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Full title Stranger in a Strange Land [permalink]
Language English
Author Robert A. Heinlein (author)
Publisher Ace Books
Categories Novel and science fiction
Publication year 1987
Original publication year 1961
ISBN 0-441-79034-8 [Amazon, B&N, Abe, Powell's]
Pages 438
Synopsis

A man born of human parents but raised on Mars arrives on Earth and goes on to learn as much about it as possible. He learns about religion and eventually founds his own church (which turns out to be more of a school than a church) where he teaches Martian so that Martian concepts can be readily communicated and understood; things like levitation, teleportation, and telepathy are available so long as you learn the language. The title is a reference to the Bible. From the KJV, Exodus 2:22:

"And she bare him a son, and he called his name Gershom: for he said, I have been a stranger in a strange land."

This book is also the book from which the term 'grok' comes. See the Jargon file entry on grok.

Review

I think the portrayal of Michael (the man from Mars) as he learns more and more about Earth is very well-written and his progression is reflected in his speech pretty well.

Images Back of Stranger in a Strange Land.Spine of Stranger in a Strange Land.Front of Stranger in a Strange Land.
Structure [Toggle visibility]
  • Part One HIS MACULATE ORIGIN
  • Part Two HIS PREPOSTEROUS HERITAGE
  • Part Three HIS ECCENTRIC EDUCATION
  • Part Four HIS SCANDALOUS CAREER
  • Part Five HIS HAPPY DESTINY

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