In the version I read, there was an introduction by John Scalzi who compares The Forever War to his own novel, Old Man's War. I can definitely see the comparisons, but I even enjoyed Scalzi's novel a bit better.
Trade Paperback - 265 pages
Okay, enough with the comparisons, I did actually like this book, so I'll get into the good stuff. Throughout the novel, Haldeman plays with the theory of relativity and time dilation. So, the main protagonist, William Mandella, becomes an old man of two or three hundred years old at the actual age of 25. Or is that switched. Anyway, his body is a 25 year old's. This is always interesting and Orson Scott Card plays around with this in his Ender's Game series too.
Because of this time dilation that's going on, the earth is going through many changes while Mandella is away. The portrayal of earth was done really well throughout the book. One time Mandella returns home to find earth to be a far different place than he remembers it. Food is running out and crime has become such a problem that people need body guards or at least a high powered gun if they go anyware. This causes Mandella and the rest of the company that returned home to earth to get back into the military, where there's at least some stability.
I had just a minor quibble with the way Mandella and his love interest, Potter, came together. It just didn't seem to real to me. They were not very friendly with each other and suddenly they couldn't be apart. Anyway, this wasn't a huge deal, and it still works fine for the story.
Who should read this? If you're in the mood for a war story that shows how pointless everything about war is, this is for you. It definitely doesn't celebrate war like many sci-fi and fantasy novels tend to do. This was a good story, but I didn't think it lived up to the hype and that may be it's biggest fault.
5/5 stars for the cover art
Rating explanation: As the rating system to the right shows, I liked The Forever War a lot, just not enough to love it.