Author: John Scalzi
Genre: Science Fiction
Length: 316 Pages
Release: January 2005
This book has been on my TBR for a couple of years now. I've heard so many great things about it from bloggers, youtubers, friends, and I knew I wanted to read it myself. Science Fiction is a genre that I've been wanting to read more widely, and this seemed like the perfect place to start. I was very excited to get started.
At first this book was great. I found the concept fascinating. We're sending old people to war! They become young again (maybe), but still. It was vastly different from the novels that are recruiting the very young to be their soldiers. So the beginning was very promising, we meet John who is heading into space to join the military, and through him are introduced to a nice group of fellow "Old Farts." But that's when things started to fall apart for me.
All of the characters had great introductions and I could see myself becoming very attached to them. Then nothing was done with them. There was little character development, really not that much of a plot, and the entire story kind of plodded along. I was expecting something more from this.
The various characters, alien races, and technology were fascinating to think about, the story just never took things to the next level to make them relatable or great. It felt more like a detached observation of a man's life as he starts something new. Even the moments that should have been emotionally charged felt empty.
Part of the issue could have been the age of the characters. While it was an interesting idea to have an army of 75-year-olds, Scalzi might have felt that he couldn't have them go through the trials that a younger person would have faced, since they, presumably, had already learned those lessons. But having a cast of characters that were too mature and too set in their ways made the story very dry and hard to relate with.
This was one of my most anticiapted planned reads for the year, so I am disappointed to say that I did not enjoy it. I would like to give John Scalzi another chance, but I don't think I will be delving back into the Old Man's War series.