I’ve been reading the summer away, not blogging the summer away, thus I have not written about some of the Older Books I’ve read recently. I’ve been doing some genre older reading — pre-1970 Science Fiction! A lot of authors who wrote SciFi in the first two-thirds of the twentieth-century would be disappointed to know that in 2013 we do not have a moon colony, nor have we sent people to Mars. We barely have an occupied space station. But we DO have the internet. I’m not sure computers are quite sentient, but they can do lots of mind-reading sorts of things.
Back in the day, the grade school and high school day, Robert Heinlein was one of the SciFi authors I read. Starship Troopers was the one I particularly liked and revisited. I tried reading it again when the movie came out and found it not as I remembered it. Sigh. I have been reluctant to pick up Heinlein’s adult SciFi. I never got into it back in the day, only reading his books that were classified as Young Adult in the library. I think I might have glanced at The Moon is A Harsh Mistress and found it uninteresting, and didn’t really give it another chance until this summer. I listened to The Moon is A Harsh Mistress on a library audioebook. I quite enjoyed it. Stranger in a Strange Land was on the LOST list so I decided to hunt for that one as well. I found Stranger in a used bookshop and also enjoyed it.
Heinlein is a very political writer. I missed or blocked that about his books when I was in high school. Now I see it very clearly. I enjoyed the political games in The Moon is a Harsh Mistress very much. Stranger in a Strange Land also has some interesting politics. Stranger is, however, more religious than political. I’m still thinking about whether Heinlein was just mocking all religion, or whether he was proposing something new. I’m slightly inclined to the skewering/mocking side — I think that is what he’s doing. It is still a good book, weird theological things and all. Going back to Heinlein has been a pleasant experience. I’m glad I did.