Tuesday, June 26, 2007
The Forever War by Joe Haldeman
Despite its Vietnam War origins, The Forever War is easily one of the great science-fiction novels of all time, somehow managing to pack a lot of science-fiction elements in a short novel yet told from the perspective of a very sympathetic character. Somehow, reading Haldeman was like reading a modern Philip K Dick and Robert Heinlein. That is to say the story is easy to get into and the language is smooth. Yet at the same time Haldeman touches on a lot of science-fiction ideas without necessarily exploring them fully--he sticks to his core concept, which is a good thing. In the end, what makes this a good read is that it is definitely a heart-wrenching story, and it does take unexpected turns. The Forever War is a good example that science-fiction isn't necessarily just about concepts but about character.