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310 pages, Paperback
First published September 8, 2005
Here's a glimpse of Butler's gallery of heroes:
a vampire with the ability to sustain a web of complex, interdependent symbiotic relationships that include multiple mates (polyamory) and inter-species love;
a super-hero whose gift is an almost unimaginable level of--get ready now--not strength, not speed, not the power to destroy, but--empathy.
a nurturing, insect-like creature with multiple arms that serves as a gestational pod for humans
In The Parable of the Sower and The Parable of The Talents, Butler suggests that the only way to keep the human race from destroying itself through tribal warfare is to find a vision--a narrative--big enough to harness everyone's energy and turn it outwards. Butler proposed a "space race" as an example of an expansive-enough vision to provide that focus. I wonder if saving this planet could serve the same purpose, and provide more obvious and immediate rewards: like survival.
It was also in the Parables that she painted a portrait of a society in which only the ultra-rich could afford the gasoline and bodyguards necessary to drive (are we there yet?)--everyone else used the super-highways as enormous sidewalks, where the strong preyed on the weak and no one was safe.
What will I do now that I've read all her books? It's simple: Start re-reading them.
But before he could reach me, before I could taste his blood, two of his sons and one of his brothers leaped up from the front row, grabbed him, and dragged him down. They held him while he struggled beneath them, screaming. At first, it seemed that he wasn't making words. He was only looking at me, screaming. Then I began to recognize words: "Murdering black mongrel bitch..." and "What will she give us all? Fur? Tails?"