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Armor by John Steakly October 24, 2012

Posted by stuffilikenet in Books.

Armor by John Steakley is the sort of tale I read while still a bored adolescent, and consequently fits my morning and evening commute very nicely.  It is the story of a man joining the equivalent of the French Foreign Legion (in space, with powered armed exoskeletons) fighting people he can’t understand (eight foot-tall ants) for no reason except to lose himself.  Fate is not so kind to him; he survives (barely) twenty horrible battles which were decisively lost by the humans—sort of.

This ordinarily would be a dull story of war but it’s told from the point of view (partly) of a pirate thief sort of character, who is forced to relive the Legionnaire’s  battles when hooked up to the power suit…this is sort of interesting, because he gets a feelings transplant from the dead Legionnaire.  Hilarity does emphatically not ensue but a real disgust with war does, and so does the ability to make tough decisions.

Read by Tom Weiner (narrator of many of Larry Niven’s novels), the audiobook is $109.00 for the CDs and $19.95 for the Audible edition…guess which one I heard.  Go on, I’ll wait.  There is no Kindle version, alas.

John Steakley apparently passed away in 2010, and was the author of Vampires, on which the John Carpenter movie was based.  I haven’t read it, but assume it’s close to the movie version because the movie is so damn visceral.


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