enough to be influenced by
Literature.

Its a classical Sci-fi Tale, and it puts a lot out there for you to consider,
maybe it was more timely to read it back in the 70's and 80's Like I did, but
I do think it holds significant weight and should be required reading for those
looking to expand their perspectives on Literature and Life.

Great Book, Great Sci-fi.
Can you Grok it baby?

DoctorSlime.paperbackswap.com
Michael
nccorthu avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 569 more book reviews
A classic . A remarkable thing Sci Fi from before the computer and other such stuff. Very interesting as to how we viewed the World then.
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 98 more book reviews
This is where "to grok" came from.... a classic of the 70's
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on
I love this book, even though this book was first published in 1961, it's ideas and views are still ahead of our time while having a thoroughly engaging story.
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 84 more book reviews
I never considered my self a sci-fi fan but this book may have changed my mind. I can not believe there has not been a movie based on this book. I connected with the "Man from Mars" Michael. Being raised on Mars on having no ideas of what it is like to be human/earthling, the confusion and eagerness to fit in. The struggles to connect his Maritan understanding of life, right and wrong, relationships with his new life and family on earth. I love the concept of "water brothers" and "thou art god". The book was very though provoking and offers a new perspective on how to view life, love, religion, death, property, wealth, everything it is be be human.
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 495 more book reviews
One of SF's most seminal works.
doctorslime avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 241 more book reviews
If you are going to read 100 Sci-fi Books in your life.

This book needs to be in the top ten, of that stack of 100 books.
Reading may not change your life, but it may change your perspective
on life if you read it while your young enough to be influenced by
Literature.

Its a classical Sci-fi Tale, and it puts a lot out there for you to consider,
maybe it was more timely to read it back in the 70's and 80's Like I did, but
I do think it holds significant weight and should be required reading for those
looking to expand their perspectives on Literature and Life.

Great Book, Great Sci-fi.
Can you Grok it baby?

DoctorSlime.paperbackswap.com
Michael
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 296 more book reviews
This is a rather famous "cult" book out of the 60's when there was a lot of interest in sexual mores and new thoughts on them--this fits right into Woodstock and the whole environment of the times.
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 95 more book reviews
The classic!
doctorslime avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 241 more book reviews
If you are going to read 100 Sci-fi Books in your life.

This book needs to be in the top ten, of that stack of 100 books.
Reading may not change your life, but it may change your perspective
on life if you read it while your young enough to be influenced by
Literature.

Its a classical Sci-fi Tale, and it puts a lot out there for you to consider,
maybe it was more timely to read it back in the 70's and 80's Like I did, but
I do think it holds significant weight and should be required reading for those
looking to expand their perspectives on Literature and Life.

Great Book, Great Sci-fi.
Can you Grok it baby?

DoctorSlime.paperbackswap.com
Michael
doctorslime avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 241 more book reviews
If you are going to read 100 Sci-fi Books in your life.

This book needs to be in the top ten, of that stack of 100 books.
Reading may not change your life, but it may change your perspective
on life if you read it while your young enough to be influenced by
Literature.

Its a classical Sci-fi Tale, and it puts a lot out there for you to consider,
maybe it was more timely to read it back in the 70's and 80's Like I did, but
I do think it holds significant weight and should be required reading for those
looking to expand their perspectives on Literature and Life.

Great Book, Great Sci-fi.
Can you Grok it baby?

DoctorSlime.paperbackswap.com
Michael
jeffp avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 201 more book reviews
A classic, and one where I don't find Heinlein quite as off-putting as most of his works.
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 25 more book reviews
A view of our life and culture from the outside-something many writers attempt but very few carry-off this well.
doctorslime avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 241 more book reviews
If you are going to read 100 Sci-fi Books in your life.

This book needs to be in the top ten, of that stack of 100 books.
Reading may not change your life, but it may change your perspective
on life if you read it while your young enough to be influenced by
Literature.

Its a classical Sci-fi Tale, and it puts a lot out there for you to consider,
maybe it was more timely to read it back in the 70's and 80's Like I did, but
I do think it holds significant weight and should be required reading for those
looking to expand their perspectives on Literature and Life.

Great Book, Great Sci-fi.
Can you Grok it baby?

DoctorSlime.paperbackswap.com
Michael
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on
This book fit in perfectly with the era in which it was released; pushing the envelope of the free love movement of the 60's. Although I'm glad I read it so I could come to my own conclusion, sadly I don't feel it stands the test of time and certainly does not deserve to be called the best science fiction book ever written.
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 3 more book reviews
Classic old-school sci-fi. I'm not usually a science fiction reader but this drew me in, even if it's kind of sexist and homophobic. It opens the mind, even if that's in a very 70's kind of way.
billystan3 avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 42 more book reviews
This book is Robert Heinlein at his best. It tells the story of a boy abandoned on Mars to live with the Martians. And how the martians have taken an abandoned child from another planet and train him in their ways. When the boy is finally returned to Earth he is a teen full of curiosity over theses strange beings that for all intents and purposes look like him. They act very strangly though and as the book progresses you see how the now young man in his frustration begins to unwind and go back to doing things the Martian way.
doctorslime avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 241 more book reviews
If you are going to read 100 Sci-fi Books in your life.

