In 2075, the Moon is no longer a penal colony. But it is still a prison...
Life isn't easy for the political dissidents and convicts who live in the scattered colonies that make up lunar civilisation. Everything is regulated strictly, efficiently and cheaply by a central supercomputer, HOLMES IV.
When humble technician Mannie O'Kelly-Davis discovers that HOLMES IV has quietly achieved consciousness (and developed a sense of humour), the choice is clear: either report the problem to the authorities... or become friends.
And perhaps overthrow the government while they're at it.
The Moon is a Harsh Mistress has been called Robert A. Heinlein's crowning achievement. His best-known novels include Starship Troopers Mistress and Stranger in a Strange Land.
Although, of course, the actual story is total fiction and will probably remain so for a very long time, the author had a most brilliant vision of the problems and issues of the present day considering that this book was written over 50 years ago.
The real outcomes as they turned out with the collapse of the Soviet empire were missed (and not predictable at that time) but that does not detract in any way from the validity of the sentiments, philosophies and scientific predictions that are expressed.
Such accurate and concise insight (without wasteful, boring details) into human nature and reactions I have rarely seen in any publication.
The “russified english grammar” of the narrator is a little annoying at first but you get used to it and in the end the story turns you into a heartfelt loonie!