I've known about this book for literally decades, but it took me until this week for me to actually read it. What a great book!
Back in the 1970s when Dungeons & Dragons hit some other games hit the market in hopes of repeating their success. One game company made games based on books. I actually purchased the board game of Starship Troopers and I think I even played it once. I tried looking for it once in my mom's basement, but it got tossed years ago. Too bad--it's probably a collector's item now.
The next time I heard of the story was when the film came out. Yes, I watched it--it was gory, campy and gratuitous--definitely over the top. So when the book came available at the library, I thought I had a pretty good idea of what the story was about.
I was wrong.
I'm glad I was wrong.
Yes, the book had some elements that were in the movie, but the book was so much better! What I liked most about the book was the way it focused mostly on the soldier and what someone fighting aliens in the future would go through. Yes, there were the battles with the bugs, but that mostly came about near the end of the book. I appreciated the way Heinlein crafted his world first, then put us in the battles. It added perspective so when the troops went to war, the reader was educated to the environment.
Heinlein's one of the pioneers in science fiction writing. And since there's such a dust up concerning the Hugo Awards this year (and a little last year, too...), I was excited to read this book. Much has been written about Robert Heinlein and hypothetical questions have been asked such as, "If Robert A. Heinlein were alive to day, would he have won a Hugo Award, or the other awards he won?"
To me, it really doesn't matter, especially after reading Starship Troopers. An award is given after a great work is produced. Some argue Heinlein would not have won awards if he lived and wrote today. Be that as it may, he hit a home run with this one.