May 26 2007

The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress

Category: BooksChrisM @ 3:13 am

The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress – Robert A. Heinlein

I returned to reading Sci-Fi with this novel, and despite some misgivings with its title, I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the writing.
The story (strangely enough) revolves around the moon, which has been setup as a sort of prison/penal colony, a bit like Australia was a few centuries ago. In the same way as Australian citizens quickly gave birth to children, who had committed no crime, the new lunar generations find themselves on the moon, having done nothing wrong.
The book is set in the future, towards the end of the 21st century, with the main character being a computer tech who works for the lunar authority. He finds out that the main super computer on the moon has evolved well beyond its initial programming, and is self-aware.
The inhabitants on the moon are not happy with their situation, which see the governments on Earth take all the moons resources at an artificially low price, and give none of the benefits. A revolution ensues, and things don’t go to plan…
Oh yeah, ever wondered where the phrase There Ain’t No Such Thing As A Free Lunch came from? Apparently this novel has the first recorded instance of it!

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