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The Cat Who Walks Through Walls by Robert A.…
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The Cat Who Walks Through Walls (edition 1988)

by Robert A. Heinlein

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
4,256451,827 (3.49)80
Robert A. Heinlein has written some of the best-selling science-fiction novels of all time, including the beloved classic Stranger in a strange land. Now, in The cat who walked through walls, he creates his most compelling character ever: Dr. Richard Ames, ex-military man, sometime writer, and unfortunate victim of mistaken identity. When a stranger attempting to deliver a cryptic message is shot dead at his dinner table, Ames is thrown headfirst into danger, intrigue, and other dimensions where Lazarus Long still thrives, where Jubal Harshaw lives surrounded by beautiful women, and where a daring plot to rescue the sentient computer called Mike can change the direction of all human history.… (more)
Member:NeoWayland
Title:The Cat Who Walks Through Walls
Authors:Robert A. Heinlein
Info:Ace (1988), Mass Market Paperback, 400 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:***1/2
Tags:None

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The Cat Who Walks Through Walls by Robert A. Heinlein

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» See also 80 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 43 (next | show all)
Adventure mixed up with time and complicated family trees in which the goal is to rescue a self-aware computer on the moon. ( )
  LindaLeeJacobs | Feb 15, 2020 |
I've read this book many times, but just finished the audiobook for the first time and as such I've finally decided to review this book.

I love this book. That said, there are other Heinlein books that are better overall. The main problem with this book is that this book can be viewed as two books pushed together. In some sense, it seems like he wrote himself into a corner for the first half and pulled out the second half so he can hand wave the questions that arise in the first half.

So, why I do I give 4 stars for a book with this problem? Mainly because of the clever dialogue and some of the characters, including the title cat, Pixel who doesn't know that cats can't walk through walls so he does it anyway.

This shouldn't be one's first exposure to Heinlein. There are too many ties into other books of his, most notably, [b:The Moon is a Harsh Mistress|16690|The Moon is a Harsh Mistress|Robert A. Heinlein|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1166740333s/16690.jpg|1048525], [b:The Number of the Beast|50877|The Number of the Beast|Robert A. Heinlein|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1201734223s/50877.jpg|1077659], and [b:Time Enough for Love|353|Time Enough for Love|Robert A. Heinlein|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1218664355s/353.jpg|75443]. In these cases, there's direct plot elements (and characters) in this book that relate specifically to those books. There's also references to some of his other works as well, but not quite as blatant as these three. So, this book is a little treasure for fans of Heinlein's works.

If one hasn't read Heinlein, either start with Moon or one of the juveniles (with the caveat that the juveniles are definitely a product of their time), but if people have read at least the first two of the aforementioned books, they should give it a try. ( )
  tjl | Jan 2, 2020 |
When Colin Campbell (aka Richard Ames, aka Senator Richard Johnson) is unjustly (and inexplicably) accused of murder on the space habitat Golden Rule, it sets off a roller-coaster flight through Lunar space and -- ultimately -- through time and a multitude of universes. Riddled with snappy dialogue and utterly self-referent, it's best read by someone who is either familiar with Heinlein's Lazarus Long series, or by someone who doesn't care that much of it makes no sense at all. ( )
  LyndaInOregon | Jun 16, 2019 |
At what point am I supposed to believe that this has an actual comprehensible story line? This novel is such a hodge-podge that one must wonder whether it is a conglomeration of two (or three) different books Heinlein was trying to write at the time.

First off, for all those who claim that you cannot appreciate this book unless you have read all the other Heinlein books - back off. I've read almost all of them. That argument is so weak. The references to the other novels, most notably, The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress, are hardly consequential. More like oblique.

What is inconsequential is the first 320 pages (out of 388). One need only read the last five (out of 30) chapters of this book. The rest doesn't matter as they are all red herring plot lines that go nowhere. If you wish to read about a hyper-extended escape scene that serves no real purpose, then enjoy the first 200 pages. If you want to read about ridiculous family relationships, then enjoy the next 130. Whatever you do, do not try to remember what you think are important facts, because there are none. Mysterious Schultz in chapter 1? Forgotten. Walker Evans group? Never heard of again. Important characters in space station Golden Rule - Morris, Mr. Middlegaff, Bill, Tree-San? Dr. Schultz (different from other one) all vanished. Numerous Luna characters? Who remembers? Attackers on the bus? No idea.

