It S The Rd Century And At Age Your Life Is Over Logan Has Been Trained To Kill Born And Bred From Conception To Be The Best Of The Best But His Time Is Short And Before His Life Ends He S Got One Final Mission Find And Destroy Sanctuary, A Fabled Haven For Those That Chose To Defy The System But When Logan Meets And Falls In Love With Jessica, He Begins To Question The Very System He Swore To Protect And Soon They Re Both Running For Their Lives When Last Day Comes, Will You Lie Down And Die Or Run The novel Logan s Run was published 40 years ago still holds up well as an entertaining piece of science fiction I ve always liked the 1976 film version starring Michael York Jenny Agutter was pleased to see that there were noticeable differences between the film the novel I wonder had the novel had been published today, in a world of The Hunger Games, Divergent etc, it might have been a huge hit inspired a whole series of films merchandise spin offs While I would recommend the book to any fan of science fiction I must admit that I still prefer the film. Definitely a good bad book, which anticipated cyberpunk the way Robert Sheckley anticipated Douglas Adams In Logan s world, everyone has to submit to voluntary euthanasia when they turn 21 and their palmflower goes black But Logan decides he ll try and find Ballard, who s 42 and has lived a double lifetime Maybe he can help him escape to the mythical Sanctuary.It doesn t exactly make sense, but there are lots of very memorable sequencesJust saw that Nicolas Winding Refn and Ryan Gosling are going to be teaming up again to do a new movie version If it s as good as Drive, it should really be worth watching Though I m disappointed to see that they ve already announced one major change people in Logan s world will be euthanased at 30, not 21 as in the book. I read this back in the 70s The movie appeared not a bad science fiction movie for the day and I ran the book down It was better than the movie by quite a bit.This is another cold war view of the future and a fairly dark outlook While it s not the best or the worst one I read it s a fair read. I always like the idea of reading old sci fi than the actual experience, and it certainly held true with this book as well Logan s Run is, of course, iconic Immortalized in a futuristic, and now cult classic b movie, it has cinematic influences on everything from Bladerunner to Minority Report But there s really just not that much story here Ultimately, that s what disappoints that there could have been such an interesting story, but all we get is a chase through various decaying and exotic scenes.Still, there are some passages that stand out, one being a 1967 impression of the modern Internet, described thus Here was a constellation of winking fireflies stretching to infinity Here was an immense electronic silence In the endless, glowing dark was Tangier and London, Macao and Capri and Beirut, El Quederef and Chateau Chinon and Wounded Knee From these caverns leapt the motive force of a dispensary in Chemnitz, a glasshouse in Shropshire, a call box in Billings, Montana This vast mountain brain sent it s signals along Earth s nervous system to the distant places, the villages, towns and cities, bringing order out of disorder, calmness out of confusion.They beheld the world.The final realization of the computer age A direct extension of the electronic brains at Columbia and Cal Tech in the 1960s, it was a massive breakthrough in solid state technology Computer was linked with computer in ever widening complexity Brilliant.And a giggle worthy description of a dirty bomb Brigadier General Matthew Pope authorized the use of one vest pocket tactical atomic bomb It was the last act of his life, and no other nuclear weapon was used in the Little War Ground zero for the bomb was the site of the Smithsonian Institute and the resultant crater was thereafter known as Pope s Hole It was a remarkably dirty bomb, and for two weeks Washington was virtually uninhabitable until the Geiger count fell low enough for observers to re enter the city and test the atmosphere Already the zoo animals had begun to breed Heat from the nuclear explosion stored in tidal salts beneath the earth was still leaching out after all these years The furnace heat, combined with the high humidity, had created a tropical rainforest Winter ceased to exist in Washington I like a little humor in my fiction. I admit I m a little torn on this one Written in the late 1960s, this sci fi thriller had an interesting message and seems to have influenced a fair bit of modern sci fi, but it was done in a somewhat superficial manner A synopsis It s a couple hundred years after the 20th century and nobody is allowed to live past age 21 The entire world is connected by a giant subway system controlled by a powerful computer in the heart of a mountain in the middle of America Everyone wears implanted flowers on their hands that are programmed to change color every seven