- Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
- Publisher: Baen (August 28, 2001)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0671877046
- ISBN-13: 978-0671877040
- Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 0.8 x 7.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 5 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 267 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,787,106 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Glory Road Mass Market Paperback – August 28, 2001
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About the Author
Robert A. Heinlein, four-time winner of the Hugo Award and recipient of three Retro Hugos, received the first Grand Master Nebula Award for lifetime achievement. His worldwide bestsellers have been translated into 22 languages and include Stranger in a Strange Land, Starship Troopers, Time Enough for Love, and The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress. His long-lost first novel, For Us, the Living, was recently published by Scribner and Pocket Books.
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I just finished re-reading this book for the first time since my freshman year in college. It has stood the test of time and is well worth reading not just by science fiction afficionados, but by anyone interested in the United States of the 1960's, as well as by sociologists, psychologists, and anyone else looking for an outstandingly good read, albeit an unusual one.
I recently also reread TUNNEL IN THE SKY, which was an excellent story because he did not try to push his politics and his characters did not engage adolescent-day-dream sex.
What does carry over is, firstly, (of course) the imaginative story-telling and writing. Not as obvious maybe but certainly there are elements of some signature Heinlein themes like libertarianism, individualism, role of goverment, etc.
Short synopsis: Bored twenty-something recently discharged from the army listlessly wondering the french riviera area speculating how he'll make his mark, trying to get together the money to attend university. Encounters a beautiful, mysterious stranger on the beach and subsequently finds an ad in the paper looking for 'worriors'. He visits the address on the advertisement and is drawn into a magical quest w/ this same beautiful stranger spanning galaxies and universes. The last part of the book is concerned with his life after the quest and the tough decisions he has to make to be happy.
The basic concept is a study of different manners and moralities between cultures. It's rather interesting in that the primary protagonist is a Vietnam military veteran--although the novel was copyrighted in 1964, before most Americans had yet even heard of Vietnam (I first read it myself in 1969).
Like most Heinlein novels, it's more of a debate placed in a plot than a lot of action, and his characters are similar to his characters in several of his other novels. The author is making his point, but it's a good point interestingly related in the plot.
Toward the end, it begins to drag...but by the end you realize the "drag" is intentional...it's what the protagonist is feeling that leads to a satisfying ending.
Although sexuality is broadly referenced, it's not at all explicit (kind of racy for 1964, but barely PG-13 these days).
This time I thoroughly enjoyed the book, but it is certainly a product of the mid 1960s.This science fantasy (fantasy with trappings of science fiction) was obviously written for a male audience. However as is typical of Heinlein, the female lead, Star, is super competent and perfectly capable of doing what she needs to in order to accomplish her goals.
About two-thirds of the book is the adventure. The last part is what happens after the adventure ends and Oscar Gordon, Hero, has a life to lead. As an adult, I found this section quite interesting.
I think if you like fantasy, you'll like this book, if you keep in mind its history. It deserves 4.5 stars, but I knocked it down because it is showing its age.