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Jumping Off The Planet (Starsiders Trilogy) ebook

by David Gerrold

David Gerrold was barely out of his teens when he wrote the script "The Trouble With Tribbles" for the classic television series "Star Trek"

David Gerrold was barely out of his teens when he wrote the script "The Trouble With Tribbles" for the classic television series "Star Trek". Nominated for a Hugo Award, it was listed by "Playboy" magazine as one of the 50 Greatest Television Episodes of All Time. And in a 1997 FOX TV special it ranked as the most popular science fiction episode on television of all time.

Jumping Off the Planet book. Sep 19, 2011 Doris rated it it was ok. Jumping Off the Planet.

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JUMPING OFF THE PLANET David Gerrold MOM AND DAD A HOLE IN THE GROUND CROSSING THE LINE THE GULF GOING SOUTH POPULATION CONTROL TERMINUS ALL ABOARD UP ONE-HOUR. JUMPING OFF THE PLANET David Gerrold. Mom and dad. "I've got an idea!" Dad said. Let's go to the moon. Huh-?" I looked up from my comic. I mean it. What do you kids think? Do you want to go to the moon?"

David Gerrold - a winner of the Hugo Award and the Nebula Award - is the author of dozens of novels, including Jumping Off the Planet, Bouncing Off the Moon, The Man Who Folded Himself, When Harlie was One, and the incredibly popular The War Against the Chtorr series.

David Gerrold - a winner of the Hugo Award and the Nebula Award - is the author of dozens of novels, including Jumping Off the Planet, Bouncing Off the Moon, The Man Who Folded Himself, When Harlie was One, and the incredibly popular The War Against the Chtorr series. A prolific screenwriter as well as a novelist - he wrote the hugely popular The Trouble with Tribbles episode for the original Star Trek television series. Gerrold lives in Northridge, California, with his son.

JUMPING OFF THE PLANET David Gerrold. And then Stinky slipped at the first switchback and skidded off the path, which would have been warning enough to any rational person that running down the side of a hole big enough to have its own area code was not a good idea-but Stinky didn't have good ideas. He picked himself up, shouted, "You're a big doo-doo head, and you can't catch me," and headed toward the next switchback.

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David Gerrold, 1999. Gerrold wrote the non-fiction book Worlds of Wonder: How to Write Science Fiction & Fantasy, published in 2001. The Martian Child is a l novel, expanded from a novelette of the same name, based on the author's own experiences as a single adoptive father, with most of the key moments drawn from actual events.

When this novel first slid across my desk, part of me was thrilled to have another David Gerrold novel to read, while part of me dreaded dealing with a story line wrapped around a dysfunctional family - seen primarily from the perspective of an adolescent. I am now extremely happy to tell you that the story line reels you in, and moves along at a pace like a run away train.

