Read The Eternity Brigade by Stephen Goldin Online

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Hundreds of human bodies have been placed in coffins in a military warehouse. But they are not dead, merely frozen in a cryogenic process meant to preserve an army of men to be restored to life if ever they are needed. The Earth they arise to inhabit is a world completely different from any they have known or imagined. Their only task is to fight and kill in the wars thatHundreds of human bodies have been placed in coffins in a military warehouse. But they are not dead, merely frozen in a cryogenic process meant to preserve an army of men to be restored to life if ever they are needed. The Earth they arise to inhabit is a world completely different from any they have known or imagined. Their only task is to fight and kill in the wars that plague the planet. They are not treated as men, but as fighting machines to be endlessly duplicated and used up. By having had their genetic patterns programmed into a computer, they are doomed to live over and over again, as part of an army that will not die and cannot escape. Yet one man is determined to break the pattern and free himself, truly believing that there must be a way out...of eternity....

Title : The Eternity Brigade
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780449143360
Format Type : Mass Market Paperback
Number of Pages : 256 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Eternity Brigade Reviews

  • Raegan Butcher
    2019-04-08 12:34

    Along with Joe Haldeman's THE FOREVER WAR, this is the absolute best depiction of disenfranchised victims of the corporate-imperial combine ever depicted in the science fiction genre. This is a superb book that just begs for a big screen adaptation. I have read The Eternity Brigade at least five times since I first picked it up when I was a sixth grader. This is one of my favorite science fiction books, period.

  • Anna Erishkigal
    2019-04-20 14:17

    I originally read this book back when I was in high school, not so long after the Vietnam war that people still questioned why wars were even being fought. Even back then this story stuck with me, and was my first real introduction to the sub-genre of military science fiction. What happens when killing doesn't matter, death doesn't matter, all that matters is to complete the mission, with no understanding of WHY you are fighting the war or killing the guy in the blue armband, only to be put to sleep when it's all said and done and woken up when the next war rolls around to kill again.Now, upon re-reading the updated edition in 2014, it strikes me how well this book brings you into the psyche of a 'career soldier' caught in this hellish merry-go-round as he is resurrected to fight in wars again and again. It was disturbing when I read this story back in the early 1980's, and it's even MORE disturbing now as we are not yet extricated from Afghanistan (which at least STARTED with a purpose) and Iraq (which is like ... WTF???) and already there are hawkish clamorings to 'help' Ukraine or 'help' Syria. War is dehumanizing, and while some wars can't be avoided, this book highlights that soldiers are not some fungible commodity to be shuffled form war to war.Great read! 5-stars.

  • Janine Southard
    2019-03-24 14:26

    Very cool, somewhat disturbing. This one has a lot in common with The Forever War without being quite as good. The government has figured out how to keep soldiers in cryo (then stasis, then pattern buffers) until they are called on to fight. This cuts down on costs, yes? It's also a voluntary program. Sort of. The differences in the world each time our hero wakes up, and the ways in which the program gets perverted until there is no escape (just endless war), sucked me in. Also intriguing, this book came out in 1980, so the 1980s "history" is a kick -- what does he get right? What does he get wrong? What could have been? I find it interesting that he assumed our next big war would be a terrorist action, but that he figured it'd be in Africa.

  • Candy Laine
    2019-04-17 18:34

    I am absolutely blown away with this book. Cryogenics is such a fascinating topic. Can you be frozen and wake up without ageing some day in the future? Is the being that you are today, going to fit into a society in the future. Then add the military aspect of how a fighting soldier will adapt to waking up in a future world and fighting...simply amazing. And I love the four primary "sleepers", the reasons that they got originally pushed into project Banknote. Green really was the smart one...one single word was the key to getting off the merry go round...remember. If humanity ever really goes that way, and it is looking like a very real possibility, such soldiers will begin to exist! Scary thought isn't it!!!

  • Victoria Pond
    2019-03-26 15:23

    Very cool, somewhat disturbing. This one has a lot in common with The Forever War without being quite as good. The government has figured out how to keep soldiers in cryo (then stasis, then pattern buffers) until they are called on to fight. This cuts down on costs, yes? It's also a voluntary program. Sort of. The differences in the world each time our hero wakes up, and the ways in which the program gets perverted until there is no escape (just endless war), sucked me in.

