Another Strugatsky masterpiece: The Inhabited Island

I've always thought that Westerners writing dystopian fiction was kind of funny, as the worst things they can conceive are pretty much "the Soviet Union." The imaginations of Russian authors Boris and Arkady Strugatsky were not so hampered.

The Inhabited Island is another phenomenal story of cultural collapse.

Maxim is a human from Earth sent searching the stars for inhabitable planets and sapient life. His mission is to make contact and report their cultures to his central government. When Maxim's spaceship abruptly fails he lands for repairs on a world he is sent to survey, everything goes sideways. Culturally, the race he has found has no concept of anything 'off-world' but they do have nuclear weapons and a geo-political situation that really looks familiar…

Fantastic characters, backward social policies, wars that never end, and tales of bureaucracy that could only have come from the Soviet bloc make every Strugatsky novel hard to put down.

The Inhabited Island by Boris and Arkady Strugatsky via Amazon