Read by Christopher Hurt and just over sixteen hours of listening.
The listener must be cognizant of the cultural morays of the time during which Strangers In a Strange Land was written … late 1950s, published in 1961. Think post WWII opulence, manual typewriters, radio news, newspapers, Eisenhower, cold war … mom wearing a house-dress or white gloves and a girdle. The days of Mad Men, a Coffee, Tea, or Me mentality and obnoxious sexism to the extreme. There ‘ya go! The author will bring the hackles up on anyone who has a modern mindset regarding sexuality. A secondary issue is to have an open mind with regard to religion and/or religious belief.
If you can overcome these teeth-grinding bones of contention, the SciFi aspect of Stranger In a Strange Land contains many interesting and creative concepts. The man from mars is a Michaelangelo-David type adonis, innocent as a babe. His thoughts are extremely literal, he has intelligence off the chart, reads encyclopedias and dictionaries to understand the ways of mankind. He has SciFi superpowers, i.e., telekinesis, can make things and people disappear, out-of-body skills, can throw himself into a type of near-death stasis, etc. He is has very high morals and understands (groks) little of the earth or it’s inhabitants.
Thus is the foundation of a romp through the story of Stranger In a Strange Land. The story is not about the world of Mars, it is about how a man born on Mars deals with and reacts to Earth and earthlings. It’s a platform for the author to convey views, a popular methodology in fictional literature that is more suited to non-fiction, in my opinion. As opposed to being preached at, I’d rather feel entertained … this book oddly does both.
For it’s time, Stranger In a Strange Land is an okay SciFi … be tempted to throw your player across the room because of some arrogant chauvinism on the part of the author. Narration by Hurt is good, nice tempo.