|Plot Summary of Old Man's War|
Tor, Jan 2005, 23.95, 316 pp.
When he turned seventy-five, earthling John Perry visits the grave site of his wife of forty-two years Kathy interred in an Arizona cemetery. He reflects how much he misses her, how he hates coming here, and that her last words dealt with finding vanilla as she was making pancakes when she died of a stroke. With nothing to keep him here, John abruptly decides to join the Colonial Defense Force struggling to defend or annex other worlds in deadly competition with alien races for control of a few hospitable planets.
As a recruit, John receives standard gear to include a much younger healthier body that is beyond the ability of most non government citizens to buy except the affluent. He makes buddies with his fellow soldiers. As his comrades die and collateral damage devastate civilian population, John begins questioning the war which enables a few to economically gain a lot at the cost of others even as he begins to ponder whether he is still human.
John Scalzi provides a tense anti-war military science fiction thriller that will leave fans pondering what is war good for. Readers will also wonder about who benefits from scientific advances and military operations and what actually a human is.
Harriet Klausner, Resident Scholar
|Review Analysis of Old Man's War|
Our unique search engine provides a wealth of detail about books by breaking them down into many different literary elements, all of which are searchable (click here).
Ratings are on a 1-10 scale (Low to High)
Composition of Book
Descript. of chases or violence - 10%
planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives - 20%
Feelings, relationships, character bio/development - 40%
Descript. of society, phenomena (tech), places - 30%
Tone of book
- suspenseful (sophisticated fear)
FANTASY or SCIENCE FICTION?
- science fiction story
War or Invasion
Major kinds of combat:
Kind of alteration:
- Given added abilities
Is this an adult or child's book?
- Adult or Young Adult Book
- infantry soldier
- long lived adults
How sensitive is this character?
- sensitive to others' feelings
Sense of humor
- Mostly serious with occasional humor
- Smarter than most other characters
- very athletic
- an entire race
How much of work is main antagonist actually present in:
- a moderate amount
- Very much smarter than other characters
- really, really giant spaceship/station
Takes place in spaceship?
- mostly 3rd
Accounts of torture and death?
- generic/vague references to death/punishment
scientific jargon? (SF only)
- some scientific explanation
How much dialogue?
- significantly more dialog than descript
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Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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