Old Man’s War (2005) by John Scalzi

Old Man’s War is a military science fiction and debut novel by John Scalzi …

It was nominated for the Hugo Award for Best Novel in 2006. …

… the first novel in Scalzi’s Old Man’s War series. …

I was reminded of of Ender’s Game.

Scalzi freely admits he was influenced by Robert A. Heinlein’s Starship Troopers.

The writing is juvenile to appeal to teenage boys.

Still, I enjoyed this book. Particularly the plot twist that soldiers must be age-75 to enlist.

Soldier John Perry tells the tale. His consciousness is transferred to a super-powered 20-year-old body.

There are plenty of interesting technologies in this imagined future.

BrainPal is a neural implant that allows members of the Colonial Defense Forces (CDF) to send and receive data, including speech, battle plans and much more. CDF soldiers use their BrainPals to translate alien languages, watch classic cartoons, and read old books.

It was initially optioned for film in 2011, and for the last few years Syfy has been trying to develop it as a TV series. Don’t hold your breath.

I don’t think I’ll continue to the sequel — The Ghost Brigades. 

Religious Leaders call for friendship

World’s Top Religious Leaders Issue Rare Joint Appeal

“Our advice is to make friends to followers of all religions.”

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

Racists tend to ghettoize. Cling to people who look and think like themselves.

“Tiny Dancer” by Elton John & Bernie Taupin

After seeing the NEW VIDEO for the classic song, I got these lyrics stuck in my head. For days.

I love this song first released 1971.

Blue jean baby, L.A. lady, seamstress for the band
Pretty eyed, pirate smile, you’ll marry a music man
Ballerina, you must have seen her dancing in the sand
And now she’s in me, always with me, tiny dancer in my hand

lyrics

Bernie Taupin:

We came to California in the fall of 1970 and it seemed like sunshine just radiated from the populace,” Taupin says. “I guess I was trying to capture the spirit of that time, encapsulated by the women we met, especially at the clothes stores and restaurants and bars all up and down the Sunset Strip. They were these free spirits, sexy, all hip-huggers and lacy blouses, very ethereal the way they moved.”

“They were just so different from what I’d been used to in England,” Taupin continues. “They had this thing about embroidering your clothes. They wanted to sew patches on your jeans. They mothered you and slept with you. …

Behind the Song: “Tiny Dancer” by Elton John

The Blue Jean Baby is Maxine Feibelman — Taupin’s first wife.

Click PLAY or watch my favourite version on YouTube.

And here’s the OFFICIAL music video released in May, over 45 years after the song was published.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

in North America the poor & less educated smoke

There’s hope for the world.

The national smoking rate (USA) has fallen to historic lows, with just 15 percent of adults still smoking. …

America’s new tobacco crisis: The rich stopped smoking, the poor didn’t

Smokers are mostly embarrassed that they can’t quit in North America.

Not so in Europe. There the cool kids still smoke. Proud of it.

Why can’t Europeans quit smoking?

I don’t get it.

The English Girl by Daniel Silva

I’ve been disappointed by a number of books recently. Not Silva. He keeps getting better.

REVIEW:

A beautiful woman is snatched from her vacation on Corsica. A ransom note reaches 10 Downing Street. An ambitious, unfaithful prime minister seriously needs a fixer.

… Israeli spy, Gabriel Allon, one of the more believable and likable heroes in recent spy fiction.

To call The English Girl a page turner is an oversimplification.

Smart, unpredictable, and packed with bits of history, art, heart, and imagination, this is a page turner to be savored. Let me just say that I like John LeCarre. Big fan. Still impressively relevant and prolific into his 80s. But the torch must pass to someone. …

Daniel Silva isn’t quite LeCarre. He’s a more modern breed, with some major DNA overlap. (Other DNA-sharing: Graham Greene, Joseph Kanon, Alan Furst.) When it comes to the vast club of practitioners of international spycraft, Silva is a cut above them all, and The English Girl is a masterwork. —Neal Thompson

 
related – MGM TV Acquires Rights to Daniel Silva’s Gabriel Allon Spy Novels