The forever war

The Forever War - Joe Haldeman I had read this years ago, and after rereading it this year, I remember how good this novel was. Yes, I am aware that Haldeman was writing this in part as a response to the Vietnam War and all that other academic interest. But this is just a very good science fiction novel as well. It is fast paced once it gets going, and it is a very quick and easy read. Haldeman does well in character development, especially looking at Mandela's character who goes from private to major in the space of a few years, or a lot of centuries, depending on who's counting on what calendar. This is thanks to the wonders of time dilation and space travel. There is some science and physics involved, but it is just the right amount to make the novel work and give us the image of a soldier who stays eternal and fights on. If you have not read it, I will not reveal the ending, which is not only interesting, but it makes a nice twist. The novel also makes some interesting social commentaries including issues such as evolution of the human race and even heterosexuality and homosexuality. If you don't read it for the adventure, you may be interested in those angles of the book. I think the novel, given the current war on terror, gains a new relevancy, and that may be another reason to read (or reread) the novel. It is a classic of science fiction, an award winner, and if you read it, you'll see why.