Heinlein's Hazel Meade Stone timeline question.

You know Hazel Meade Stone. She was that spunky kid in The Moon is a Harsh Mistressand then an old lady in The Rolling Stones. (Not in the order as written I know. She was old first, then young. Go fig.)

So. In Rollingthe twins, Castor and Pollux, have to space their bikes so their Mom can save the sick people on the War Godand they leave a note saying NOT FOR SALVAGE. When they get their bikes back there’s a smart alec-y P.S. from the Galactic Overlord. Hazel swears she didn’t write it and I don’t think she actually did. At that time.

In another book, doesn’t Hazel get picked up (In the Gay Deciever?) and they go whooping through time and space and she DOES write that note only later (in her timeline)? So, which book is that? (I think I read it, but I can’t remember which one it is. Other than one I don’t have personally.)
[sub]Yeah, I’m curious enough to just ask, but not so interested to do any actual research.[/sub]

The Cat who Walks Through Walls details the adventures of Hazel Meade Stone Long, freshly rejuvenated time-travelling storm trooper extraordinaire, who goes back in time to draft Colin Campbell. It doesn’t detail her writing the note, but it certainly seems like something she would do.

Hazel’s in CatEthilrist? Well, if it’s been so long since I’ve read it that I’m forgetting the characters, it’s time to read it again. (Good thing it’s one of the ones I DO own.)

No, Rue, it’s never time to re-read any of the Post-Seniles. The first half of Cat is pretty good, but as soon as it touches the meta-world novels, it goes way downhill.

Wasn’t the To Sail Beyond the Sunset?

A) Chronos is right. Rue is thinking of Cat.

B) Ethilrist: If I understood your question (I think you dropped a word or two :stuck_out_tongue: ) No. But some of the events in Cat overlap the events of Sunset (IIRC) and Number. (We see a scene in Number and then see it again in Sunset, but this time, from Maureen’s point of view.

And for the record, I disagree with Chronos. I think he’s underrating some the post-Moon is a Harsh Mistress Heinlein stories. A few of Heinlein’s later works are really good. A few are flawed but good and a few…um…well…ugh.

A quick rundown, IMHO, of course

I Will Fear No Evil He wrote it when suffering from a near-fatal medical condition and it was released unedited. Heinlein was noted for writing down a ton more than he would eventually release and then edit it down. It shows that he didn’t.

Number of the Beast I read a theory that this was supposed to be a parody. Having reread it with that in mind, I still didn’t like it and don’t buy the theory. And even if it was, who cared? Outside of the Oz sequence and the cocktail party at the end, I disliked most of it and hated the rest.

The Cat Who Walks Through Walls I HATED the ending, I hated the middle and I hated the fact that I liked the beginning a lot and then it was ruined by being connected to the middle and last parts. On the other hand, it kinda pisses libertarians off as Heinlein shows what happens when the neat, tidy theory of libertarian philosophy encounters messy, imperfect ol’ humans. :smiley:

Job Thoughtful, great characteriztion, good philosophical musings, no connection (except as a barely noticed in-joke) with any of Heinlein’s other works. This is the late-period Heinlein’s masterpiece.

To Sail Beyond the Sunset A)It’s a fascinating picture of early 1900s life from someone who was there. B) Don’t tell me you didn’t get a thrill when you started seeing Maureen encounter the events of the early future history short stories. C) Ok, the ending’s not perfect, but it wrapped things up.

Time Enough For Love (This should be in the “Flawed” category, but it has The Tale of the Adopted Daughter and The Man Who Was Too Lazy to Fail, which bump the book up a notch, even though there are some pretty snoozeworthy sections)

FTR, I regularly reread Job, I reread Sunset every now and then, and I regularly reread a “the good parts version” of Time Enough


Friday: The plot meanders, the character’s annoying and the world doesn’t make much sense. But it’s fun and the plot (such as it is) moves right along.


One of these days, when I complete my Heinlein collection, I will make a flowchart indicating all the characters and their crossovers.

