The Forever War by Joe Haldeman

Joe Haldeman; Gollancz 2001


A future dystopian Earth wars with a distant alien enemy, causing conscripts to lose centuries while Earth ages months.


Joe Haldeman laid down a track that countless novelists followed. He concentrates on the meaningless of war, and describes space warfare efficiently and beautifully. The novel is also notable for the second thread of the story: the abstract view of a rapidly evolving Earth culture through the eyes of the protagonist. He finds himself a soldier protecting a culture that is no longer temporally, or ideologically, his own. Haldeman is a Vietnam war veteran, and it shows.


There aren’t any worth noting. Buy this book.


Winner – Nebula Award for best novel in 1975

Winner – Hugo Award for best novel in 1976

Winner – Locus Award for Best Science Fiction Novel in 1976

In the News:

In October 2008 it was announced that Ridley Scott will direct a feature film based onĀ The Forever War for Fox.

Similar Themes:

Old Man’s War by John Scalzi (war in space, effect of travel time)

A Canticle for Leibowitz by Walter M. Miller Jr. (Earth culture viewed over vast time periods)

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