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Freehold by Michael Z. Williamson
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Sure, there's some military sci fi in here, but it's more a coming of age story, a "soldier in the making" tale. For a first novel, it's entertaining and worth some time, even if the deeply embedded libertarian agenda isn't perfectly believable. Oh, and I got bored with the sex scenes with about the second or third one. We'll call it three stars for the excellent battle scenes. ( )
  GunnarGrey | Nov 24, 2015 |
While I am sensitive to Baen wanting to keep the legacy of Heinlein a part of their stable, the choice of Williamson to do so is wrong. You know that Williamson is trying to evoke Heinlein from the number of times Heinlein is mentioned. Heinlein however would not have written this, even when writing the Juvenils.

The book only really starts after you have read more than half and you realize that the it is a to Red Dawn, the movie that Milieus directed, but set in this pseudo Libertarian world that the first half of the book is the propaganda advertisement for but so much worse than Neil Smith ever did. And that is the fallacy that you have to buy into, that the Earth we live on would be so screwed up that they couldn't handle a future society, and that in response one world would have the perfect Libertarian world. Except the truth is that Libertarianism when practiced on a significant scale is just a fantasy that wouldn't work, else, being humans, we already would have seen it working. We are good like that which Williamson who shows his own juvenile writing style probably doesn't have enough critical thought to realize. (When writing and having one previous error in a paragraph that then uses the word fuller, instead of more fully, shows that Williamson doesn't have an adults grasp of English since fuller does not mean that something is more full and immediately stops one reading in mid stream to decipher the authors intent. That is just one of several mistakes of the use of language)

But then to show us that we have been searching for a theme amidst too much prepubescent sex fantasies that have so little to do with a story but to just provide titillation along with the push for propaganda without clear direction that is the first half of the book and giving us nothing shows that the last half of the book is where the story lays hidden. Again trying to emulate Heinlein and failing since Heinlein would have had us understand the theme from the beginning. We then see that if you watched Red Dawn, you would know the story, and the anticlimax accounts for far too much as well. Our heroine could have led us, but our writer made the villains too stupid, and the heroes too able that what conflict and drama there are is cliche and forced.

Amazon kept thinking I would like this, and my library is framed with Baen books I read and reread. This will not be one of them. ( )
  DWWilkin | Jul 8, 2015 |
baen ebook
  romsfuulynn | Apr 28, 2013 |
  mcolpitts | Aug 1, 2009 |
He wants to be Heinlein. This is not a bad thing, the world that Williamson has created is deep, well thought out and very interesting. In this book, a totalitarian government has framed Kendra Pacelli, and the only place that she has to go is the Freehold world of Grainne. On Grainne there is very little government to speak of and what laws there are, are more guidelines. The United Nations do not like the way that Freehold operates and so they seek to start a war. This is a book about true free market capitalism and libertarianism taken to the extreme. It is well researched and detailed and the book is quite moving and a damn good story. I give a very high recommendation to those who enjoy intelligent and technical military science fiction. ( )
1 vote burningtodd | Nov 24, 2008 |
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To my parents:

We disagree on so many things, but I am who I am because of you.
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Sergeant Second Class Kendra Pacelli, UNPF, was looking forward to finally finishing the admin from her deployment to Mtali.
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