|06-18-2010, 08:12 PM||#1|
Join Date: Aug 2009
Device: iPad, iPhone 4S
Red Prophet - Orson Scott Card
The second book in the Alvin Maker series by my favorite author, Orson Scott Card. The 'alternate history fantasy' really takes a turn to 'alternate history' in this book. Whereas the first book the history was just some hints and flavorings here and there to add texture to the story, this book really delves into a retelling of the shaping of America and the battle between the whites and the reds.
In this version of America -- we get Napolean being sent from France to fight here. There's a compelling and tragic tale about the Red man's battle to save his lifestyle and homeland against the encroaching whites -- that even set in fantasy -- does every bit as good and heart wrenching a job as did Dances With Wolves. I'm sure those who have some historical background with the likes of Napolean, La Fayette, Andrew Jackson and Harry Harrison will get a kick to see these people portrayed in this alternate and magical America that never was.
This book is essential to the story arc of Alvin Maker and we learn more about the Crystal City, a sort of utopia, that he is to build. However, the subject matter is a lot darker (can you say whites massacring reds) -- and it has none of the humor and charm of the first book where we fall in love with a precocious young boy who says the right things in the wrong way. There is none of the charming family moments of the first book.
Thing is -- you won't be able to put the book down. I can't say I enjoyed it as much as the first, or the one that comes next -- but it's not because the writing is any poorer. It's just not a fun chapter of our history to visit -- even an alternate and magical version of it.
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