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The Ghost Brigades (Old Man's War) Mass Market Paperback – May 1, 2007
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“The sequel to Old Man's War combines taut military action with keen insights into the moral issues revolving around developing technologies. Scalzi has a finely tuned sense of balance between personal drama and the 'big picture' ... Highly recommended.” ―Library Journal (starred review) on The Ghost Brigades
“A mix of Starship Troopers and Universal Soldier, Ghost evokes awakening, betrayal, and combat in the best military sci-fi tradition.” ―Entertainment Weekly on The Ghost Brigades
“An impressive piece of work.” ―Philadelphia Inquirer on The Ghost Brigades
“Fast and deep…I like the galaxy this author's playing in, the characters he limns, the situations he's playing with, and I'm glad there's at least one more volume on the way.” ―San Diego Union-Tribune on The Ghost Brigades
“In Heinleinesque fashion, the book is loaded with scenes of comradeship, isolation, ruthlessness and the protocols, which govern the lives of active-duty soldiers. But this is where Scalzi, famous for his blog ‘The Whatever,' surpasses Heinlein. Scalzi weaves in subtle discussions of humanity's growing fear of aging and our simultaneous attraction and repulsion to the Frankensteinlike creatures we are able to create.” ―San Antonio Express-News on The Ghost Brigades
“Scalzi is a natural heir to Heinlein, and his second book in this series is a good old-fashioned space opera, which takes time to question the nature of free will.” ―St. Louis Press-Dispatch on The Ghost Brigades
“Astonishingly proficient.” ―Publishers Weekly (starred review) on Old Man’s War
“Top-notch. His combat scenes are blood-roiling. His dialogue is suitably snappy and profane. And the moral and philosophical issues he raises... insert useful ethical burrs under the military saddle of the story.” ―The Washington Post on Old Man’s War
“Smartly conceived and thoroughly entertaining, Old Man's War is a splendid novel.” ―Cleveland Plain-Dealer
From the Back Cover
Praise for "Old Man's War"
"Though a lot of SF writers are more or less efficiently continuing the tradition of Robert A. Heinlein, Scalzi's astonishingly proficient first novel reads like an original work by the late grand master...The novel's tone is right on target, too--sentimentality balanced by hardheaded calculation, know-it-all smugness moderated by innocent wonder. This virtuoso debut pays tribute to SF's past while showing that well-worn tropes still can have real zip when they're approached with ingenuity."
--"Publishers Weekly" (starred review)
"Solid...[Scalzi] sidesteps most of the cliches of military science fiction, delivers fast-paced scenes of combat and pays attention to the science underpinning his premise."
--"San Francisco"" Chronicle"
"Smartly conceived and thoroughly entertaining, "Old Man's War" is a splendid novel."
--"Cleveland Plain Dealer"
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I also like that the author used a different protagonist to tell the story. To me, this is not only refreshing but helps a lot in terms of world-building. I also liked the main character better than John Perry. Although they both go through a somewhat similar character arc in terms of going through basic training and becoming a soldier, Jared Dirac is just a more interesting person.
It's a good story. I look forward to reading the rest of the series. Recommended.
The story is excellent and introduces several major new characters, some of whom will continue into one or more of the following stories.
These books by John Scalzi have brought me back to reading science fiction, after several decades away. Scalzi's style of writing is very reminiscent of Robert Heinlein, and since Heinlein was my favorite author as a youth, I've found myself quickly drawn to these stories. I'm working my way through the series and coming to them late, as I have, has been beneficial since I'm able to read them one after the other, without waiting for each to come along. I'll be through the five existing books well in advance of the publication of the sixth later this year.
Books in the 'Old Man's War' series, to date:
Book 1: Old Man's War (2005)
Book 2: The Ghost Brigades (2006)
Book 3: The Last Colony (2007)
Book 4: Zoe's Tale (2008)
Book 5: The Human Division (2013)
Book 6: The End of All Things (to be released August 11, 2015)
True to form, Scalzi packs a lot of easily digestible information into a short and exciting book. The balance of kick-ass space marine battles with political intrigue and raw human emotion all make this book difficult to put down.