Battlefield Earth

A Saga of the Year 3000

Fiction - Science Fiction
1052 Pages
Reviewed on 02/08/2023
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Vincent Dublado for Readers' Favorite

L. Ron Hubbard’s Battlefield Earth: A Saga of the Year 3000 releases its 21st-century edition. This timeless science fiction classic has earned its rightful place in the ranks along with Dune, Hyperion, and Martian Chronicles. For the uninitiated and for those who are merely familiar with its lackluster film adaptation, this story takes place in the year 3000, when a dystopian Earth is ruled by the Psychlos, an alien race whose deep space probe technology led them to Earth. The Psychlos stand a towering nine feet tall, weigh up to a thousand pounds, and are impressively strong. Earthlings have become an endangered species. Jonnie Goodboy Tyler, a man who lives in an isolated tribe, is captured and forced to submit to a learning machine by a Psychlo named Terl, who captures man-animal workers to mine gold for him. Jonnie, on the other hand, has found a way to leverage his endeavors in the mines, as he discovers a way to defeat the Psychlos with the help of his newfound allies.

L. Ron Hubbard made a brilliant choice of delivering his narrative from two opposite perspectives - that of Jonnie and Terl. Similarly, other characters make a strong presence felt as certain chapters are told from their respective points of view. The story is pretty straightforward - alien invasion and humanity’s long struggle for freedom. It’s a theme that you have read in other science fiction novels. What makes Battlefield Earth interesting is Hubbard’s propensity to create his very own world that he believes in as if he were there to witness it all. You may or may not go along with his fantasy, but this is what Hubbard intended his story to be. He makes no excuses for the drastic measures that Jonnie will take for the sake of freedom, or how Terl is evil for the sake of being evil. The book provides a more in-depth look at the imagination of Hubbard, popularly known as the founder of Scientology. Forget the movie. Just read the book.