Story needs a rescue, sudden shift to time travel. Introduce a whole new slate of characters all inter-related (save the sentients) with similar looks and names. New mission defined. Rescue a sentient computer from Luna. This by a people so advanced they have instantaneous FTL and time travel and surrounded by other sentient things, but they need this relic. Sheesh!

Meet lots of past RAH and other sci-fi/fantasy characters. Big whoop. Means nothing.

Short last chapter wrap up is desperate attempt to resurrect all lost sub-plots. Abysmal.

As a big fan of his early works, I'm always willing to give RAH a chance. This was one chance to far. ( )
  MichaelDrakich | May 30, 2018 |
This was towards the end of my science fiction period. I don't remember being impressed. I think that was because there wasn't actually a cat in the story (if I remember correctly.) Although this might have been where I read a kitten described as "all fluff and buzzes", which, of course, is perfect. ( )
  Lit_Cat | Dec 9, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 43 (next | show all)
In een vrij in de ruimte zwevende stad, niet ver van de Maan, raakt Richard Ames (een ex-militair die eigenlijk Campbell heet) in de ban van de mooie en slimme Gwen Novak. Daardoor wordt hij het middelpunt van allerlei intriges, waar hij in het begin helmaal niets van begrijpt, maar die hem van het ene gevaar in het andere storten. Uiteindelijk blijkt Gwen te behoren tot de omvangrijke 'familie' van Lazarus Long, die de tijd en de dimensies ten goede probeert te manipuleren, en Richard daarbij nodig heeft. Het nieuwste boek van de oude meester (geb. 1907) is tot ver over de helft vlot, grappig en avontuurlijk. Het laatste deel, het 'universum' van Lazarus Long, heeft Heinlein sedert 'Time enough for love' al zo vaak beschreven, dat het gaat vervelen. Luchtig, af en toe wat babbelzuchtig boek waarin alle stokpaardjes van de auteur weer eens komen opdraven. Het leest als een trein - en dat is de voornaamste verdienste van dit pretentieloos amusement. De engelse editie werd aangeboden op 86-10-051.

(NBD|Biblion recensie, Drs. P.M.H. Cuijpers)
added by karnoefel | editNBD/Biblion (via BOL.com)
 

» Add other authors (8 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Robert A. Heinleinprimary authorall editionscalculated
Kannosto, MattiTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Whelan, MichaelCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Epigraph
Ah Love!
could you and I with Him conspire
To grasp this sorry Scheme of Things entire, Would we not shatter it to bits - and then
Re-mould it nearer to the Heart's Desire!

RUBAIYAT OF OMAR KHAYYAM
Quatrain XCIX, Fifth Edition
(as rendered by Edward FitzGerlad)
'Whatever you do, you'll regret it.' Allan McLeod Gray 1905-1975
Dedication
To
Jerry and Larry and Harry Dean and Dan and Jim Poul and Buz and Sarge
(Men to have at your back)

R.A.H.
First words
'We need you to kill a man.'
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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From Publishers Weekly
As the old guard of SF ages, we are getting more novels of nostalgia. Heinlein is less sentimental than many of his generation but his new book resembles both the latest Bradbury, in making the author the protagonist, and the latest Asimov, in returning to a popular series from early in his career (Future History). Like Heinlein, Richard Ames is an ex-military man turned writer who fancies himself a pundit. An assassination attempt precipitates his marriage to Gwen Novak and sends the newlyweds scurrying to the Moon and then to the planet Tertius, headquarters of the Time Corps. The action, though, is largely beside the point in a novel that is predominantly a dialogue between the protagonists. Their foredoomed attempt to become the Nick and Nora Charles of space (with a bonsai standing in for Asta) is sabotaged less by Heinlein's endless elbow-in-the-ribs wisecracks and more by his inability to convincingly portray a sexual relationship. Given the increasing popularity of his recent, similar work, it is unlikely that the book's short-comings will limit its potentially large audience. November 11
Copyright 1985 Reed Business Information, Inc.
---------

From the back:
IN The Cat Who Walks Through Walls, he creates his most compelling character ever: Dr Richard Ames, ex-military man, sometime writer and unfortunate victim of mistaken identity.
When a stranger attempting to deliver a cryptic message is shot dead at his dinner table, Ames is thrown head first into danger, intrigue, and other dimensions where Lazarus long still thrives, where Jubal Harshaw lives surrounded by beautiful women, and where a daring plot to rescue the sentient computer called Mike can change the direction of all human history.
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