Battlefield Earth by L Ron Hubbard book review

Battlefield Earth is quite the epic. Not only is it over 1,000 pages filled with lots of characters but the audiobook version I was kindly gifted was over 45 hours, which even at 2x speed was quite the time consumption. Was it worth my time and, more importantly, would it be worth yours?

Please note that this article contains affiliate links. This means if you choose to purchase any products via the products below, I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. These affiliate links do not affect my final opinion of the products.

Battlefield Earth: A Saga of the Year 3000 (as it’s properly called) tells the story of Jonnie Goodboy Tyler and his incredible story as we meet him trapped by an alien called a Psychlo. This is a story that spans not only time but also space. It tells quite the epic tale with some very memorable moments and some slightly more mundane moments, something that is almost inevitable with a book this long.

Battlefield Earth plot – 4.25/5

I’m not sure where to even begin with Battlefield Earth. It almost feels like a magnum opus of a story. I don’t want to give way too many spoilers but this is a book that focuses almost solely on Jonnie Goodboy Tyler (a name I just couldn’t take seriously) and his journey from a lowly man into one of the most powerful beings in the galaxy.

We see him gain friends, lose friends, experience betrayal, deal with different alien species, discuss politics and finances, involve himself in revolutions and so much more. It’s a book that really does feel like you’re reading over 1,000 pages. It isn’t afraid to make the most of those pages with so much content, so many large world-affecting changes and a mass of different storylines.

Now, there are some moments in Battlefield Earth where I found myself quite bored. Moments dragged on quite long, some moments felt like they were just filler pages whilst Hubbard worked out what he wanted to write next. I reckon around 200 pages or so could have been removed in here and cut down to make it feel slightly more fast-paced at times.

I must also make a note of the incredible audiobook that Galaxy Press has put together. It features a host of different voice actors, an incredibly immersive soundscape and some great music that really borders the line between this being an audiobook and an actual high-budget audio drama.

Battlefield Earth characters – 4.25/5

There are a wealth of characters in Battlefield Earth as to read through it. There are enemies who are genuinely dislikeable and protagonists who are equally likeable. Jonnie Goodboy Tyler (eugh) is a relatively likeable protagonist. He’s got a lot of passion, doesn’t let anyone walk over him and is always willing to do enough to keep the plot rolling along too.

We meet a variety of different characters along the way, including both heroes and villains, as I mentioned earlier. There are a few characters who stand out with their unique personalities, and they will stay in your memory even after you finish reading the book. Hubbard did an excellent job of making you feel like you are reading about real individuals, even though some of them are actually aliens.

Battlefield Earth final rating – 4.25/5

Battlefield Earth was released over 40 years ago now and there are elements to the book that feel like this. At times it does feel like a brain dump from Hubbard but at others, it feels like a genuinely incredible science fiction novel, scoping worlds, and cultures with sweeping action. The characters are hit and miss with our main protagonist being the perfect character to take us through these 1,000+ pages and some others being memorable too.

Realistically, if you’re looking for a massive science fiction novel to get your teeth into that you could read for the next few months, then Battlefield Earth is one you should look at. If you don’t have the time or the attention span, just be weary of its length.

Buy a copy of Battlefield Earth from Amazon

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *