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TitleFor Us, The Living
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From Grandmaster Robert A. Heinlein comes a long-lost first novel, written in
1939 and never before published, introducing ideas and themes that would shape
his career and define the genre that is synonymous with his name.

JULY 12,1339

Perry Nelson is driving along the palisades when suddenly another vehicle
swerves into his lane, a tire blows out, and his car careens off the road and over a
bluff. The last thing he sees before his head connects with the boulders below is
a girl in a green bathing suit, prancing along the shore....

When he wakes, the girl in green is a woman dressed in furs and the sun-
drenched shore has transformed into snow-capped mountains. The woman,
Diana, rescues Perry from the bitter cold and takes him inside her home to rest
and recuperate.

Later they debate the cause of the accident, for Diana is unfamiliar with the

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Robert Heinlein was born in Butler, Missouri, the third of seven children. He
spent the majority of his youth in Kansas City, taking jobs at a young age to
supplement his family's income. It was apparent early on that Heinlein was a
child prodigy of the sort that sometimes appears in his fiction. He learned chess
at the age of four and took an early and abiding interest in astronomy, reading
voraciously on the subject and giving lectures as a young student. His 1924 high
school yearbook photo caption read, "He thinks in terms of the Fifth dimension,
never stopping at the Fourth."

After high school, Heinlein applied to Annapolis—submitting one hundred
letters of recommendation to his state senator—and graduated in 1929, twentieth
in his class, with the rank of ensign. He was married shortly after graduation,
though little is known of that union, which ended after approximately one year.
In 1932 he married Leslyn MacDonald, an intelligent and politically radical
woman who inspired many of his female characters.

Later that year, while serving aboard the destroyer Heinlein contracted
pulmonary tuberculosis and was hospitalized. By 1934, his continual bouts with
the disease rendered him disabled and forced his retirement from the military.
He went on to study mathematics and physics at the graduate school of the
University of California, though recurring illness forced his early withdrawal,
and he campaigned unsuccessfully for a district assembly seat in Hollywood.

In 1939, after a failed naval career and a humbling defeat in his political
endeavors, Heinlein turned to writing as a way to earn a living. This third career
choice proved lucrative. By the early 1940s, he had paid off a large mortgage
and was by all accounts a successful writer, having won the respect and
admiration of the science fiction community. His first novel,

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