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Between Planets (1951)

por Robert A. Heinlein

Outros autores: Ver a secção outros autores.

Séries: Heinlein Juveniles (5)

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1,867259,100 (3.6)54
When Don Harvey's parents abruptly summon him from school on Earth to join them on Mars he has no idea he's about to be plunged into a deadly interplanetary intrigue. But from the moment he begins his journey he finds himself the subject of intense - and possibly deadly - scrutiny. Things only get worse when the ship Don is traveling on is unexpectedly diverted to Venus, where the colony has launched a revolution against Earth's control...… (mais)
Adicionado recentemente porbiblioteca privada, jcm790, GeekLair, dwagon17, alareth1976, DarrylSTindall, Glitch610, DamonR, beskamiltar
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OK, everyone seems to love this one, but I didn't. Mark does a good job of explaining what I liked about it: It's another coming-of-age told from the point of view of a boy who is growing up and finding his place in the world (or in the Solar System, in this case). While the basic premise is the same, Heinlein keeps things fresh by finding new kinds of stories. In the last book (Farmer in the Sky) we had settlers/pioneers. This one is a tale of war and espionage. There's a lot of action, the required romantic interest, secret messages, space ships... I also appreciated how much the main character grew up and changed in this one. By the end of the book he is basically a different person, an adult rather than the boy he was at the beginning.

The war that had been foreshadowed in previous books is finally here, and the two sides are Earth (or the Federation) and the newly-declared Venus Republic. For Heinlein, Venus here represents the Thirteen Colonies that declared independence and became the US, while the Federation represents... well, the oppressive colonial power (think the British Empire) mixed with some of the libertarian Heinlein's favorite enemy, the government that becomes so big and successful that it removes people's freedom. Heinlein takes it for granted that our sympathies will also be unquestionably with Venus, but I take a much more cynical view of war.

The book seemed to me heavy-handed from a political point of view, taking sides too uncritically and, what's worse, it affects the quality of the story. It really strained my suspension of disbelief at times. For example, we have the space station orbiting Earth that functions as a passenger hub for all people arriving and leaving earth and, at the same time, for storing all the Earth's atomic weapons. Don't even ask why the Federation would want all its weapons stored at the same place, where it can easily be destroyed or taken by a surprise attack and, in case the security nightmare isn't bad enough, the base serves also as a very busy passenger hub, which the enemy can get to without raising suspicions! Really, that whole thing is very convenient for the story Heinlein wanted to tell, but it's so absurd that it took me right out of the story for a long while. The scientific part of it was also very hand-wavy and implausible. Scientific progress just does not work that way.

The romance is more wish-fulfillment than a real relationship, because Isobel is not allowed to show an ounce of personality, other than instant devotion and loyalty. Perhaps here this is more noticeable than usual, but to be fair this is a problem with more than one of these juveniles. Developing a romantic interest is part of growing up for most people so it seems right to have some of that in a coming-of-age story like this, but to do it justice you need to spend a lot of time on it, and Heinlein's readers were interested in action and science fiction, not in romance.

I found it a bit more difficult to like Don Harvey than other of Heinlein's boy protagonists. He is just so eager to fight in the war (and, as an unavoidable consequence, kill enemies). Even after finding out what war is like he is still eager. One could argue that in Space Cadet, which I liked a lot, the main character is also training to be part of a military organization, but in Between Planets everything seemed to me much more ideologically charged, while the Space Patrol seemed more benign and high-minded (and its mission was to prevent war, not to start it).

And speaking of the Space Patrol, where the hell is it? We commented that these books seemed to be set in the same Solar System, with some small inconsistencies natural in a series of books like this, but this one is huge: the mission of the Space Patrol would be to prevent this war, and in this novel they are not even mentioned. Even in Farmer in the Sky, which took place in a completely out-of-the-way Jovian satellite, they were mentioned, but here they do not seem to exist. What's up with that?