A trip to the Moon? Sounds like the perfect family vacation. Only for 13-year-old Charles "Chigger" Dingillian his family is anything but perfect. His parents fight so much they put the 'dis' into dysfunctional. So when he and his brothers find themselves halfway to the Moon Chigger hits on a plan: if his parents can't find a way to work things out, why not just divorce them? Sound crazy? Until it works. Charles and his brothers are on their own. But their bid for freedom hits a roadblock when Chigger suspects they are targets of an interstellar manhunt. What do these Big Corporations want? And why? Their only hope is to jump off the planet...
In this novel of a disfunctional family which evacuates a deteriorating Earth, Gerrold begins by writing as if it was a Heinlein juvenile--indeed, Charles, the hero, has been widely compared to the Heinlein juvenile hero. Interesting concepts (such as Gerrold's particular Beanstalk concept) are mixed with science lessons (the physics of same) in a classic Heinlein manner, though the first third of the books.
But as the novel slows and approaches an end, Gerrold appears to move to Heinlein as of the '70s and '80s--the sort of novels with a few "good guys" whom you'd better like through thick or thin, and a bunch of "yammerheads". The example of this is Howard the Lawyer, a singularly unsuccessful lawyer with all sorts of unfortunate attributes who we get to laugh at (Gerrold makes it really, really, clear that he hates lawyers in all three books of this series). For some reason, this worthless lawyer, who couldn't win a case if he tried, is hired to represent the interests of multitrillion dollar corporations. But plot shouldn't get in the way of Gerrold getting us to share his petty hates. All is made right through a judge who will only enforce the rules against one side--which is very much a Heinleinian thing to do, but it is not a good lesson for kids. But as we are supposedly rooting for Charles and friends, it may not bother you much.
I'm not going to bother to write reviews for books 2 and 3, but book 2 is a combination of The Moon is a Harsh Mistress and Have Space Suit--Will Travel--which does little credit to either. Book 3 combines the flashback "high school class" scenes of Starship Troopers with Gerrold's attempt to get to the conclusion on his own. It sort of trickles out for no apparent reason except that there are no more pages.
Gerrold always has good ideas. But this time, good ideas just weren't good enough.
Back in the fifties Robert Heinlein pretty much perfected the science fiction 'juvenile' (which merely means that his protagonists were normally adolescents - not that the novels do not deal with difficult, complex, 'adult' themes and ideas). Few authors have had the temerity to write works that use the Heinlein model as their basis, but Gerrold has attempted it here.
As a starting point, Gerrold takes a very dysfunctional family consisting of three brothers, all of whom have various highly anti-social character traits, and their divorced parents, who are constantly squabbling over custody and visitation rights to their children. He places them in a reasonably near-term future, where the multi-national corporations have pretty much taken over, 17 billion people are voraciously consuming what little resources planet Earth still has, and the defining technological development is the 'beanstalk', a massive wire hung from geosynchronous orbit all the way down to the planet surface and extending upwards nearly as far for balance. The father, at the end of his wits and finances, decides to 'kidnap' his children and take them up the 'beanstalk' as the first part of a journey to the moon and beyond in an attempt to leave his troubles (and legal jurisdiction) behind.
The story is told from the viewpoint of the middle 13 year old brother, who feels 'left out', that his parents and brothers never really talk to him or deliver on their promises, leaving him cynical and withdrawn. As the story progresses, he begins to develop his own sense of responsibility for his actions and depend less on the 'that's not fair' type argument. Unfortunately, most of this development is somewhat hidden from the reader till near the very end of the book, where the statements he makes seem to almost come from nowhere, as too little of his underlying thinking has been previously shown. Starting as a complete techno-geek with few defining human characteristics, the eldest brother is only slowly developed, so that only at the end of the book does he come to the point where he seems like a real person worthy of your notice. The youngest brother starts as and remains a near cipher, a tool for showing the need for parental discipline and allowing brotherly responsibility to be exhibited.
Still, Gerrold is better in his characterizations than while trying to explain the technology of his world. While the ideas are good, sometimes exemplary, such as his concepts on the flow of various types of money, his exposition is too often dry, near academic in tone. Here he definitely suffers in comparison to Heinlein, who could write twenty page essays on the care and feeding of space suits and remain entertaining and continue to further his story line during the exposition. On the other hand, the courtroom scenes that Gerrold presents are just as good (and very similar in tone and action) as any of Heinlein's, and his societal ideas (such as being able to divorce your parents) are very much in the Heinlein tradition.
There are some items touched on here that Heinlein could never have gotten by the editors of his time, such as homosexuality (of both sexes) and certain bodily functions. While these items play a role in the story development, they are not gone into in any detail, though it might have made a better, deeper book if they had been. But with these items, it makes the book unsuitable for very young readers.
Even with these flaws, this is still a good, very readable book that brings the old Heinlein model into the world of today. Today's teens may find this book more relevant, more in tune with their world, than the older Heinlein works.
Words escape me. I had really high expectations reading the other reviews of this book. I've read most of David's other work, and liked it. I also have to admit a secret fondness for science fiction written for the so-called juvenile audience. I really wanted to like this book, and I just didn't. The science part was up to par, but the story, the plot, and most of all, the chacters made my skin crawl. I will stipulate that this family probably exists in real life, but why write about it?
Ever since I read "The Man Who Folded Himself," I've been hooked on Gerrold. He's a fantastic sci-fi author who makes his proposed technological/futuristic ideas so incredibly real by superimposing the psychological effects of them onto real and profoundly deep characters. This allows the reader to believe that the events in his story have not only come to pass, but are in a constant state of flourishing growth -- be it Chtorran life forms or the great society of the Beanstalk as vividly described in this novel. He makes us *feel* science fiction.
Kudos to Gerrold for his wisdom, vision, and heart.
Jumping Off The Planet (Starsiders Trilogy) ebook
David Gerrold
Science Fiction
EPUB size:
1761 kb
FB2 size:
1810 kb
DJVU size:
1491 kb
Tor Science Fiction; 1st edition (April 15, 2001)
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