Forever Peace Mass Market Paperback – Oct 1 1998
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Julian Class is a full-time professor and part-time combat veteran who spends a third of each month virtually wired to a robotic "soldierboy." The soldierboys, along with flyboys and other advanced constructs, allow the U.S. to wage a remotely controlled war against constant uprisings in the Third World. The conflicts are largely driven by the so-called First World countries' access to nanoforges--devices that can almost instantly manufacture any product imaginable, given the proper raw materials--and the Third World countries' lack of access to these devices. But even as Julian learns that the consensual reality shared by soldierboy operators can lead to universal peace, the nanoforges create a way for humanity to utterly destroy itself, and it will be a race against time to see which will happen first. Although Forever Peace bears a title similar to Joe Haldeman's classic novel The Forever War, he says it's not a sequel. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Library Journal
Veteran sf writer Haldeman views this novel not as a continuation of but as a follow-up to the problems raised in his highly acclaimed 1975 novel, Forever War. In the Universal Welfare State in 2043, draftees and volunteers link their brains to "soldierboy" war machines that do the actual fighting hundreds of miles away. Black physics professor and linked draftee Julian Class; his white mentor and lover, Dr. Amelia Harding; and her colleague Peter discover that the high-profile Jupiter Project is about to re-create the Big Bang that will destroy the solar system. The original 20 survivors of an experiment to link brains via implanted jacks discover they can turn people into pacifists by linking them for two weeks. Together with Julian and Amelia, the group stays one jump ahead of assassins as they try to stop the project and pacify key figures. At once a hard science, military, and political thriller, this book presents a thoughtful and hopeful solution to ending war in the 21st century. Essential for sf collections.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
getting back to 'Forever Peace'. fast forward to some 20 years on i read it after 'Forever War' which i first came across on a dark horse comic publication. this was a long time ago - about 4 years ago. so what business do i have writing a review about it now? i can talk about the impression FP had on me just like AMSR did. like drinking good hot coffee.
the message is often the same: the numbing senselessness of war on the very immediate personnal level. fighters fought because they had to. call it fate or karma. there is often no right or wrong but there are the fortunate and the unfortunate, the quick and the dead, the smart and the stupid, and caught in between the rough stuffs and the really rough stuffs is love, um, isn't it like in the office this morning? maybe not and well, i'm not a soldier but i don't have to be one to appreciate books on the subject or know what the writer is saying.
The story of "Forever Peace" centers on a full-time college professor and part-time combat soldier named Julian Class. Julian is part of a new breed of soldier that doesn't physically fight the battles themselves. Through robotic and biological advancements that bear many similarities to the methods used in the "Matrix" movies, soldiers are now operators whose minds are 'plugged-in' to the warrior-robot machines (called 'Soldierboys') they control and the platoon members they control these robots with. While not putting the soldiers in any imminent physical danger, the control of the Soldierboys does bring about the high risk of mental and emotional wounds. These Soldierboys are used primarily to put down uprisings in Third World countries. These uprisings are caused primarily by conflicts over control of a technology called nanoforges, which are machines capable of designing and creating almost any physical product necessary for survival and prosperity. In the midst of the strife caused by uprisings, there is also the planned unveiling of the most ambitious and massive scientific experiment ever conceived.Read more ›
1) SETTING - the story takes place in 2043 a.d. on Earth. There are references to space travel, but the entire drama and story take place on an Earth where political forces are at war in every country. Thus a world at war with itself is believable. Also, Haldeman employs scientific advances that are reminiscent of cyberpunk stories like Neuromancer and the like.
2) CHARACTERS - Julian Class and Dr. Amelia Harding are the two protagonists. Characters are likeable and flawed. Julian is mostly flawed due to the society he has grown up in, the job he has been recruited to and the challenges of changing it all. But he moves forward amidst his flaws which makes him likeable. The overall cast is interesting, but don't get involved much.Read more ›
We first jump the tracks when our hero leaves the soldier-boy life behind and his academic pursuits which were just a side-plot become the whole plot. It appears there may be a world destroying experiment about to run.
We again jump the tracks and the world destroying experiment goes back to being a secondary plot point in favor of a ludicrous idea to "humanize" the world by linking everyone together to prevent them from being able to kill, or even be aggressive. In some ways this is like Stand on Zanzibar by Brunner, but it is more sinister, like Invasion of the Body Snatchers, but the Body Snatchers are the heroes. Haldeman here returns to the idea of Hive-Mind, or Communal Society that he presented as being bad in Forever War and Forever Free, here though it appears that brief patches of being part of a group mind essentially neuter a species violent impulses.
Putting my issues about the ridiculousness of the plot, and it's philosphy aside the book still fails after leaving the soldier boy plot on other levels. Other reviewers have mentioned it goes from being a good war story, to a spy story. As a spy story it is third rate, not fleshed out properly and filled with bumbling characters.
I was a huge fan of the Forever War, now after this book and Forever Free, I fear I may be Forever Finished with Haldeman.
Three stars for this book, because the first third was quite good.
Most recent customer reviews
Good writing, great pace but the ending is terrible. I do not like to spend hours reading a book and realize at that the author just did not know how to finish that story.Published on May 17 2013 by Sebastien Bouchard
FOREVER PEACE started off great - the first half set up an interesting world and protagonist. But half way through it turned into a conspiracy thriller and it lost me. Read morePublished on Feb. 16 2013 by f.v.
When I first started to read this novel I was getting interested in the beginning up to the halfway mark. Then a really good twist to the novel that makes me want to read more. Read morePublished on June 11 2012 by Andres
The main character is a soldier in the not so distant future. The world is primarily split between the developed countries and the have-nots. Read morePublished on July 19 2004
We've all read (or seen movies about) insidious conspiracies in which some sort of sinister force starts taking over people's minds. Read morePublished on June 13 2004 by Amazon Customer
I have never read Haldeman before. The only thing I knew he is considered a good writer, so I decided to read a sf novel from a good author. Read morePublished on June 9 2004 by JEO
I am a big fan of THE FOREVER WAR, but this "prequel" is highly disappointing, especially if you were expecting much more (like me) based on your love of WAR. Read morePublished on Jan. 25 2004 by Dave Huber