  • Edward Diesel
    2019-04-08 16:33

    This was a very enjoyable read. It gets quite out-there toward the end and I found it pretty compelling stuff. A must for fans of military-tinged sci fi with an anti-war tone.

  • Scott Holstad
    2019-04-04 11:28

    The Eternity Brigade is innovative, thought provoking, action packed, and horribly disturbing. Written in 1980, it follows the military career of an army man named Hawkeye and his friends, Green and Symington. After Vietnam, America gets involved in a big war in Africa that is apparently pretty brutal. The military, and I assume politicians, come up with a plan to cut costs while maintaining military preparedness: cryogenics. Roughly 100 "volunteers" are given a bonus and three weeks leave if they agree to be frozen cryogenically only to be unthawed at some point in the future to fight a future war when the time comes. Hawk and the other two decide to do it, with some reservations, and are frozen. Moments later, they're awoken and get out of their "coffins." They're shocked to discover it's been nearly 12 years! They've been unfrozen to help lead a new, untrained army against Chinese rebels and the Russians, while aiding the Chinese government, which they think is pretty odd. They win, go back to their base and are discharged and sent home. Before they were frozen, they had come up with the idea that if they pooled their money they'd be collecting while paid while frozen, they'd have enough to be rich and go into business together. To their surprise, money has been devalued and they're only worth about 40% of what they thought they'd be worth. They go to New York City and try to find work, but there's none to be had. People have changed, food has changed, they can't go to college on the GI bill because most colleges have shut down and the few remaining have incredibly high standards. They become disenchanted and decided to reenlist. More soldiers are doing it now, many more. This time they're frozen for 14 years. They don't age however. They fight another war. They leave the army again, only to find that the politicians have seized all of their assets while they were frozen and have taken their pay away from them. They're dead broke. So they reenlist. When they get back to base, they're given a new briefing about a new technology. It involves something other than cryogenics. Now, pictures can be taken of them, instantly putting their atoms into computers, storing them for as long as necessary, easier to transport, and able to put them back together again when it's time to fight again. They see taped demonstrations of this and even though they have misgivings, they decide to do it. After all, they have nothing to go home to in the real world. Instantly they're awakened, ready to fight another war. This one is with Russia. On the moon. And Hawk sees Green die. He's devastated. Until he finds out the next time around that Green and Symington, who also died, are both there, ready to fight. Now that they're computerized, they can always be brought back to life. They can never truly die. They're immortal, always ready to fight wars for whoever commands it. Countries change, alliances change, aliens appear, more worlds are discovered, wars are fought everywhere for hundreds of years and they all live and die a million times over. They're trapped, slaves of the system. They can never get away, never get their freedom. Until they land on one planet that's special. And something "wrong" happens to Green. Something that's never happened before. And all of a sudden, Hawk realizes there actually is a way out, a way to freedom, a way to end this nightmare existence of hell he's been living. And so he takes it. And it's pretty freaking awesome. But in the process of what transpires in this book, as Green brings up, what has happened to their souls? They no longer exist as humans. They're only a microchip. Do they even have souls anymore, if they ever did? Does God exist and if so, does he even care? This book takes a hard look at a number of things and the answer(s) it provides isn't always pretty and it portends some awful possibilities for our future. But there are ways out. There always are. This isn't the best book I've ever read, but it's quite good and it stretches one's mind. There's gratuitous sex, but that's probably more the result of the '70s sexual revolution during which it was written than anything. The violence isn't overly extreme. It's a short book, so it's a quick read. But it's a sobering book, so be prepared. Nonetheless, recommended.

