The Forever War

The Forever War

Book - 2003
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Private William Mandella is a hero in spite of himself -- a reluctant conscript drafted into an elite military unit, and propelled through space and time to fight in a distant thousand-year conflict. He never wanted to go to war, but the leaders on Earth have drawn a line in the interstellar sand -- despite the fact that their fierce alien enemy is unknowable, unconquerable, and very far away. So Mandella will perform his duties without rancor and even rise up through the military's ranks . . . if he survives. But the true test of his mettle will come when he returns to Earth. Because of the time dilation caused by space travel the loyal soldier is aging months, while his home planet is aging centuries -- and the difference will prove the saying: you never can go home.
Publisher: New York : Thomas Dunne Books, 2003.
ISBN: 9780312536633
Call Number: HALDEMAN
Characteristics: 264 p. ; 21 cm.
Subjects: Space warfare -- Fiction.
Space and time -- Fiction.
Aging -- Fiction.
Science fiction.


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Dec 01, 2018

One of the best Sci-fi books ever written. Yes there is casual sex and killing and other unpleasant things caused by war and killing and such. Always has been and always will be as wars are nasty things especially when fought for "reasons unknown". About as anti-war as a book can be while graphically telling the tale of war. Very well written as well.

Aug 22, 2018

Loved classic on trying to wage war with non-FTL drive & communications against non-human species with universal themes of home front changed, hard to get use to civilian life to hurry up & wait military life.
Of course there is swearing in dealing with life in death situations. You expect rainbows & unicorns?

Sep 07, 2016

Interesting take on war considering when novel was written. Good read!!

Jul 16, 2016

One might expect that a story set in the future, where men and women are drafted into military service in identical roles, would be worth reading. One would be wrong. Sexist slipping occasionally in to misogyny. I almost gave up on page 8 when I had reached my tolerance limit for the F-word, but gave it another 100 pages because it isn't good to just give up. Except sometimes it is.
Page 47:
"The orgy that night was amusing, but it was like trying to sleep in the middle of a raucous beach party. The only area big enough to sleep all of us was the dining hall; they draped a few bed sheets here and there for privacy, then they unleashed Stargate's eighteen sex-starved men on our women, compliant and promiscuous by military custom (and law), but desiring nothing so much as sleep on solid ground."

Jabberwock12 May 22, 2015

I read this a while back and gave it to a friend (and he never returned it)... A top-notch, great read. A true sci-fi novel.

Apr 29, 2015

Good old fashioned science fiction with no wizards, fairies, or magic.

Mar 25, 2015

For the longest time I never read this book because a friend, and avid sci-fi reader, told me he didn't like it much. But, since it was so well regarded I decided to finally read it. It was great. Definitely worthy of all the praise it has received. What struck me the most was how ahead of its time this book was. I think it was written in 1974, keep that in mind when you read it.

Aug 27, 2014

Great book...a Hugo and Nebula award winner. Loved. It.

Dec 06, 2013

The story of a "space marine" fighting through the ages after humanity makes it's first contact with an unknown race. Every year he spends traveling to a new world to fight the enemy, hundreds of years are passing back on Earth. It begins with him as a Private in the 1990s and ends with him as a Major in the year 3000. He goes back to Earth to visit and finds an Earth he no longer knows or wishes to know. The author was a Vietnam veteran so there are lots of themes of fighting a foreign, unknowable enemy, and returning to a home that no longer exists. Very readable, funny, depressing, and entertaining.

Aug 14, 2013

This is Haldeman writing at his best! Plus his creative use of the "Exceptional Draft" (drafting the most intellectually gifted) makes the most logical sense from the viewpoint of lending the most credence to survival and justifiable war, while reminding people of what happened when Napoleon drafted the tallest men in France for his soldiers: future generations of shorter citizens!

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Dec 21, 2018

soldiers that hibernate, so they can travel to a distant planet (in the future) to fight with their enemy (which they have never met before).


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Apr 25, 2012

I was disgusted with the human race, disgusted with the army and horrified at the prospect of living with myself for another century or so... Well, there was always brain-wipe.


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