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View Full Version : Why Didn't Anybody Tell Me There Was A "New" Heinlein Book Coming Out?


listopencil
05-22-2006, 11:33 PM
12:00 AM, 10-MAY-06 Variable Carries Heinlein's Star

Multiple award-winning SF author Spider Robinson told SCI FI Wire that he recently completed Variable Star, a novel based on a detailed outline created by the late legendary SF author Robert A. Heinlein in 1955. "Variable Star is the story of a young man so unlucky in love that it drove him clear out of the solar system, ... and then that turned out to be the good news," Robinson said in an interview. "Most of it takes place in a starship on an 85-light-year journey."

Heinlein's outline consisted of seven typed, single-spaced, 10-pica pages with almost no margins, as well as dozens of index cards with handwritten notes, Robinson said. "Regrettably, the seventh page ends in the middle of a sentence: There's no way of knowing how many pages have been lost forever. I had to come up with the ending," Robinson said. "Thank heaven, Robert's executor, Art Dula, took me aside early on and said, 'I do not want your best Rich Little impression of Robert. Take this outline and write the best Spider Robinson novel you can.' That was a huge relief."

After the death of Virginia Heinlein in 2002, Heinlein archivist Bill Patterson found the outline among Heinlein's papers, Robinson said. "[The discovery was] announced ... at the 2003 Worldcon, at which I was toastmaster, on a panel I attended. A woman named Kate Gladstone shouted, 'You should get Spider Robinson to finish that book,' and people applauded," he said. (Further details are available in the afterword to the novel.)

Robinson said that "everything" about Heinlein's work inspires him. "The first book I ever read in my life, handed to me by a librarian named Ruth Siegel when I was 6, was Rocket Ship Galileo," he said. "The next dozen were all also Heinleins. He's my template for good storytelling." To have had this chance to collaborate, albeit posthumously, with Heinlein meant more to Robinson than words can convey, he said. "All I owe Robert is everything," he said. "To be asked to get his very last egg safely down to the ground without dropping it was terrifying and humbling and exhilarating beyond description. Perhaps I was crazy to even try itóbut like most of us, I wanted to read a new Heinlein novel so badly I didn't care if I had to write half of it myself. Pulling it offóand I feel I haveówas the warmest pleasure of my career to date."


Tor will publish Variable Star in September. Also in September, Baen Books will release both the mass-market edition of Robinson's latest solo novel, Very Bad Deaths, and The Stardance Trilogy, a hardcover omnibus collecting the novels Stardance, Starseed and Starmind, which Robinson co-authored with his wife, Jeanne. Also on the horizon is another collaboration (of sorts) with Heinlein: Blackstone Audiobooks has hired Robinson to narrate the audiobook editions of Variable Star and Heinlein's Rocket Ship Galileo. óJohn Joseph Adams


http://www.scifi.com/scifiwire/index.php?category=5&id=35964



Holy crap! I've got to get this book!

Ultra Peanut
05-23-2006, 03:17 AM
We hates you.

listopencil
05-23-2006, 03:41 AM
We hates you.



What? No love for RAH?

keg in kc
05-23-2006, 03:42 AM
Had no idea.

Just finished (re)reading The Moon is a Harsh Mistress and Stranger in a Strange Land.

listopencil
05-23-2006, 03:50 AM
I just stumbled across this while goofing around. I've read every one of his books over and over again. We lost a great American writer when he passed away. I'd put him up there with Samuel Clemens.

Miles
05-23-2006, 03:55 AM
Never read any of his stuff but I am haven't exactly read all that much in the genre, even though I usually enjoy it. Any suggestions of what to start with?

listopencil
05-23-2006, 04:03 AM
Never read any of his stuff but I am haven't exactly read all that much in the genre, even though I usually enjoy it. Any suggestions of what to start with?


Orphans Of The Sky is a good quick read that will introduce you to his style. I'm very fond of Starship Troopers. Friday is a good one too. If you want to spend some time reading I would suggest Time Enough for Love, Stranger In A Strange Land and Job. The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress is another favorite of mine.

listopencil
05-23-2006, 04:06 AM
If you read them in chronological order of publication you will find that most of his novels fit into an artificial universe that he created. One of my favorites is one of his many "juvenile" titles-Red Planet. Read that one before Stranger In A Strange Land if you can. To Sail Beyond The Sunset and Number Of The Beast are good ones to read after you've already burned through most of his work. Hell, just do what I did-read all of them.

listopencil
05-23-2006, 04:08 AM
Oh yeah...Star Beast. That's another well written juvenile. Also Citizen Of The Galaxy and Between Planets. Hmmm...just go to a used paperback store and grab as many as you can find. They're hard to find because no one wants to get rid of them.