  • Frida Fantastic (book blogger)
    2019-04-12 17:23

    The Eternity Brigade was first published in 1980. Major revisions have been made and the final edition was published in 2010. I’ve never read any earlier editions so I’m approaching this work as an entirely new 2010 release.The concept of using cryogenics to make soldiers nearly immortal is intriguing. The story is told from the point of view of Hawker, an American soldier who is trapped in the army’s resurrection technology, as he is forced to become a pawn in increasingly bizarre wars that he has no connection to. In short, Hawker is stuck in a nightmare. Through the centuries, he becomes even more alienated from society to the point that all of future civilization is incomprehensible to him. It’s a haunting future to imagine and it really takes man’s inhumanity to man to the next level.On top of the amazing concept, it’s fast-paced. It grabbed me very quickly and never let go of my interest. The narrative doesn’t mess around with the details and moves the plot smoothly through the centuries and galaxies.Although the reader doesn’t learn much about Hawker, he’s still a very sympathetic character. It’s easy to see how anyone could be in Hawker’s position, where control of one’s life can be swept way by forces like larger personalities, groupthink, and the industrial-military complex. It makes Hawker’s experiences even more frightening.While those elements are exceptionally strong, I found the other characters and the world-building lacking. The characters feel like types rather than real individuals, and a few of them had unclear motivations. I couldn’t pin down Hawker’s original time. He makes some references to iPods which would set his time in 2001 and later. His fellow revived men find it surprising that China isn’t completely communist anymore, but China was already economically liberal enough to join the WTO in 2001.The Eternity Brigade moves through centuries with the changing forms of warfare and civilization. I appreciate the time-place disorientation that Hawker experiences with each incarnation, and the idea that future society can only become more strange and incomprehensible. But the future setting alongside the sombre tone often feels anachronistic. The future societies are reminiscent of the “exotic” alien societies that Captain Kirk from the original Star Trek interacted with. The aliens have easily identifiable binary genders and the humans live in bubble-domes. I just feel the tropes used for the setting are a bit quaint. The details that I found unconvincing are found in less than a tenth of the text, but they are distributed throughout the book so they occasionally distracted me from the main storyline.The Eternity Brigade is a thrilling read with a great central concept. I enjoyed it, but I can’t say it’s my best read of the year. I still guarantee that this book is a provocative page-turner that’s easily devoured in one sitting. It’s worth reading to explore its engaging ideas about the human cost of war and its vision of dystopia, but don’t expect too much from the characters or the world-building.Note: a free review copy was provided by the author.

  • T.
    2019-03-26 13:28

    "Stephen Goldin's scifi novel The Eternity Brigade (the 2011 updated edition) is much, much more than a retread of a Ringo or Weber "combat action-adventure in the stars" tale. It is a philosophical novel that looks deeply into the heart of why men fight wars, how men in combat bond with each other, and why the "command" of any war force is always way behind any of the frontline troops in understanding the nature of a particular war. There is blood, combat in space and on Earth and other planets, plenty of sex and an amazing amount of "soldierly loneliness" in this tale of Hawker and his buddies Green and Symington. Goldin makes outstanding extrapolations from current society so that soldiers at first are cryogenically frozen so as to "save money and combat expertise" for future wars, but that process is soon abandoned for recording of a person's whole personality and memories on a crystal similar to how music is recorded. In short, this novel takes the Star Trek "transporter" concept to its ultimate conclusion--immortality. But what happens to a fighter's soul? Strangely, it is those who control the tech for copying people, objects and tech over and over who totally lose their souls in the process of "cost savings." But human stubbornness also comes along with combat tricks, and Hawker eventually finds a way to escape this flawless "merry go round" of slave-like immortality, all the while staying true to his buddies and teaching high command a lesson in what they are really dealing with. This is as good as The Red Badge of Courage or any war novel to come out of the Civil War, WWI, WWII or Vietnam. In fact, it is scarily prescient because what Goldin describes is within the reach of conceivable technology. Sooner rather than later, we will have "recorded soldiers" ready to do the bidding of politicians. But they will still possess the essence of their humanity. A conundrum that few authors of combat scifi explore today. A must read."

  • Don
    2019-04-09 14:15

    Not as good as The Forever War by Joe Haldeman, yet does portray the main character having a redemption against the powers that be, the ones who gave him the option of being a frozen soldier to be revived at their beckoning call when troubles are brewing and an experienced military grunt on the front-lines was greatly needed.Well thought-out storyline and all the characters are solid and likable.The only thing I generally dislike is sexual innuendos in Science Fiction and the story did have some. Thankfully it was sparse.Well worth the reading if military Science Fiction is to your liking.

  • Stephen Goldin
    2019-04-03 16:19