Book review - Moon is a harsh mistress

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I finally made myself read a classic sci-fi book and the choice fell on The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress by Robert A. Heinlein. I missed this writer somehow while I was growing up and reading all the books I could find left and right. I sure will seek out and read more of his work now.

The book hooked me with a story about a computer becoming so complex that it becomes self aware. As a programmer, the first chapter was funny as hell. But from there the computer was not the main plot line, but rather was a tool for a job, a mission, a purpose. And that was good, because there is only so many ways you can skin a cat in binary. Or make an AI make bad attempts at humor.

The core of the book is a much more interesting political struggle for independence. From use of a gravity well as a weapon to forming an ideal structure of a rebel organization, the book is just a phenomenal food for thought. In modern economic times the passages about how money is made and destroyed for political purposes might be interesting as well. Discussions about election systems and the actual role of government are timeless as well. It also has the best description of how an electromagnetic catapult can be used for space transport. If this book will not make you want to go and make an independent colony on the Moon (excuse me, Luna) then I don't know what will.

There are some Russian words and expressions used, such as 'gospozha' that yu should find the meaning of when you see them, to fully appreciate the feeling of the story, but that is about the only negative thing I can say about the book. The audiobook, that I also listened to was voiced with a Russian accent that helped to set the mood as well.

Most recommended to: computer geeks, revolution geeks, government basic structure geeks, space colonization geeks.

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