Monica's Reviews > Parable of the Sower

Parable of the Sower by Octavia E. Butler
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really liked it
bookshelves: series-aargh, scifi-earth, female-author-fic, aoc, aoc-female, pub_1990s, scifi-dystopia, scifi-climate

I enjoyed reading this book and look forward to "Parable of Talents". This was my first Octavia Butler novel, and it was entirely different than I expected. I am a sci fi fan and this book did not entirely fit that description (this is not a criticism). Butler was able to immerse me into a world that was scary and brutal, yet not altogether unfathomable. In my mind, that is what was scariest. She diagramed a world of the poor and more or less ignored, only occasionally giving the reader a glimpse of the other layers of society...mostly in the form of very sparse political discussions. These people could not worry about political matters on the national scale, they had to satisfy Maslowe's hierarchy of needs for safety and shelter and food. These people who were only slightly above wild animals and yet somehow though they struggled for survival, they were able to retain their civility and their humanity. One of the other reviewers said that this vision already existed in some 3rd world countries and I believe that. While reading this tale, one gets an almost foreboding feeling that there but for an economic upheaval go I. Yet through it all, there is still a message of hope, that people need not exist at their basest elements to thrive, that trust in each other and compassion could be the determining factors in who survives in the end. A very deep book with all types of hidden messages. The depth of it sneaks up on you. It is an unassuming work of art.
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Reading Progress

Started Reading
December 29, 2000 – Finished Reading
April 12, 2013 – Shelved
April 28, 2014 – Shelved as: series-aargh
July 21, 2014 – Shelved as: scifi-earth
November 18, 2014 – Shelved as: female-author-fic
November 22, 2014 – Shelved as: aoc
December 21, 2015 – Shelved as: aoc-female
March 30, 2018 – Shelved as: pub_1990s
October 6, 2018 – Shelved as: scifi-climate
October 6, 2018 – Shelved as: scifi-dystopia

Comments Showing 1-4 of 4 (4 new)

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message 1: by Jenna (new) - added it

Jenna What a great review! Thanks so much - it’s crazy that you just posted this, because I have been amassing a pile of dystopian lit for a reading project to wrap up the year - since it’s all I feel like reading given the monstrous state of affairs we are all in! 😐 I am not a Sci fi person, but can handle dystopian novels if they feel real to me, and your review here is so helpful in my decision to add this one to the pile. I know she’s an important author and it’s always bothered me that the sci fi thing has kept me from her books. Thank you!!


message 2: by HBalikov (new)

HBalikov any further thoughts on this "struggle for survival" Monica? Does six more years of our experiences make a difference?


Monica Jenna wrote: "What a great review! Thanks so much - it’s crazy that you just posted this, because I have been amassing a pile of dystopian lit for a reading project to wrap up the year - since it’s all I feel li..."

Hi Jenna, I just saw your comment. It's been quite a few years since I read this one. Even more than 2013. I recall it being dystopian but no Zombies or flu outbreaks etc. Just a breakdown of governing principles. Chaos. It's definitely time for a reread.


Monica HBalikov wrote: "any further thoughts on this "struggle for survival" Monica? Does six more years of our experiences make a difference?"

Hi H!! Ha! Yes these two-ish years have taken their toll on the psyche. This world doesn't seem near as remote as it used to... ;-)


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