This book needs to be in the top ten, of that stack of 100 books.
Reading may not change your life, but it may change your perspective
on life if you read it while your young enough to be influenced by
Literature.

Its a classical Sci-fi Tale, and it puts a lot out there for you to consider,
maybe it was more timely to read it back in the 70's and 80's Like I did, but
I do think it holds significant weight and should be required reading for those
looking to expand their perspectives on Literature and Life.

Great Book, Great Sci-fi.
Can you Grok it baby?

DoctorSlime.paperbackswap.com
Michael
whoviangirl avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on
I read this book roughly three years ago, I still think about it nearly every day. It was my first time with SciFi, having spent more time in the Fantasy side of the Genre. I couldn't have a chosen a better book. You really grow to care about the characters. the Plot line is strong and concise. I had a bit of trouble, with certain aspects (the "grass" in the living room) but that came with starting a new genre. I cannot recommend it enough.in actuality I do recommend it often and loudly to my friends.
2Gabby avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 2 more book reviews
Robert A. Heinlein is my favorite author of all time...I have read this particular book many times over the years, and it's full of subtle layers, so that each time I come away with something I had missed from the time before. It's like buried treasure...

If you have never read this book, or anything else from this author be prepared for a great adventure of the mind, with compelling characters and thought-stimulating ideas. Heinlein took on some very controversial (for the time period it was written in!) subjects in this book and stood them on their collective ears...I hope you will enjoy reading it even HALF as much as I did, and that you will grok it in the fullness of time.
ladytexan avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 5 more book reviews
I read this book years ago and had a paperback. I wanted a hardback to add to my favorite book collection. It is an excellent book and I recommend it to all. If you have read any Robert Heinlein........this by far his best.
doctorslime avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 241 more book reviews
If you are going to read 100 Sci-fi Books in your life.

This book needs to be in the top ten, of that stack of 100 books.
Reading may not change your life, but it may change your perspective
on life if you read it while your young enough to be influenced by
Literature.

Its a classical Sci-fi Tale, and it puts a lot out there for you to consider,
maybe it was more timely to read it back in the 70's and 80's Like I did, but
I do think it holds significant weight and should be required reading for those
looking to expand their perspectives on Literature and Life.

Great Book, Great Sci-fi.
Can you Grok it baby?

DoctorSlime.paperbackswap.com
Michael
perryfran avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 923 more book reviews
Super science fiction novel from the 60s. Must read!
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 5 more book reviews
I grokked this book in fullness and found it wanting. On the sci-fi front the technological aspects have not aged well. From a 'future society' standpoint it felt more like a commentary on the counter culture movement of the late 60's. Worth a read if you want to read a sci-fi book from the 60's.
xen avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on
Whatever. It's Heinlein. It's Stranger. Why exactly haven't you read this? The only acceptable responses are "I'm illiterate" or "I'm stoopid".
sunalso avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 40 more book reviews
A message especially relevant in today's world. You need to grok this book.
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 54 more book reviews
Classic Heinlein.
"I am but an egg."
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on
Heinlein's best. Period.
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 6 more book reviews
A MUST read.
mtb avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 29 more book reviews
For me, this book defined a lot of what my generation was about, no, INTO, in the early 70s: the openness and warmth of communal relationships, the importance of Love, patience as a virtue... the Martian saying "Waiting is Fullness" and the creation of the word, now in the dictionary, "Grok." Which to me means to absorb something totally to the point that you are part of it, to share spirituality in a group form, not just by yourself - this was so much a part of my college experience, theatre classes were all about that, as were many other empathetic psychoanalytical styles of the time. If you have read The Red Planet by Heinlein, written more for teens, he is already beginning to examine these concepts of intuitive kindness & a sort of Buddhistic understanding of nature (Martians) vs the Greed & Colonialism of Humans. Powerful bok; in the day it changed many lives, inluding mine.
CrazyaboutFantasy avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 49 more book reviews
One of the best, if not the best, Science Fiction books I have ever read.
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 85 more book reviews
After reading Starship Troopers, I wanted to read more of a brilliant storyteller, philosopher, and literary poly sci professor. This book started decent and continued that way far into three-quarters of the book. That last bit, though, was very hard for me to get through--and I can get through most anything.
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 47 more book reviews
Awesome book.
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 43 more book reviews
I usually don't read SciFi, but a friend recommended this book and I thoughly enjoyed it. It was written in 1961 What was scary was that it is not that much of SciFi today.
reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 13 more book reviews
Excellent book worthy of its SciFi classic status.
Sunshine avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 142 more book reviews
I'm not a huge Sci-Fi fan but this one kept me interested.
kcrouth avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on
I do not grok this in fullness, the waiting is.
perryfran avatar reviewed Stranger in a Strange Land on + 923 more book reviews
Super sci-fi from Heinlein. Can you "grok" it?
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