Author(s): Robert A. HeinleinDownload
In a distant galaxy, the atrocity of slavery was alive and well, and young Thorby was just another orphaned boy sold at auction. But his new owner, Baslim, is not the disabled beggar he appears to be: adopting Thorby as his son, he fights relentlessly as an abolitionist spy. When the authorities close in on Baslim, Thorby must ride with the Free Traders — a league of merchant princes — throughout the many worlds of a hostile galaxy, finding the courage to live by his wits and fight his way from society’s lowest rung. But Thorby’s destiny will be forever changed when he discovers the truth about his own identity…
Some Reviews: 607 in Goodreads.com
Citizen of the Galaxy was the first scifi I ever read. In elementary school I simply read everything available but in middle school the contents of the school library changed. Suddenly there were baby romances for girls and westerns and war novels for boys. The sexism didn’t especially bother me — eading books from the other side of the line was the least of things I got teased about — none of the stories were particularly good. I could guess what was going to happen long before the end. Boring!!!
A substitute teacher-librarian saved me. She handed me CotG, and reading became fun again. It wasn’t all that different from other stories — street kid gets lucky AND works hard and makes good, but the setting was different. Life didn’t have to be as I was living it, there were alternative possibilities. I devoured scifi as fast as I could find them.
I have to say that rereading this book as an adult was disappointing. It was the first YA book I had ever read as an adult and I hadn’t realized what a difference there was. Still, I have to rate it as I first read it, as the book that changed my reading preferences forever.
1977 grade A+
2006 grade A
2020 grade A+
ISBN 441 10601 125
The last book I read was an 80 year old Heinlein. It took place strictly on earth and was kind of out of date. This one is only about 60 years old, and it is much better! The novel fully fits the Heinlein mystique of his golden era. Heinlein writes about people from a person’s point of view. I lost count of the number of planets, social systems, and species created for and described in the story, some in great detail. It still has quite a bit of sexism, but not as much as before and the rest of the prejudice is pretty much gone.
I had some trouble stopping reading. Whenever I came to a potential stopping point, I would check the time to make sure there was enough to reach an alternate stopping point. If not, I stopped knowing it would be extremely easy to pick up again. I gave up other hobbies to get back to the story.
Citizen of the Galaxy is one of my very favorite books of all time. It gets a reread at least once a year. Thorby starts out this book as a slave being auctioned. He is bought by the beggar, Baslim the Cripple. As the book progresses, we along with Thorby, realize that Baslim is not what he seems. This book explores what it means to be human, the inhumanity of slavery and the resilience of the human spirit. It’s very well written, entertaining, with wonderful characters and worlds. While I have issues with a lot of Heinlein’s novels for adults, his YA books are by and large wonderful. Highly recommended for anyone of any age.
The ending of this book is so different from the beginning! You couldn’t even begin to imagine what might await at the end of the book when you’re reading the first chapter about Basilim the Cripple’s acquisition of a slave. This book talks a lot about slavery, community, and freedom. The conversations that Thorby has with his various mentors – Basilim and the People – are thought-provoking and interesting. While not quite as good as the World as Myth series, this book is still a definite solid read, and is a must for any Heinlein enthusiast.
I have enjoyed every Heinlein novel I have read so far. He builds such complicated worlds with little words. His characters fascinate me, and they have depth and keep me interested. The mystery surrounding the main character, seemly simple slave bought by a beggar keeps me turning the page. This is a prime example of science fiction with the proper amount of information given to the reader to construct a space faring future and not leave the reader bord. Well worth a read for anyone who enjoys good scifi.
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