MandaBerry's Books

One person's thoughts on a whole lot of books

Tag Archives: old man’s war

Review: Old Man’s War by John Scalzi (Old Man’s War #1)

Old Man's War (Book 1) Old Man’s War by John Scalzi  (Old Man’s War #1)

from the back of the book

John Perry did two things on his 75th birthday. First he visited his wife’s grave. Then he joined the army.

The good news is that humanity finally made it to the stars.  The bad news is that, out there, planets fit to live on are scarce – and alien races willing to fight us for them are common.  So, we fight.  Far from Earth, the war has been going on for decades: brutal, bloody, unyielding.

Earth itself is a backwater. The bulk of our resources are in the hands of the Colonial Defense Force, and everybody knows that when you reach retirement age, you can join up. The CDF doesn’t want young people; they want people who carry the knowledge and skills of decades of living. You’ll be taken off Earth, never to return. You’ll serve two years in combat. And if you survive, you’ll be given a homestead of your own, on one of our hard-won planets.

John Perry is taking that deal. He thinks he knows what to expect.  But the actual fight, light-years from home, is far, far harder than he can imagine – and what he will become is far stranger.

My rating: 5 out of 5

Bookshelf: yes

How I got it: bought


I loved this book! I found the idea of only being able to join the army when you turn 75 interesting and the alien/human encounters entertaining. I enjoyed the sarcastic tone that’s in much of the dialogue and the military battles were exciting.  While there are serious moments, there weren’t enough to leave me feeling down after finishing the book.  I often recommend this at work – especially for people who want to start reading sci-fi. It’s not too technical, it’s exciting, and it’s fun.

This is the first in the Old Man’s War series. It’s followed by The Ghost Brigades, The Last Colony, and Zoe’s Tale.