But I gotta buy Mistress and Stones first.

Are “Post-Senile” and “post-Moon is a Harsh Mistress” the same? It’s hard to believe that someone senile could write all that stuff, whatever you think of the quality. Chronos, when would you date the beginning of senility?


I’d have to agree with “annoying” and “fun” but I’m not so sure about “meanders.” If it’s not too far off thread, could you illustrate the meandering for me? (Or an email would be fine.)

It’s been a while since I read Friday, but as I recall it seemed to have chunks of about six interesting books in it, none which were taken to fruition.

Lesse…we had the one about the combat courier, the one about the Balkanization of America – I’d love to know more about the California Confederacy – the one about Kettle Belly Baldwin’s organization, it’s “rearguard action” against the decline and fall of civilization, and the split between it and the rest of the homo novis organization, the one about the World Greatest Expert on Everything, and the one about the offworld colonies.

I would love to have read each of these novels, but RAH just didn’t seem to want to take the time to work them out. Perhaps he didn’t feel like he HAD the time.

The Cat Who Walked Through Walls had something of the same problem.
Note on sources: The character of Kettle Belly Baldwin was from the short story “Gulf”, and the offworld colonies were referenced by name in “Starman Jones” and several other works.

Sure (although the details might be off).

Friday’s a couriour (I cannot spell that word)…a delivery woman. She gets captured and raped. She gets better. She vists her “family” in Australia. They throw her out. She goes to stay with the pilot and his family. World War 3 (or not) happens. She fights her way back to her HQ to find out she’s good at putting data together. She’s now a data analyst. Her mentor dies. She leaves Earth with a special fetus. She goes AWOL and meets up with the pilot’s family again and lives happily ever after.**

There’s no real plot. There’s no rising action, there’s no climax, there’s no falling action. It’s just a bunch of stuff that happens. That’s what I was getting at.

BTW; I suspect that Chronos is referring to the period during/after Heinlein had a major health issue in the late '60s/early '70s so “After Moon” and "Post-‘senile’ " should be the same period. (sorry for the confusion, I wasn’t comfortable using the ‘senile’ term. :slight_smile: )

Or, on preview, what ** BrotherCadfael ** said! :slight_smile:


I’ll agree that, as someone or other (how’s that for a cite?) noted, The Moon is a Harsh Mistress was Heinlein’s last thoroughly good novel. But the so-called “post-seniles” all contain at least some vintage Heinlein, and a couple are quite worth reading.

The whole “multiverse” concept was OK for one novel, but he kind of let it take over his last four or five books. I’m surprised he didn’t manage to rope Job into the mishmash while he was at it. I’ve never really liked multiple universe/shifting reality stories, anyway…

However, he isn’t alone in having one concept take over his last few novels. Asimov fell into much the same trap with his last few books, trying to wrap his robot stories and the Foundation universe into a single package, and Clarke did much the same with the Rama series. Neither was, to my mind, a success. The conclusion of To Sail Beyond the Sunset was at least more satisfying than either.

Note: Clarke is both still alive and still publishing, so it isn’t quite correct to speak of his “last” novel. However, most of what he is currently putting his name on are collaborations, and he seems to be at most the minor contributor.

I’m very shaky on my timeline of when Heinlein wrote which novels, so “post-senile” wasn’t meant to be taken particularly literally. The post-senile novels are the set of Really Really Bad books that he wrote towards the end of his life, excluding any good ones which happen to have been in between them. I’ll let you guys figure out exactly which ones those were.

And Barbarian, I started such a flowchart (or something) in this thread. After that thread died, I realized that I had missed a link: Douglas-Martin power screens are mentioned both in “The Roads must Roll” and the D. D. Harriman stories, linking them. But my Heinlein collection is woefully incomplete: I’ve really got to get myself a copy of Mistress, Space Cadet, and Tunnel in the Sky, at the very least. Actually, I’ve really got to get myself a copy of almost all of them, but those first.