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Armor – tekijä: John Steakley
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Armor (vuoden 1984 painos)

– tekijä: John Steakley

JäseniäKirja-arvostelujaSuosituimmuussijaKeskimääräinen arvioMaininnat
1,481419,014 (3.84)37
The planet is called Banshee where the air is unbreathable and the water poisonous. It is the home of the most implacable enemies that humanity has ever encountered. Felix is a scout in A-team Two and highly competent, he is the sole survivor of mission after mission. Yet he is a man consumed by fear and hatred, and is protected not only by his custom-fitted body armor, the culmination of ten thousand years of the armorers' craft, but also by an odd being which seems to live with him, a cold killing machine he calls "the Engine."… (lisätietoja)
Jäsen:mike61n94w
Teoksen nimi:Armor
Kirjailijat:John Steakley
Info:DAW (1984), Mass Market Paperback, 432 pages
Kokoelmat:Oma kirjasto, Sci-Fi (World Builder), Total Immersion
Arvio (tähdet):***
Avainsanoja:science fiction, sci-fi, military, aliens, human situations, conflict, war, survival, mechanical armor, Banshee, Antwar, combat, courage, psychology, exobiology, dual plotline, human perspective

Teoksen tarkat tiedot

Armor (tekijä: John Steakley)

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    RASinfo: Perfect read for the story and ideas of the same theme.
  3. 10
    Redliners (tekijä: David Drake) (TomWaitsTables)
  4. 00
    Death's Head (tekijä: David Gunn) (crazybatcow)
    crazybatcow: Both are military sci-fi with mature themes and a protagonist you might not like but who kicks butt anyway.
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Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 41) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
Armor started very strong as a mashup of the classis Starship Troopers and the Forever War. The characters are believable and react very naturally to the things going on around them. And when they don't, well, that forms the heart of the mystery that lies at the heart of the book. The story is told in two twining narratives which fuse at the very end in a reveal that is the payoff of the entire mystery.

Unfortunately, the payoff is pretty monumentally underwhelming. The twist is pretty obvious during the entire time so one can spend nearly the entire last half of the book just watching the author coyly approach it then shy away. Thats actually more entertaining than it sounds so its not a total loss. But it started out so strongly that the disappointment at watching the story slip from the author is all the more poignant.

Recommended if you are looking for a afternoon's filler fun, but go back to the originals if you want the real thing. ( )
  frfeni | Jan 31, 2021 |
It is difficult to think of a science fiction author who built up more of a following from fewer books than John Steakley. Though he published only two novels in his lifetime, both of them proved successful, with one of them – the novel Vampire$ – subsequently adapted into a 1997 movie directed by John Carpenter.

Yet it is Steakley’s first novel which enjoys the more devoted audience. It consists of two intertwined stories, both of which center around men thrust into circumstances beyond their control. In the first of them, a man named Felix is part of an army of battlesuit-wearing soldiers participating in an invasion of an alien world nicknamed Banshee. Despite their technologically-enhanced strength and speed, the human forces quickly find themselves overwhelmed by the sheer number of “ants” – insect-like enemies of implacable ferocity that sacrifice themselves by the thousands in their battles against the enemy. The second story takes place four years later and is centered around Jack Crow, a legendary pirate who agrees to help a ruthless brigand attack a military research base in order to obtain their energy source. As Crow insinuates himself among the researchers, he grapples with his conscience and a situation that proves far more complicated than he expected.

Given these elements, it’s easy to see why Steakley’s novel is often compared to Robert Heinlein’s classic work Starship Troopers. Yet this is an unfair comparison, especially as Steakley’s novel is a far superior book to Heinlein’s in so many respects. Unlike Heinlein, who used his story as a vehicle for his views on politics, Steakley focuses instead upon the psychological impact of war upon people. Much of this can be seen as both a product of, and a commentary on, America’s experience with the Vietnam War, which was barely a decade in the past when Steakley’s novel was originally published in 1984. This is most evident in his depiction of the Antwar, in which technologically superior human forces fighting an enormous distance from their home in an inhospitable environment are consistently defeated by determined foes willing to absorb enormous casualties in order to defeat the invaders.

While Felix’s experiences in the Antwar form the core of the novel, however, it is Jack Crow who most clearly embodies the author’s perspective. Though Gary Stu-ish in terms of his abilities and experiences (women practically throw themselves at him throughout the story), Crow is very much not a veteran of the Antwar but rather is one of the vast majority of humans for whom it’s an event in the background of his life. In this respect Crow likely embodies the author’s own experiences with war, for while Steakley was of the generation of Americans who served in Vietnam, there is no evidence that he did so. Instead Crow comes to experience the war vicariously, in a way (without spoiling the plot) that shifts his perspective and profoundly changes his life.

