First of all: Of the two recent Card novels (this and The Lost Gate), I much preferred this one. I recommend reading this one and not bothering with The Lost Gate.
So, I have recently realized that my book reviews are often far more about me than about the book. Some people write in journals. Others blog. I write book reviews.
It is in the spirit of this realization that I record the following: I am a copyediting/typesetting geek. As I was reading Pathfinder, these two thoughts occurred to me within about two sentences of each other: "Wow, sometimes I think a few of Card's characters should be just a teensy bit less bitter and cynical." And "I wonder what font this is. The em dashes are so lovely!" And to me, each thought was an equally valid evaluation of the book.
But since you probably care more about the plot and writing than about the lovely em dashes, let me say that I enjoyed it thoroughly, just as much as I enjoyed most of the Ender and Shadow books, although it was very hard to remember that this was the same author because the topic was so different. Much more of a fantasy feel for me, although the story is still firmly based in Card's speculative science.
Also, it is the first of a trilogy, but Card does not do that thing I hate: leaving a book without closure. While I look forward to reading the rest of the trilogy, I will not find myself cursing Card in his grave if he dies before he finishes it (although, in the wake of his recent stroke, he promised not to die before finishing his current series, so I suppose I needn't worry). :)
It should also be noted that I do not just read the actual story contained in a book. I also read the front matter, the back matter, everything there is to read--I actually almost always scan the copyright page, just because I like it. It's part of the experience. Brice, on the other hand, never even glances at the text surrounding the text. A decidedly amusing moment in our recent past was when I was talking to Brice about Pathfinder, which I had just finished. And just this once, I had read the book without reading the acknowledgments. And just this once, he had only so far read the acknowledgments. It was hilarious (you probably had to be there). (And it probably was about 1 a.m. when we found it so funny.)
Rating: PG, as far as I can remember. Yes, some violence, but not a ton.