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The Door into Summer (1957)

de Robert A. Heinlein

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3,774662,696 (3.85)1 / 151
Fantasy fiction. Dan Davis, an electronics engineer, had finally made the invention of a lifetime: a household robot that could do almost anything. Wild success was within reach-and Dan's life was ruined. In a plot to steal his business, his greedy partner and greedier fiance tricked him into taking the "long sleep"-suspended animation for thirty years. But when he awoke in the far different world of A.D. 2000, he made an amazing discovery. And suddenly Dan had the means to travel back in time-and get his revenge.… (més)
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Robert A. Heinlein frustrates me. In an interview about the book he said after he had the idea, it took him only 13 days to write The Door Into Summer. Imagine the focus he had to churn out a “classic” in only 13 days. It’s frustrating because I want to be creative but I struggle to produce anything of substance in only 13 days.

The book is a short read. It is Robert Heinlein’s time travel book. It was published in 1956 but is set in the 1970s and 2000s. It’s always interesting to read other’s predictions of the future. In writing this story Heinlein envisioned a world both 15 and 50 years in the future. The big changes in these future worlds were robots that do all of the housework. This robot revolution freed the housewife from a life of chores.

Dan Davis is the inventor behind these inventions and is the story’s protagonist. The story begins with him being swindled by his business partner and fiancée. He decides life in the future might be better so he decides to use the “cold sleep,” which is a service that allows you to be frozen and woken up in a future year of your choice. This is the basic plot setup of the book.

The pacing is just right for this type of book. This was a light and enjoyable science fiction book. Now is this a “classic” of science fiction? I have seen this book on a few best-of lists. It’s hard for me to decide. Again, it was very enjoyable, and it’s hard for me to point at anything I didn’t like. However, when I compare it to even other Heinlein books it seems to fall short. The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress is still one of my all-time favorite science fiction books. Even Heinlein’s Stranger in a Strange Land feels like more of a “classic” to me (although I will say I liked The Door Into Summer better). These “classics” are bigger in scope, and maybe that’s the charm of The Door Into Summer – it’s simple but flawless.

One more thing to discuss: Does the book feel dated? We are dealing with a 64-year-old book here, so there are dated references. Heinlein’s imagined future is void of computers and the Internet. I’m a huge proponent of reading older books. We can’t expect older books to match our worldview, rather we should let them expand our own. That being said, I didn’t find this 1950s science fiction book to feel dated. Any old references or misses in the prediction department don’t distract from the story or success of this book.

So in conclusion, I had a lot of fun with this book. It was a very light and easy read. If you are looking for a “classic” of science fiction you should check out The Door Into Summer by Robert A. Heinlein.

*This review was extracted from my review on my website - The Door Into Summer by Robert A. Heinlein |Book Review ( )
  samuelpedro1992 | Feb 7, 2022 |
Apart from remembering Pete, I'd forgotten I'd read this. The audiobook was more vivid than the print version, I take it. Didn't love it -- kind of pedestrian and convoluted. Heinlein writes in a straightforward plain style I think is effective, but nothing grabbed me. ( )
  dhm | Nov 26, 2021 |
Heinlein's obsession with nudity shows in almost every book. The book is also so old that that the author can comfortably write about the main character proposing to a 12 year old child (which thanks to time travel ages to 21 before marriage). ( )
  Paul_S | Mar 2, 2021 |
Really dated today. One time travel trip, two long sleeps, twists. You can tell Heinlein was an engineer at some stage. He wrote it in 1958, set it in 1970 and 2000. Interesting speculation on the future, but shows the limitations. Written in a folksy-aw-shucks style. ( )
  hvgriggs | Feb 18, 2021 |
A great early- mid Heinlein book that I’d somehow never read. It has a few great elements (a cat! An engineer protagonist! Cryonic preservation of humans, I.e. sane time travel. robotics. Forensic accounting and corporate governance) and a couple not great ones (stupid time travel, and a sexual relationship with a 6-11 year old girl/family friend by waiting for her to turn 21...), but overall it was really good. ( )
  octal | Jan 1, 2021 |
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Nom de l'autorCàrrecTipus d'autorObra?Estat
Heinlein, Robert A.autor primaritotes les edicionsconfirmat
D'Achille, GinoAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Della Frattina, BeataTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Giancola, DonatoAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Holmberg, John-HenriTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Holmes, JohnAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Hunter, MelAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Shaw, BarclayAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Szafran, GeneAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Thole, KarelAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Warhola, JamesAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
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One winter shortly before the Six Weeks War my, tomcat, Petronius the Arbiter, and I lived in an old farmhouse in Connecticut.
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Despite the crepehangers, romanticists, and anti-intellectuals, the world steadily grows better because the human mind, applying itself to environment, makes it better. With hands...with tools...with horse sense and science and engineering.
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Wikipedia en anglès (1)

Fantasy fiction. Dan Davis, an electronics engineer, had finally made the invention of a lifetime: a household robot that could do almost anything. Wild success was within reach-and Dan's life was ruined. In a plot to steal his business, his greedy partner and greedier fiance tricked him into taking the "long sleep"-suspended animation for thirty years. But when he awoke in the far different world of A.D. 2000, he made an amazing discovery. And suddenly Dan had the means to travel back in time-and get his revenge.

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