years to denote different phases of life and, ultimately, to alert everyone to when a person is scheduled to go to Sleep, or surrender their lives at age 21 The people who refuse to go to Sleep are called Runners, and they are tracked down by an elite police force called Sandmen, who kill the Runner on sight Presumably, all Runners are looking for Sanctuary, or the place where they can live out a natural human life Logan is a Sandman who decides to run on his last day, teaming up with a female runner and going on an intense journey within the course of 24 hours that leads them to an underground railroad seeking Sanctuary.It reminded me a lot of the movie In Time, with regards to an artificially set end of life for political and economic reasons Whenever I read mid century sci fi, I have to take a step back and remember that it s not derivative, but rather informative Right now, this type of story seems completely overdone, but that s probably because it actually helped influence a fair amount of mediocre sci fi currently being released This story was a sort of what if scenario that doesn t really transcend time like 1984 or other great and beloved sci fi stories have Logan s Run was a result of the writers watching a cultural revolution take place in the late 60s, where young people changed the country, something not really seen before in America With all the protests, riots, and incredible news coverage, the future probably felt incredibly tentative at that time In that way, Logan s Run is an interesting historical document, looking into the minds of writers who were unsure what the cultural revolution could engender and wanted to pursue one outlandish avenue to its natural conclusion Looking at that idea now, it seems ridiculous since all those hippies mellowed out and became the much maligned baby boomer generation who grumps about the laziness of their kids and saps social security basically what the authors of Logan s Run thought might be avoided if everyone committed suicide by 21 Ok, so maybe there still is something poignant about the story after all On the flip side, I didn t love the writing It was an action packed thriller, low on character development and high on quick, sparse sentences and crazy fast plot movement The runners are dashing around the country, encountering new villains here and there and defeating them just as quickly as they meet them It all felt like a comic book than a novel, which just isn t my cup of tea The authors sci fi guys William F Nolan and George Clayton Johnson teaming up do a decent job of quickly creating a vivid world and dystopian future, but it feels quite dated and pulpy as opposed to literary Though we are meant to have mixed feelings about Logan, who we know to be a killer but also a seeker of human connections, there s no real character arc that occurs and in fact, there s a strange climax to the novel where he maybe seems to go through some sort of inner turmoil, but it is very strangely executed and unclear whether or not his whole dash for freedom was planned by the Sandmen or not This is part of the blurriness of the writing, where settings are much fleshed out than people The climax takes place in Washington, DC, which has become a tropical jungle due to a nuclear bomb explosion, and is infested with escaped zoo animals I loved the imagery of this place, but everything that occurs there is like a fever dream of incomprehensible plot I ll also say that Logan s fellow runner, Jessica, is a painfully useless character, playing the part of a beautiful, weak woman who constantly needs saving Eye roll It really makes me appreciate the new sci fi heroines in the form of The Hunger Games and probably Divergent and stuff, according to the movie trailers I ve seen Because of its messy and immature writing style I can t say I really enjoyed it, but I do appreciate it as a valid influence on its genre and as a statement about the era in which it was written. That god awful Hunger Games series has nothing on this book Logan s Run is set on our very own planet, but the people, to avoid overpopulation, have to die at age 21 and be replaced by younger generations All the 21 year olds are view spoiler recycled, eaten, ewww hide spoiler A literary masterpiece this is not, but it s been influential to some extent in the world of sci fi, especially film, and is good fun Fueled by mid 20th century fears of global overpopulation, Logan s dystopian society is based on the concept of putting people out to pasture when they reach the ripe old age of 21 30 in the film It s rife with implausibilities and hastily explained settings and scene changes, but the action, at least, doesn t let up. So I picked this up for 87 cents basically for two reasons 1 It s Logan s Run What need be said 2 Come on, 87 cents Did I mention that it s Logan s Run Ok, I hate reading the book after I ve seen the movie this pretty much goes with any book to eventual movie combo , but really, I vaguely