enhanced] DD-B

Book Note: John Scalzi, Old Man's War

I read this book about 8/21/2013. This is the first time I've read this book. The book is copyright 2005. This note was last modified Sunday, 25-Aug-2013 13:00:03 PDT.

This note does not contain major spoilers for the book.


Been meaning to read this since it came out. Finally read it. Probably because I got a free ebook version and could read it on my phone, instead of having to lug a pile of dead tree around. (There are multiple paper copies in the household.)

This was indeed very good (being so far behind getting to it, I'd heard a lot about its reputation before I dove in).

Although I don't get why Colonial Defense Forces recruit only old people on Earth. Given how much they're going to rebuild the bodies, I see why those are acceptable, but why not recruit on the colonies also? Similarly, why do the Ghost Brigades use only dead people's DNA? Why not any DNA they like, and why not make multiple soldiers from the same DNA? These seem like fake mysteries.

I'm not convinced that wars are always fought with the minimum possible resources, as the drill sergeant claims. We certainly didn't do WWII that way! Or WWIII either (okay, we never fought it, but we did build the tools.)

Some of the alien species are great; particularly the Consu, who could wipe us all out but love us too much to do so, though they do also despise us enough to dump the dome they built for the meeting into a black hole when we've left so the atoms won't pollute their planet any further.

Also, the drive to colonization is population-based, which may not be very realistic post-demographic transition.


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David Dyer-Bennet