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December 4, 2003

We should start looking for novels that have not inspired Halo; we would save time ;)

Bravehamster ( writes:

I just finished the Classic SF War Story "The Forever War" by Joe Haldeman, winner of the Hugo and Nebula awards. Great book BTW. The basic plotline is of a recruit who spends a thousand years away from earth, while only living 5 years due to relativity. Vast changes await him at home. It was written during the Vietnam War and contains a lot of parallels to the experiences of soldiers returning from the conflict. During my reading I noticed several parallels to the Halo story, and I think this may be the origin of the order to avoid jumping straight to Earth. The relevant quote begins on page 175 of the most recent trade paperback edition. The "Heaven" they refer to is a Rest and Relaxation planet.

"It took 3 collapsar jumps to get to Heaven. No ship ever went there directly from a battle, even though the delay sometimes cost extra lives. It was the one place besides Earth that the Taurans could not be allowed to find."

Reading down a few more paragraphs, we find that the main characters land at the largest city in Heaven: Threshold. Does sound a bit familiar, doesn't it? There's a couple more similarities I found as the book went on. The characters also fight in mechanized suits similar to the Master Chiefs. Then I read the description of the starship:

"...reflected in the design: stolid, heavy, functional-looking. The only decoration was the name MASARYK II, stenciled in dull blue letters across the obsidian hull."

"...The ship was over a kilometer long (1036.5 meters, my latent memory said), and about a third that wide (319.4 meters)."

Well, I hope this information proves useful. I heartily recommend the book, although like most good classic SF it does contain a few anachronisms.

A mention of Threshold, ships that seem all too Covenant in both hue and scope, and a latent memory in your head telling you what's what... sounds a little familiar ;)

Good find :)

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