Told through the eyes of Starship Trooper Johnny Rico, Robert A. Heinlein’s classic story of war and warriors is set 5000 years in the future.
Not sure why I felt like I needed to reach this again, other than it popped up to the top of my Kindle list for some reason. It’s still one of the best military science fiction stories with nearly a third of the book taking place in boot camp and really only having a single real combat story element, but it’s tightly written and the world is so well made that I didn’t even notice that last part until it was all over. There’s some real unfortunate stuff in the book though, I’ve not done a lot of research on if these were Heinlein’s actual thoughts on politics, but the book is solidly in the facist camp, with a firm opinion that it’s the loss of corporal punishment on both a parental and societal level that’s caused all the modern issues of crime and social decay. With hindsight we can see that when this book was written in 1959 that crime was really just getting started, so I wonder how he would feel knowing the huge spike would be happening in just 20 or 30 years later, then having a massive drop to way below the 50’s levels, all because we opened abortion access and stopped mainlining leaded gasoline?
After reading this, I can see how John Scalzi’s “Old Man’s War” did so well with all those elements removed and a more modern humanity depicted. In fact, I actually recommend OMW over Starship Troopers these days, if only because Scalzi’s version has actual green little men in it.