by Robert Heinlein
Our April 2013 selection.
"There are things which cannot be taught in ten easy lessons, norpopulartzed for the masses; they take years of sweat. This be treason in an age when ignorance has come into its own and one man's opinion is as good as another's. But there it is."
Treason, of course, is just a "t" beyond "reason." And, in the marvelous fantasy world of Robert Heinlein, treason to three-car garages, cocktail parties, and similar cultural "necessities" leads us out of the kingdom ofignorance and onto the glory road. The glory road, in this particular case, begins on a beach of the French Riviera and ends at the center of the cosmos. Scar, a young American, is asked by Star, the empress of 20 universes, to help her retrieve the Egg of the Phoenix, which contains the knowledge of all her predecessors, from SoulEater, who stole it from her.
Before the egg is regained, it becomes clear that the betrayal of ignorance and materialism is anything but treason. It is the stuff of which true heroes—and the spiritual life—are made. For the glory road is really the spiritual path. To travel it, one must be ready to leave behind the roads the average person chooses to follow. He must embrace the magic of the soul and marry himself to its strength. And he must defeat the obstacles which would knock him off the path.
Glory Road is as much an adventure into our own assumptions, beliefs, and heroism as it is a story of Scar and Star. For anyone who likes fantasy, this is a glorious novel.