1 title per month from Audible’s entire catalog of best sellers, and new releases.
Access a growing selection of included Audible Originals, audiobooks and podcasts.
You will get an email reminder before your trial ends.
Your Premium Plus plan is $14.95 a month after 30 day trial. Cancel anytime.
Buy for $20.97

Buy for $20.97

Pay using card ending in
By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Publisher's Summary

Robert A. Heinlein is widely and justly regarded as the greatest practitioner of the art of science fiction who has ever lived. Here are two of his greatest short novels:

Gulf, in which the greatest super-spy of them all is revealed as the leader of a league of supermen and women who can’t quite decide what to do with the rest of us. And Lost Legacy, in which it is proved that we are all members of that league - or would be, if we but had eyes to see.

This collection also contains two great stories, a pair of the master’s finest: one on the nature of being, the other on what it means to be a man.

©1981 Robert A. Heinlein (P)2012 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

“The word that comes to mind for him is essential. As a writer - eloquent, impassioned, technically innovative - he reshaped science fiction in a way that defined it for every writer who followed him.... He was the most significant science fiction writer since H. G. Wells.” (Robert Silverberg)
“He made footsteps big enough for a whole country to follow.... We proceed down a path marked by his ideas. He showed us where the future is.” (Tom Clancy)

What listeners say about Assignment in Eternity

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    170
  • 4 Stars
    127
  • 3 Stars
    78
  • 2 Stars
    14
  • 1 Stars
    3
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    185
  • 4 Stars
    120
  • 3 Stars
    42
  • 2 Stars
    7
  • 1 Stars
    3
Story
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    156
  • 4 Stars
    110
  • 3 Stars
    75
  • 2 Stars
    16
  • 1 Stars
    5

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

You'll like it because you can think...

This is classic Heinlein, spinning one of his classic story-lines...

Heinlein believed that people who read Sci-Fi are a bit more intelligent than the average member of society. He was not a fan of "Readability Formulas" that suggested authors write at a grade level no higher than 7.81 so that the average person could keep up with the information being presented; Rather his opinion seemed to be that if a person is presented with information written at a higher level, they would naturally learn to comprehend at a higher level if that information was presented in such a way as to make the reader WANT to understand it.

Heinlein motivated people to become smarter by writing enjoyable Science Fiction that was not only fun to read, but was also designed to help the reader become more imaginative and well rounded in a variety of subjects. Heinlein didn't just write to provide the reader with a little escapism, he wrote to "teach". He frequently motivated readers by making them feel as if they were a part of a secret club, open only to the more intelligent... "Someone that could think, and therefore learn to think even better". He tried to make the reader feel just a little "special".

The above is also pretty much the basis for his book "Assignment in Eternity". The book starts out as light Sci-Fi, but gradually becomes more in-depth so that the smarter the reader is, the more enjoyment they get from nuances and lessons buried in the story.

"Intelligence" aside, it's a fun read, even if a bit dated (although being a little dated doesn't detract from the story-line)... It's well worth the credit... Besides, who doesn't like being in a secret club? ;)

17 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Classic Science Fiction

This collection of short stories still plays well 60 years after it first hit the shelves. While delivering a look into some of the attitudes and morality from the 1950s, we can see that people have not changed all that much through the passage of time. This one made the miles go by quickly.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Love Heinlein, and now Pinchot

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

This book has 3 fun and thought provoking stories that move quickly. Bronson Pinchot does a great job (I also love his Bronson Pinchot Project) bringing the characters to life.

8 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

For Heinlein Fans Only

These are four short tales by Science Fiction Grand Master Robert Heinlein. They all date to early on in his career and do not represent his best work. Jerry Was a Man is perhaps the best story in this collection and, unfortunately, the shorted. It's a satire having to do with genetically altered animals which are exploited as expendable laborers or -- as is the case with an intelligent miniature elephant -- custom-made pets for rich people. The narration is OK, but doesn't add any excitement to the tales. If you have never read any Heinlein, I would recommend The Moon is a Harsh Mistress, Double Star or Starship Troopers. Those are much better books and represent the Grand Master at his finest.

