This book tells the story of John Mandella, a soldier in an intergalactic war that is vastly similar to Vietnam (apart from the whole aliens V humans, and spaceships thing…). Conscripted while in his early twenties, he is sent on a number of missions that take months in subjective time, aboard the space vessels, but years in objective time due to the physics of relativity when travelling close to, at, and faster than the speed of light. Thus, every time the troops return to Earth decades and sometimes centuries have passed, isolating them from humanity.
As well as being packed full of action and sci-fi battles, this book also manages to squeeze in romance. Mandella gets separated from another officer he has grown to love, and expects never to meet her again (she could be eighty years older, or dead when he next returns to Earth due to relativity complications).
Well written and fast paced, I would recommend this book to anyone with an interest in science fiction. I loved the idea of constantly and rapidly moving forward in time, and how this could cause a tragic love story. Five stars.