Six Impossible Things

A Blog About Fiction and Reading

Seventh Son

7th SonSeventh Son by Orson Scott Card

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I wish I could say that I’ve been busy recently, but to be honest, I just haven’t found much desire to read lately.  I’ve turned toward other hobbies lately, including some graphic novels, but for the most part, I haven’t had the patience or time to want to read lately.

Seventh Son is a book I wanted to read because I was getting in to Iron Maiden again a few months ago, and I wanted to see if there was a correlation between the book and the concept album Seventh Son of a Seventh Son.  I don’t know enough about the lyrics on the album yet to draw a conclusion, but the book was interesting.  It’s about a boy who’s born as the seventh son to a seventh son, making him a key player in the fight between good and evil.  Along the way, Orson Scott Card takes the opportunity to draw a line between ritual and faith, in an attempt to blur that line.  Apparently, the people who formed the base of the United States were made up of the outcasts from British society, and among those outcasts were those who still played around with Earth magic, to the point of making wards and hexes as part of daily life.  Transported to the colonies of the Americas, they pick up where they left off and continue with that sort of living.  It’s an interesting take on the formation of the US, and it makes for a semi-compelling story.

As much as I liked the theme of the novel, though, I found that I didn’t like the overall story as much.  It’s neat to watch a child grow into his awesome powers without realizing what he’s doing, but I found that the book is more a lengthy exposition to a grander saga.  I don’t mind sagas, but I prefer that each chapter of the saga have a clearly defined beginning, middle, and end.  I don’t deal well with Empire Strikes Back-type cliffhangers, where the key element of the story is left unresolved.  I felt like that was what happened with this book.

I suppose it’s possible that I expected too much from the book.  After all, Ender’s Game, by the same author, is a classic example of science fiction and good storytelling, so I was expecting something along the same lines with Seventh Son.  I was disappointed, to say the least.

I may return to the series to see what else happens to Alvin Jr., but as of right now, there are too many other books I hope to read instead.

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October 9, 2006 - Posted by | Adult Fiction, Reviews

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