even recall the movie I remember scant parts and I think most of the parts I remember aren t even in the book and I think the other parts I remember are those refreshed by stills wedged into the middle of the book after being reprinted in 76 to promote the movie Sigh, I hate movie promoting versions of books too, but oh well, it s not like I had a choice Now, despite what I can remember from the movie, I loved it and than anything, I sort of picked this up for a good laugh Actually, I was pleasantly surprised This was actually pretty damn good It was short, fast paced and amazingly gripping Seriously, I couldn t put it down and rolled through in a few short hoursand nowwell now I gotta go track down the movie again.There s few book movie combinations I enjoy it s usually one or the other, either the book was fantastic and the movie was nothing than shallow hollywood droll orwell, the other doesn t happen very often This is one of the few exceptions where both were superb. Can I make a confession here I ve never seen the movie version of Logan s Run I know, I know I should probably turn in my geek card at this point Either that or I should dust off the DVD version I picked up for a low price and put the shiny disc into the player and cross it off my list of shame.For a long time, my excuse has been that I d never read the book And once I found out that the book came first, as a book a holic, I could at least say that I wanted to read the book first So, finally after years of searching used book stores and various books swapping sites for a reasonably priced copy of the book, I finally got one And then it promptly sat on my to be read shelf for a long period of time Then, I actually promised the book to a friend who loved the film but hadn t read the book So, it was that I finally found myself at a point in time that I felt like it was time I should sit down and finally crack the cover of Logan s Run Was it worth the wait, the build up and the hype Yes and no.As with all books that are made into movies, it s nice to see what the authors originally intended for the world and characters to be on the printed page The edition I acquired is an old one from the when the movie was out, so I had to resist the temptation to look at the 16 pages of full color photos from the film Part of it was curiosity to see how my mental image of characters and settings was different and part of it was curiosity to see which parts of the books might be included and which might be dropped Thankfully, I was able to resist the siren call of full color stills from the movie until after I d read the final page The story itself starts off fairly well The concept of a future society in which overpopulation means everyone submits to death at the age of 21 is intriguing Logan is part of the police force that hunts down those who don t want to die and become runners Logan is very good at what he does and doesn t really question his place in things That is, until the crystal on his hand begins to blink red, indicating he has 24 hours to live.At times, the concept of people lining up for the death machines to terminate their lives reminded me a lot of classic Star Trek s A Taste of Armageddon But where that society was fighting a war via computers and counting up deaths to meet quotas and not violate a treaty, the society here is trying to curb overpopulation At this point, some interesting ideas begin to crop up, including why this society chose 21 as the cut off point for its people and what kind of impact it was having on the world Is part of the future world of Logan that people mature faster And how does the society function when run by the younger set without the older group there to guide them and offer wisdom and or insight Unfortunately, the novel never really delves into any of these questions It also never delves much into how anything runs with any efficiency since it seems like there s not a lot of time to train people on how to do things or to give them time to learn new skills How Logan becomes a great Sandman isn t really delved into and it s a question that could and should be addressed.Instead, the story is of a straight forward chase and adventure narrative In many ways, it reminded me of 24 with characters chasing about from location to location geographically without any consideration for how long it might take people to get from here to there in the real universe The story also could have used a lot development in Logan as he goes from a man who decides if he s going out, he s going to take out the rebel sanctuary known as Sanctuary in his final day to being a guy who is on the run and could be a leader of the new rebellion As far as I can tell, the book seems to say all you need is love and you ll become a revolutionary.It all ends up feeling like the novel is being written to be quickly and easily adapted as a screenplay And it may work better as a movie Looks like it s time to dust off that DVD and find out.