March 1st, 2015


Book Review: Farnham's Freehold, by Robert A. Heinlein

Heinlein's "reverse-racism" dystopia is not that bad, but not that good.

Farnham's Freehold

Signet, 1964, 256 pages

Hugh Farnham is a practical, self-made man, and when he sees the clouds of nuclear war gathering, he builds a bomb shelter under his house, hoping for peace and preparing for war. But when the apocalypse comes, something happens that he did not expect. A thermonuclear blast tears apart the fabric of time and hurls his shelter into a world with no sign of other human beings.

Farnham and his family have barely settled down to the backbreaking business of low-tech survival when they find that they are not alone after all. The same nuclear war that catapulted Farnham 2,000 years into the future has destroyed all civilization in the northern hemisphere, leaving Africans as the dominant surviving people.

In the new world order, Farnham and his family, being members of the race that nearly destroyed the world, are fit only to be slaves. After surviving a nuclear war, Farnham has no intention of being anyone’s slave, but the tyrannical power of the Chosen race reaches throughout the world. Even if he manages to escape, where can he run to?

Gotta love those 60s covers. I mean, what the hell is even happening there? I literally cannot make sense of what most of those images are.

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Verdict: Taken as a product of its time, Farnham's Freehold is as entertaining as most of Heinlein's yarns. It is not his worst novel (so far I still award that to I Will Fear No Evil), but it's definitely not his best. 6/10.

Also by Robert A. Heinlein: My reviews of Have Space Suit, Will Travel, Starman Jones, and I Will Fear No Evil.

My complete list of book reviews.
Alexandra Quick

AQATWA: Tap tap tap

I finally opened up the manuscript and added a bit to it tonight. Not much, but more than I've managed for the past couple of weeks.

It's not been a good winter, and I know, I am totally turning into George R. R. Martin except without the money or the fame. But AQATWA is just crawling, not dead or dying.