Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Review: Pathfinder

Author: Orson Scott Card
Page: 672
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Source: Library
Synopsis (from Amazon):
A powerful secret. A dangerous path.

Rigg is well trained at keeping secrets. Only his father knows the truth about Rigg's strange talent for seeing the paths of people's pasts. But when his father dies, Rigg is stunned to learn just how many secrets Father had kept from him--secrets about Rigg's own past, his identity, and his destiny. And when Rigg discovers that he has the power not only to see the past, but also to change it, his future suddenly becomes anything but certain.

Rigg’s birthright sets him on a path that leaves him caught between two factions, one that wants him crowned and one that wants him dead. He will be forced to question everything he thinks he knows, choose who to trust, and push the limits of his talent…or forfeit control of his destiny.

If you ask me do I like Sci-Fi, I'll probably say it depends on the book. If you pressure me to say more, do I like Science Fiction in general, I'll say I haven't read enough to be considered a fan. On a blog hop a few weeks ago, it was asked whether bloggers liked Sci-Fi. One blogger said they didn't normally read Sci-Fi, but enjoyed the works of Orson Scott Card. I didn't recognize the name and wondered why I never read a book by him. It turns out that I was planning to when I received my hold of Pathfinder by Orson Scott Card from the library.

This story is epic. I don't mean epic in the sense of "extremely awesome" though it could also be considered that way, but epic in the sense that this is a huge story. It's the kind of story that teaches an important lesson, a world I will always remember. A story that frightens me, but addicts me too. Other epic stories include the Harry Potter series, the Star Wars books, and the movie Avatar.

There are many main characters in Pathfinder. Ram and Rigg mainly narrate though. Ram is on a kind of futuristic space ship leaving Earth to create a new colony since there's no space on Earth. We learn that technology had greatly advanced, and that the humans of Earth are in trouble. On the other hand, there is Rigg, a young boy who lives on the outside of a small town with Father and who has the amazing ability of seeing all paths left by living beings. Hence the name Pathfinder. I found that Ram isn't completely relatable, but by the end of the book I liked him as a character. Rigg is far more relatable, but because we see much more about him, his life and his adventures.

One of the best and worst things about this book is how smart it is. Honestly, the characters were all quick witted and knew a lot. Just thinking about all the stuff the talents brought hurt my head. It's like learning something huge that changes your whole view of the world. Sometimes it's hard to understand. Then there's a click in your head and for a second, it makes perfect sense and you get it, but then a second later you don't understand again. I never fully understand the basis of the story because there was so much to it. So much detail and thoughts. It made me marvel at how clever it was, but I also didn't like that I couldn't understand how the characters reached the right conclusions so easily.

The plot was filled with twists and turns. 600+ pages means there must be a lot of plot to keep the story going and there always was. It was just so much fun to read. I'd call it a masterpiece, and I think Orson Scott Card is some kind of genius for writing this.

It may look like a simple Sci-Fi read, but it isn't just that. I had a hard time calling it completely Sci-Fi since (forgive me for how cheesy this sounds) it was so much more. The story included friendship, family, politics, war, greed, humanity, etc. Pathfinder is probably a perfect story for me. However, this story isn't for everyone. It's long and has a fair bit of adventure in it. Some people may not like that it isn't a light read, but if anyone is interested I definitely recommend they read this.

Overall, I couldn't stop reading this book. It took me by surprise and I loved it. I wish I had more time to read it and digest it all, but I'm definitely looking for sequels. This story gets 5 stars because of it's brilliant story telling, plot and characters.


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