V.'s Reviews > Seventh Son

Seventh Son by Orson Scott Card
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it was ok
bookshelves: read-reviewed-2012-pt2

This started well. We open with the difficult birth of our hero, so it literally begins at the beginning. But it's well written and you think okay so that's the intro, now the story.

Nope.

More intro, more set up, lots of exposition and establishing of things that don't need to be established.

The writing, the premise, the characters are all fine. The historical stuff, even the made up stuff, is all well conceived and interesting.

But there's no story. It's all set up.

This books was clearly written as part of a series and has no contained story of its own, just a lot of vignettes of a boy's life as he goes from zero to about ten. And by the time I got to the end and nothing's happened it really felt like an indulgent, lazy piece of writing. Must be nice to have fans who'll let you get away with that sort of crap.

Then there's the obvious religious parallels with Christianity in general and Mormonism in particular. Christ on a bike it's clumsily handled. It starts feeling less like an adventure and more a tale of destiny. The problem with that is it gives the writer licence to just make things happen for no reason (it's the will of the Divine, don't you know) and you end up with convenient escapes from tricky situations.

Even with all that i liked the premise of an alternate America with magic and I think I would have still given it the benefit of the doubt if it had had an actual story (Star Wars is part of a series, but it doesn't end when Luke decides to leave the farm).

I also took a look at the first few chapters of the next book in the series (I really did want him to prove me wrong) but it doesn't get better it actually gets much, much worse. Going back over scenes in the first book from a different character's perspective, like it wasn't slow and tedious enough the first time.

Nice idea, poor effort.
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