Count Alex's Losses
05-23-2006, 04:09 AM
Have Spacesuit Will Travel

Starman Jones

listopencil
05-23-2006, 04:10 AM
Have Spacesuit Will Travel

Starman Jones



Yep. Both highly entertaining.

listopencil
05-23-2006, 04:13 AM
The man was incredibly creative and sharp as a razor. I've only found one obvious logical error in any of his books.

Miles
05-23-2006, 04:13 AM
Oh yeah...Star Beast. That's another well written juvenile. Also Citizen Of The Galaxy and Between Planets. Hmmm...just go to a used paperback store and grab as many as you can find. They're hard to find because no one wants to get rid of them.

I have a used book store near me that usually has a lot of autors that do not typically last long at them. I might go have a look soon.

listopencil
05-23-2006, 04:14 AM
I have a used book store near me that usually has a lot of autors that do not typically last long at them. I might go have a look soon.


I would snag any Heinlein books you see there, especially the older ones if you've never read any.

Braincase
05-23-2006, 06:33 AM
Have Spacesuit Will Travel

Starman Jones

HSWT was one of my first sci-fi experiences, along with some of the Andre Norton juvey sci-fi (I figure I was in 4th or 5th grade).

Save Number of the Beast, Cat Who Walks Through Walls, and Sail Beyond the Sunset for the last... get in Time Enough for Love whenever your schedule can accomodate.

Ultra Peanut
05-23-2006, 08:28 AM
What? No love for RAH?That was our reasoning for not telling you, preciousssss...

burt
05-23-2006, 08:34 AM
Had no idea.

Just finished (re)reading The Moon is a Harsh Mistress and Stranger in a Strange Land.

Stranger in a Strange Land...I hadn't thought about that book in years.....used to be one of my top 3....... Thanks for the flashback

Sydd
05-23-2006, 10:01 AM
The Moon is a Harsh Mistress , Starship Troopers, and The Cat Who Walks Through Walls are three of my favorite books. I also really like the Lazarus series: Methuselah's Childeren, Time Enough for Love, The Number for the Beast, Cat, and To Sail Beyond the Sunset. I would recommend not reading Stranger in a Strange Land or Time Enough for Love until you have read some of the books others suggested first. I know people who were put off by RAH's writing style by readig those books first.

Other RAH favorites of mine: Friday, The Puppet Masters (awful movie, amazing book, same as Starship Troopers), They, Job - A Comedy of Justice, and I Will Fear No Evil.

I could go on about RAH books all day. You can probably tell he is my favorite author. The way he could change his writing style to fit the book was amazing. If you read The Number of the Beast, wait until you get to the party scene, then do some research about who was at the party. Or, read The Moon is a Harsh Mistress and see how the whole book is written in Loonie (language of the people who had migrated to the moon (mostly by force)).

ChiefFripp
05-23-2006, 10:06 AM
The Number of the Beast was a tedious read for the most part.

Sydd
05-23-2006, 10:13 AM
The Number of the Beast was a tedious read for the most part.


Yes, it was kind of a difficult read, but the party scene made up for it in my opinion. He wrote this book after taking a decade off due to illness. Severe artery that reduced blood to the brain, and a serious case of peritonitis. Not his best work, but worth the read if you are going through all the Lazarus books.

ChiefFripp
05-23-2006, 10:16 AM
Yes, it was kind of a difficult read, but the party scene made up for it in my opinion. He wrote this book after taking a decade off due to illness. Severe artery that reduced blood to the brain, and a serious case of peritonitis. Not his best work, but worth the read if you are going through all the Lazarus books.
They got very incestrous on that ship,lol.

Sydd
05-23-2006, 11:57 AM
They got very incestrous on that ship,lol.

That seemed to happen in quite a few of his novels. Heinlein had a strange outlook on sex. Look at who Lazarus ends up with in Time Enough for Love.

Adept Havelock
05-24-2006, 10:13 PM
Very good news. I've been a fan since "The day after tomorrow" aka "Sixth Column". The Moon is a Harsh Mistress is a favorite, with Revolt in 2100 and Job: A Comedy of Justice close behind.

I can't believe no one here mentioned his most un P-C work, Farnham's Freehold! "Pork" sandwich, anyone? :D

Sydd, the "Loonie" language concept was nicely evoked by a contemporary of Heinlein's. Try the novel "A Clockwork Orange" if you've never read it. I think Burgess must have been a bit inspired by the Bard from Butler. Also try "Riddley Walker".

I can think of no one who deserves the honor of finishing this work more than Spider.

TANSTAAFL!

unlurking
05-24-2006, 10:19 PM
I'd really like to read the 7 page outline and note cards. Give an interesting perspective into his writing.

ChiefaRoo
05-24-2006, 10:24 PM
Have Spacesuit Will Travel

Starman Jones


Starship Troopers was a good read but man the movie stunk so bad I walked out 20 minutes into it. I wouldn't of stayed that long but Denise Richards looked yummy.

