- Hardcover: 204 pages
- Publisher: Ace Books (1997)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1568654308
- ISBN-13: 978-1568654300
- Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.7 x 0.8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (1,751 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #790,870 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Starship Troopers Hardcover – 1997
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Top Customer Reviews
I don't want to delve too deeply into the politics of this novel. Some have pinned a fascist connotation on it, but I try to examine this future society philosophically. Only those who serve in the military can vote, but the vast majority of people choose not to serve and live happy lives as civilians, so I don't see anything fascist about this society. What intrigues me most, and it is this that sets this book apart from the vast majority of science fiction, is Heinlein's thought-provoking ideas about ethics, morality, duty, responsibility, etc. Mr.Read more ›
(Director Paul Verhoeven and screenwriter Ed Neumeier took incredible liberties with, and sometimes even directly contradicted, the book on which their film is 'based'. It's a fine film on its own terms and I think it's been unjustly maligned. But it's not this novel; it's the next round in an ongoing dispute with this novel. And whatever else the movie has going for it, its _military_ action is incompetent to the point of silliness.)
I've been reading Heinlein for nearly forty years now. I don't think this is one of his best three or four novels, and it's never going to be one of my personal favorites either. Nevertheless, it _is_ a genuinely great work of SF and raises issues that genuinely deserve to be raised.
Whether you buy Heinlein's own _answers_ is a different matter. The 'arguments' presented by the characters in the novel are mostly aimed at straw men. ('My mother says violence never settles anything', indeed.) This is perhaps forgivable since so much of Heinlein's positive case is so good. But I'm not persuaded that the society he imagines in this novel would be as functional as he seems to think.
At any rate, its essential socio-political point -- that authority and responsibility are a coordinated yin-yang pair and an imbalance between them puts the world out of whack -- is extremely well taken. (It applies more broadly, too.Read more ›
This novel is usually portrayed as an anti-war treatise. However, that's not how I saw it. It is a treatise, for sure, but one that concerns itself with government's purpose in regard to the individual. Heinlein paints a strangely subtle portrait of modern democracy, with fascinating embellishments. By doing so, he spurs thought from his reader concerning the duties inherent in living in a democracy. The most intriguing question he asks is, do modern citizens of democracies have any right to them if they choose not to participate? To what degree is this participation in a democracy necessary? Is it true that "the best things in life are free"? What is moral in a just society?
What is most striking about this fictional society is that it is a limited democracy, modeled after Classical society, perhaps. Only those who enroll in and complete a "Term of Federal Service" (and all residents in the world culture may attempt it, though few succeed) are allowed citizenship and the right to decide the future of the society. The rationale of this is that only in the stress of Federal Service can a person learn the community virtue of placing the needs of the society above the needs of onesself. Although this idea may be impossible to speculate on, it is worthy of thought from all members of democratic societies.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book is a great read. It is engrossing, well written, and like the other books I have read by this author deleves into intensive philisophical issues almost seamlessly. Read morePublished 2 days ago by Nick Gorton
Maybe I expected too much, but I found this book a little confusing. I had trouble identifying some of the lesser characters. Read morePublished 3 days ago by JK130971
Not nearly as much action but definitely interesting. The corporal punishment and veterans running the government was an interesting community. Wish there was more on the bug war.Published 4 days ago by zergling
RAH never ceases to amaze me with his uncanny assessments of current American society which he described six decades ago.Published 4 days ago by Kevin and Ben
This is the Ur story that created the Military SF genre, and is still the best of breed in that class. Read morePublished 5 days ago by Bill Quick
I did like what parts of the book I did read. It was a little slow moving for me. I may come back to finish it sometime.Published 5 days ago by Pattie
The book was absolutely fantastic. I love Heinleins other works and this is no different. It's got action. It's got science fiction, it's got drama. Read morePublished 8 days ago by Amazon Customer
A much different tale from the cinematic adaptation, and I'm glad I took the time to read it. Lots of excellent philosophical topics that are pertinent today.Published 8 days ago by Kevin McDermott