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Have Space Suit, Will Travel

4.7 out of 5 stars 41 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Preloaded Digital Audio Player
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1602520607
  • ISBN-13: 978-1602520608
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I first came across this in the library when I was young, later bought a paperback and have treasured it ever since.

When my daughters were at the right age it was one of the books they enjoyed the most as a bed-time story, each wanting it to be read again - this was the only book so honoured out of maybe a hundred read to each of them.

The story works on several levels: a simple adventure where an idealistic, and perhaps slightly reclusive, but intelligent and capable boy becomes a hero; improving relationships between different peoples (aliens and humans); a plea for better maths teaching in the schools (even more relevant today); an introduction to some of what might really go on in space; and a wonderful route into Science Fiction for the younger reader.

The other reviewers have summarised the story quite well, but none has mentioned the magic spell it can weave between father and daughter with just the bedside light on in the room, and both minds roaming amongst the stars.
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Format: Paperback
Have Space Suit--Will Travel represents Heinlein at his storytelling best. Free of the esoteric themes that would appear in his later writings, this book is pure science fiction seemingly written solely for the enjoyment of the reader. Originally published in 1958, the story stands up well even today and will surely be read and enjoyed by untold generations to come. I am sure that many a young person read this book and yearned to reach the moon in the decade before the Eagle finally landed.
This is generally classified as one of Heinlein's juvenile books, but Heinlein's writing is for all ages. I am sure the book appeals to many young people because its protagonists are themselves young people: Kip is a high school senior, and Peewee is a girl of about twelve. Kip develops an overpowering urge to go to the moon, and he is lucky enough to win a real space suit in a contest. Heinlein's description of the many different features of the suit is fascinating. Resigning himself to selling the suit for college tuition money, Kip goes for one last walk; somewhat playfully calling out on the radio, he is surprised to hear an answer to his call. He is amazed when a space ship soon lands in his backyard and a decidedly alien creature comes out and collapses. A second ship lands, an entity gets out and conks Kip on the head, and the next thing Kip knows he is trapped inside a space ship on his way to the moon, suddenly in the company of a little girl. His captors are "Wormfaces," a species of alien that has been in hiding on the moon, looking at the earth with evil intentions. Peewee introduces Kip to the "Mother thing," a Vegan entity (and interstellar policeman) who radiates love and warmth, effectively communicates with the pair in a bird song type of speech, and inspires undying love and devotion.
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Format: School & Library Binding
This was my very first foray into science fiction as an eight year old - it delighted me and catalysed my interest in the genre and in literature in general. Nearly 30 years later, I still hold a fondness for this story and for Heinlein's easy and smile-worthy eloquence, I would recommend it for adults or childrenm but especially for reluctant young readers who will likely find the author's style captivating and irresistable.
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By A Customer on 28 Mar. 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This was the first science fiction book I ever read, I found it in the public library when I was 12 years old, was intrigued by the title and took it home to read. I enjoyed it immensely and went on to devour Heinlein's other kid's classic, "Podkayne of Mars" which I thought was equally wonderful.
Thirty-five years later, Kip, Peewee and the Mother Thing have lost none of their charm. What I found most interesting about this book, however, was how very much things have changed since this it was first published: the story begins with Kip's attempting to win first prize in a soap slogan contest (he sends in 5,000+ entries) the grand prize for which is a trip to the moon. He doesn't win the trip but he does win Oscar-the-Traveling-Spacesuit, which turns out to be the best prize after all. Back to the contest: Kip can send in the actual contest form included with each bar of soap or he can send in a "reasonable facsimile." He entertains the idea of photographing the form 5,000 times before deciding that's impractical, so he settles instead for collecting the forms from the people who have bought the soap. I kept thinking, so why doesn't he just use the photocopier when it occured to me there weren't any photocopiers when this book was written. There weren't any intergrated circuits either, never mind microprocessors, which would have been necessary to achieve colonization of the moon in the first place.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Like many of the others here, I read this about the third grade. It was my first SF book and I've been hooked ever since. For the young person (or any age, I supose) it grandly illustrates the values of determination and preparedness. As one of the characters stated, "luck" is something that happens to people who prepare for it. Because Kip had a spacesuit, he was able to go to the moon, Pluto, and even another galaxy. I've seriously thought of getting my own space suit, to be ready for a similar opportunity!
Though written for the young reader, I enjoy this book as much at 40 as I did at 8. Highly recommended for any age, but especially for young folks.
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