Sydd
05-24-2006, 11:05 PM
Sydd, the "Loonie" language concept was nicely evoked by a contemporary of Heinlein's. Try the novel "A Clockwork Orange" if you've never read it. I think Burgess must have been a bit inspired by the Bard from Butler. Also try "Riddley Walker".

TANSTAAFL!

I actually have not read any of those. I will have to give them a look.

listopencil
05-24-2006, 11:46 PM
I can't believe no one here mentioned his most un P-C work, Farnham's Freehold! "Pork" sandwich, anyone? :D



TANSTAAFL!


Shoot, there are so many great ones I can't remember them all at once. Farnham's Freehold was another great one. I have a collection of my father's that I picked up from his house when he passed away and I just read that one for the millionth time again this last Winter.

Rausch
05-25-2006, 12:00 AM
Farnham's Freehold is one of 5 books I can honestly say changed my whole world-view.

The science in this sci-fi is shat but I have yet to see a more convincing social/racial commentary on modern America...

keg in kc
05-25-2006, 12:02 AM
I enjoyed Farnham's Freehold, but after re-reading The Moon is a Harsh Mistress, I'd have to say that's my favorite Heinlein by a pretty wide margin.

listopencil
05-25-2006, 12:21 AM
Farnham's Freehold is one of 5 books I can honestly say changed my whole world-view.

The science in this sci-fi is shat but I have yet to see a more convincing social/racial commentary on modern America...



Which is pretty damn good considering my book is copyrighted 1964.

listopencil
05-25-2006, 01:34 AM
Here's a (complete?) list of novels:

* --For Us, the Living-- (1937)
* Sixth Column(aka The Day after Tomorrow) (1941)
* Beyond This Horizon (1942)
* Rocket Ship Galileo (1947)
* Space Cadet (1948)
* Red Planet (1949)
* Farmer in the Sky (1950)
* Between Planets (1951)
* The Puppet Masters (1951)
* The Rolling Stones(aka Tramp Space Ship, aka Space Family Stone) (1952)
* Starman Jones (1953)
* The Star Beast (aka Star Lummox) (1954)
* Tunnel in the Sky (1955)
* Double Star (1956)
* Time for the Stars (1956)
* The Door into Summer (1956)
* Citizen of the Galaxy (1957)
* Have Space Suit, Will Travel (1958)
* Starship Troopers (aka Starship Soldier) (1959)
* Stranger in a Strange Land (1961)
* Podkayne of Mars (1962)
* Glory Road (1963)
* Farnham's Freehold (1964)
* The Moon is a Harsh Mistress (1965)
* I Will Fear No Evil (1970)
* Time Enough for Love (1973)
* The Number of the Beast (1979)
* Friday (1982)
* Job: A Comedy of Justice (1984)
* The Cat Who Walks Through Walls (1985)
* To Sail Beyond the Sunset (1987)

Rausch
05-25-2006, 01:45 AM
Which is pretty damn good considering my book is copyrighted 1964.

I know that was meant as an insult but it should be considered a testament to his ability to empathize...

burt
05-25-2006, 01:47 AM
I know that was meant as an insult but it should be considered a testament to his ability to empathize...

Stranger in a Strange Land had a great philosophy.....

listopencil
05-25-2006, 01:52 AM
I know that was meant as an insult but it should be considered a testament to his ability to empathize...


An insult? No I was commenting on RAH's ability to create stories. The guy was freaking brilliant. Did you read Stranger In a Strange Land? I remember reading a blurb where he said he held that book back for quite a while because he didn't think people were ready for it. He finally released it...in 1961! I find that amazing.

burt
05-25-2006, 01:53 AM
An insult? No I was commenting on RAH's ability to create stories. The guy was freaking brilliant. Did you read Stranger In a Strange Land? I remember reading a blurb where he said he held that book back for quite a while because he didn't think people were ready for it. He finally released it...in 1961! I find that amazing.

I didn't really like Job tho......

listopencil
05-25-2006, 01:56 AM
I didn't really like Job tho......

I thought the end was a bit tedious with its description of Heaven but overall I enjoyed the book.

burt
05-25-2006, 01:58 AM
I thought the end was a bit tedious with its description of Heaven but overall I enjoyed the book.

Well written, but just a bit tooooo much out there....

Rausch
05-25-2006, 01:59 AM
Farnham's Freehold is his opus to $#it not being the way it should be.

It used cold war paranoia and sci-fi to drag readers in to the present thinking it was the future.

A brilliant use of genre, which is pretty much his genius...

Sydd
05-25-2006, 09:50 AM
Here's a (complete?) list of novels:



Here is a good site with an almost complete list.

http://www.nitrosyncretic.com/rah/rahpubs.html