Friday, April 29, 2011

Orson Scott Card: Shadow of the Giant

In this conclusion of the Shadow series, Card continues with the ongoing wars between the major powers of China, the Muslim League, and India, while focusing Peter’s attempt to unify the world.

It becomes clear that while the Battle School graduates remain on Earth, there will always be powers that will want them to start wars and conquer. Because of this, Graff and Rackham find these graduates and proposes a way out: ship out on your own colony and rule your own world. While this is intriguing to some, others love being in control of their home country.

While these graduates simmer on this idea, Peter is continuing to perform the duties of the Hegemon. He enlists the help of the Rwanda government and Bean’s giant (pun intended) reputation. By this time, Bean has grown to extreme heights, and it’s obvious he does not have much time left. So, Rackham proposes to Bean that he take his babies with his condition on a ship at relativistic speeds, and stay young until the Earthside scientists find a cure. Petra is also aware of this plan, and fully intends on coming with Bean with the normal babies on this journey. However, before the ship can sail, Bean and Petra must help Peter in unifying the world under his rule. With Alai the Caliph, Virlomi the goddness, and Han Tsu the emperor, Peter has an extremely difficult path ahead of him. Will these powers fall in their own pride, or will these powers unite against Peter?

Once again, Card is able to maintain the bigger story of the wars, while also developing the characters of the story. We find Petra desperate to find her babies, and also afraid that Bean is hiding things from her. Does he intend on letting her go on the ship? These doubts permeate through her brain, though she does not allow herself to fully believe it. We find Peter to be more likable than in any of the other books, and we realize that he is finally coming to terms with his true self. This is definitely one of my favorites in the series, and a fantastic conclusion.

To purchase this book, check out
Shadow of the Giant (Ender, Book 8)Science Fiction Books)

For other reviews of the Ender's Saga and Shadow series, check out these links:
Ender's Game (13 Aug. 2010)
Ender in Exile (23 Sept. 2010)
Speaker for the Dead (8 Apr. 2011)
Xenocide (9 Apr. 2011)
Children of the Mind (11 Apr. 2011)
Ender's Shadow (15 Apr. 2011)
Shadow of the Hegemon (19 Apr. 2011)
Shadow Puppets (25 Apr. 2011)
Shadow of the Giant
Stay tuned for Card’s new book, Shadows in Flight, which attempts to connect the Ender and Shadow series!

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