And this is at the heart of what I found so appealing about Steakley’s novel. For while I enjoyed Steakley’s visceral descriptions of war, it was his exploration of reputations and their burdens on people’s lives that proved even more interesting. One of the recurring themes in Steakley’s description of both Felix’s and Crow’s achievements is the expectations born from them. In Felix’s case, his reputation is one we see him earning through enduring graphically horrific battles, as Felix’s survival is contrasted with the gruesome fates suffered by nearly everyone around him. For Felix, there is nothing heroic about what he has done, yet he has to endure the awe of others for what is more suffering than it is achievement.

Jack Crow’s reputation is introduced differently, and in many ways as a counterpoint to Felix’s. When we first encounter him in the novel, he is already an interstellar celebrity for vaguely-defined exploits in his distant past. Whereas Felix tries to hold onto his anonymity and is reluctant to share even the most basic details of his experiences, however, Crow exploits his fame cynically. Though he doesn’t regard himself as the personage everybody treats him as, he proves perfectly willing to play the role in order to get what he needs. This gulf between Crow’s persona and the undercurrent of guilt he feels at not living up to it even as he employs it to his advantage is a recurring conflict in his character that builds to a climax in the novel, one that serves as a satisfying conclusion to the book as a whole.

By the time I reached that conclusion, I understood why Steakley’s novel enjoys the acclaim it has received. It transcends many of its counterparts in the “military SF” genre to offer the sorts of insights into the human character that good fictional works provide. If anything, it deserves an even wider audience than it currently enjoys, and will hopefully be read long after similar books of its type are deservedly forgotten. ( )
  MacDad | Jan 3, 2021 |
Armor is a book that switches between two stories. One is a mechanized soldier's life in a future war against an insectoid alien race. One is a space rogue infiltrating a planet. Both stories are told from a first person perspective. While the just soldier tries to survive the next ant, the rogue enjoys whatever the planet can offer.

The technology is as always with slightly dated science fiction a bit weird but not implausible in any way. The humans are mostly a bit simplified but mostly because the author seems to have focused on a few characters where everything happens.

It's a 3.5 star book for me, starting low but ending better. I like the ending despite me guessing some things rather early. Or because of that. Who doesn't like getting confirmed they are beating the story once in a while?

( )
  bratell | Dec 25, 2020 |
This is my favorite book. ( )
  ruin15 | Dec 12, 2020 |
I should have dropped this book about 25% of the way in, when it stopped being interesting and became instead an thoroughly uneven stack of cliches and beleaguered heavy-handed obvious solutions to half assed mysteries. The ending was telegraphed about 40% of the way in - during a long dragging morass of boring unnecessary world building.

Sticking it with 3 stars, because it managed to keep me hoping that it would go somewhere better. That it didn't, doesn't negate the fact that it fooled me into thinking it would. It's a begrudged 3 stars. Like the credit you'd give a used car salesman that managed to convince you that the lemon was worth your while even though you doubted it all along. Also - there is a chance that this book was influential enough to have infused pop culture I've already been exposed to with things I consider cliche, but may in fact have been innovations at the time.

It simply isn't a great book. There is no way in which this is a classic. I'm left thinking that the people who love it either have very different tastes from myself, or they don't do a lot of reading and they plowed through on a friend's recommendation.

Should have gone with Forever War, or a reread of Starship Troopers. ( )
  Ron18 | Feb 17, 2019 |
Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 41) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
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» Lisää muita tekijöitä (2 mahdollista)

Tekijän nimiRooliTekijän tyyppiKoskeeko teosta?Tila
John Steakleyensisijainen tekijäkaikki painoksetcalculated
Burns, JimKansikuvataiteilijamuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Weiner, TomKertojamuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu

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You are
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The Masao
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Tiedot englanninkielisestä Yhteisestä tiedosta. Muokkaa kotoistaaksesi se omalle kielellesi.
To my beloved father,
first (and foremost) John William Steakley—
and to Eagle,
first (and foremost) pal,
this book is gratefully dedicated.

Every single day I love them both.
Ensimmäiset sanat
Tiedot englanninkielisestä Yhteisestä tiedosta. Muokkaa kotoistaaksesi se omalle kielellesi.
He drank alone.
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Englanninkielinen Wikipedia

-

The planet is called Banshee where the air is unbreathable and the water poisonous. It is the home of the most implacable enemies that humanity has ever encountered. Felix is a scout in A-team Two and highly competent, he is the sole survivor of mission after mission. Yet he is a man consumed by fear and hatred, and is protected not only by his custom-fitted body armor, the culmination of ten thousand years of the armorers' craft, but also by an odd being which seems to live with him, a cold killing machine he calls "the Engine."

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Keskiarvo: (3.84)
0.5 2
1 8
1.5
2 17
2.5 12
3 100
3.5 26
4 123
4.5 19
5 117

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