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Glory Road Paperback – March 21, 2006
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About the Author
Robert A. Heinlein (1907-1988) is widely acknowledged to have been the single most important and influential author of science fiction in the twentieth century. He won science fiction's Hugo Award for Best Novel four times, and in addition, three of his novels were given Retrospective Hugos fifty years after publication. He won Science Fiction Writers of America's first Grand Master Award for his lifetime achievement.
Born in Butler, Missouri, Heinlein graduated from the United States Naval Academy and served as an officer in the navy for five years. He started writing to help pay off his mortgage, and his first story was published in Astounding Science-Fiction magazine in 1939. In 1947, he published a story in The Saturday Evening Post, making him the first science-fiction writer to break into the mainstream market. Long involved in politics, Heinlein was deeply affected by events such as the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the Cold War, and his fiction tended to convey strong social and political messages. His many influential novels include Starship Troopers, Stranger in a Strange Land, The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress, and Time Enough for Love. At the time of his death in 1988, he was living in Carmel, California with his wife Virginia.
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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.
I've always thought Heinlein wrote GR as a fun piece. Sure, RH will teach you something, give you something to think about, even here. But try and read GR without comparing it to everything else RH wrote.
I give it four stars on the Heinlein scale, which would be a five for everyone else.