So, all in all, I appreciated Heinlein's virtues, but his flaws seemed too noticeable to me here, and I did not love this one. These books are all quite short and fast to read, though, so that's an advantage when you are not loving the story. ( )
  jcm790 | May 26, 2024 |
Between Planets was Heinlein's second novel published in 1951 and seems to have been aimed at a young adult market. It is an adventure story set sometime in the not too distant future when man has colonised Venus and Mars. Don Harvey a space born teenager is at school on earth, he was brought up on Venus, but his parents who are scientist work on Mars. Don is in his final year at school when he receives an urgent recall from his parents to join them on Mars. He is instructed to meet a scientist friend of theirs before he boards the space rocket. There is talk of a war between the colonists on Venus and mother planet earth. Don is given a ring by the scientist who then disappears in mysterious circumstances, Don struggles to catch his ship to Mars which is anyway diverted after a space station is blown up. Don ends up on Venus where sundry characters take an unusual interest in his ring. Don's main characteristic is his stubbornness, which gets him in and out of trouble.

Featuring a teenage hero puts the book in the young adult market, but Heinlein's story runs smoothly enough with a well written plot. Don grows up when he is forced into military service on Mars and finds himself at the centre of an espionage story when he is hunted for his ring. A Venusian landscape of swamps, thick fog and mud banked lagoons provide a suitable territory for a hunt and the highly intelligent Venusian dragons add spice to an interesting story. An enjoyable read with no overt racism or sexism. 3 stars. ( )
  baswood | Oct 9, 2023 |
Between Planets
By: Robert A. Heinlein
Narrated by: Andrew Eiden

Don was born in free fall. Not on Earth, or Mars, or Venus. He's mom was born on Venus and his dad from Earth. When the book starts, Don starts on Earth at a school but he has lived on Venus before. He gets a message to get to Mars now! There's a war coming. Venus and the Federation (Earth) were about go at it. The message said to stop and say goodbye to his uncle first. He doesn't have an uncle but his parents have a friend so he assumes it means him.

This is where things get crazy! He gives a ring to Don to bring to his parents. Now, everyone is after him! The war starts and he can't get to Mars but he makes it to Venus. On the way he meets a dragon and saved his life. Comes to find out he is someone very important. He speaks dragon from living on Venus before.

It's an exciting and fun book! A rebellion, friendships, honor, and it has plenty of action! Loved it! Read it as a kid and enjoyed it again now that I'm old! ( )
  MontzaleeW | May 29, 2021 |
A bit of a divergence in the Scribern's Juvenile "series" The martins described here are significantly different than the one's described in the earlier "red planet"

Our protagonist Don is almost ready to graduate from his remote private high school but is summoned away to Mars apparently to avoid a pending war. As a space born with no allegiance to any particular planet it seems best.

On the way to Mars the venetian rebels take over.

Don ends up going to Venus and trying to make ends meet as a dishwasher and falls in love with the girl at the Telegraph shop.

The romance is the best part of this. The Native Venetian dragons are also interesting, but for the most part it is an evil war story. ( )
  fulner | Mar 29, 2021 |
Another delightful Heinlein juvenile. Compulsively readable, picked it up when by 10 year old finished, and then blazed through it. As with much Heinlein, both shallow/light (interplanetary war! talking dragons! lost civilizations!) and surprisingly deep. I can't recall a kids book from the past decade where characters matter-of-factly accept that you need to kill yourself before being captured by the secret police. ( )
  ben_a | Mar 28, 2021 |
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» Adicionar outros autores (30 possíveis)

Nome do autorPapelTipo de autorObra?Estado
Heinlein, Robert A.autor principaltodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Bal, RuudTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Burns, JimArtista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Eiden, AndrewNarradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Fonseca, EuricoTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Freitas, Lima deArtista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Gabrielsson, BjörnTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Geary, CliffordArtista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Holmberg, John-HenriPosfácioautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Kukalis, RomasArtista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Nagel, HeinzTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Patterson, WilliamIntroduçãoautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Savage, SteeleIlustradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Savage, SteeleArtista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Sweet, DarrellIlustradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Sweet, Darrell K.Artista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Taylor, TravisPrefácioautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
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When Don Harvey's parents abruptly summon him from school on Earth to join them on Mars he has no idea he's about to be plunged into a deadly interplanetary intrigue. But from the moment he begins his journey he finds himself the subject of intense - and possibly deadly - scrutiny. Things only get worse when the ship Don is traveling on is unexpectedly diverted to Venus, where the colony has launched a revolution against Earth's control...

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