10 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Must have for any Heinlein Fan.

If you could sum up Assignment in Eternity in three words, what would they be?

Heinlein Early Years

What did you like best about this story?

The roots to many later novels by the grandmaster. You can see the development of the concepts that run through many of his later works.

What does Bronson Pinchot bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Awesome Characterization!! I had already feel in love with his narration of Glory Road!! I loved the life he gave to many old favorite characters.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

I doubt that Hollywood will touch any of these stories as is. Look what they did to Starship Troops and Puppet Masters.

Any additional comments?

I keep hoping that Expanded Universe would be converted to Audio. This was a good additional to the audio library of Heinlein work.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

USING LANGUAGE UNUSUAL TO HER AGE AND SEX

WHATS XXXXX XYOUR GAMEX XXXXX
The first time I tried listening to this I did not realize it was four short stories. The first story Gulf, is pretty long and pretty silly. I listened for two hours and deleted it from my player. Later, I found out it was four stories, so I started over. I tried again for over two hours on the first story and ended up skipping to the next story.

ELSEWHEN
This story is better, but not by much. This involves time travel to alternate earths and the different concepts on different societies is interesting. The moral of the story seems to be that you have to believe.

LOST LEGACY
I liked this story, and it seemed to be quite deep. It also seemed a bit liberal for Heinlein, a lot different from the man who wrote Starship Troopers. This group of people try to change the world to make it more peaceful. They use telepathy, immortal god like people and the Boys Scouts. I thought it would make a great comic book.

Jerry Was A Man
This story was excellent. It was a sort of satire on Intelligence, slavery and what it means to be human. It may have been one of the best things I have ever read from RAH.

I am not crazy about the narrator, nothing I can but my finger on, and not bad enough to keep me from enjoying the book, he just ain't my favorite.

16 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Early Heinlein

Robert A Heinlein's Assignment in Eternity is a collection of four novellas, some which are quite brief. While published as a collection in the 50's, the material represents his work from the late 30's and 40's. The tales explore various themes which Heinlein more fully fleshed out in later full length novels. The themes include progressing beyond the current accepted limitations of man, moving through a multiverse, tapping into unused human mental potential and the nature of being human.

This is early Heinlein that displays his capacity for ideas and concepts that more fully developed would result in later works that are regarded as not only his finest efforts, but became the defining stories of science fiction in the early part of the 2nd half of the 20th century.

The narration is excellent with superb character distinction and smooth pacing.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

You know… this book really sucks.

It is neither a short story collection nor a book. With at least 10 unrelated “main” characters. All 5 books / sections / chapters are good. It is RAH. But… they are defiantly unrelated. The narration is excellent.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Dated Heinlein, well read, interesting still.

Short stories collection written in the forties, published in the fifties, dated with references to race and sex stereotypes of the time while still managing to challenge those stereotypes. Impressive guesses at technologies, pocket phone, genetic manipulation as eg. good light reading.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Good stories, but dated

This is a collection of Heinlein’s stories written in the mid-1940s. Heinlein liked to speculate on scientific & philosophical questions popular in his day.

What if there were humans more evolved than most of the rest? What if, as was thought at the time, most folks only used a small percentage of their brains? What would happen if they learned to access the unused parts?

The stories don’t stand up today. There’s usually a maximum of one woman in each one. Heinlein did try to make his female characters more than set decoration, with limited success.

RH was forward thinking about race, but subtle racism still sneaks into his prose, not to mention ideas that skate right in the edge of eugenics, without quite going over the line.

And EVERYONE smokes.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for LC
  • LC
  • 03-15-21

Some interesting stories in this collection

Although mixed, I liked the ideas in these stories and found them interesting and enjoyable