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Shadow of the Giant: 4 (The Shadow Series)
 
 

Shadow of the Giant: 4 (The Shadow Series) [Kindle Edition]

Orson Scott Card
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Produktbeschreibungen

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Card's latest installment in his Shadow subseries (Ender's Shadow, etc.), which parallels the overarching series that began with Ender's Game (1985), does a superlative job of dramatically portraying the maturing process of child into adult. The imminent death of Bean, a superhuman 20-something Battle School graduate who suffers from uncontrolled growth due to a genetic disorder, leaves little time for Peter the Hegemon, Ender's older brother, to set up a single world government and for Bean and his wife and former classmate, Petra, to reclaim all their stolen children. When Card's focus strays from his characters into pure politics, the story loses power, but it's recharged as soon as he returns to the well-drawn interactions among Bean's Battle School classmates whose decisions will determine Earth's fate. They were trained to fight a (literally) single-minded alien enemy, but that war is over. Now, as young adults in command of human armies pitted against each other in messy conflicts with no clear solutions, Bean's old cohorts must help create a peaceful future for Earth after they're gone. Card makes the important point that there's always more than one side to every issue. Fans will marvel at how subtly he has prepared for the clever resolution.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Considering the dynasty of novels launched by Ender's Game (1984), perhaps Card ought to consider renaming his central protagonist. Though this is putatively the eighth book in the Ender saga, when considering the books as two quartets linked across a 1,000-year gap (a by-product of Ender's light-speed travel to Lusitania), it's the fourth of the sequence that began with Ender's Shadow (1999). Here, Card further develops the premise that the return of Ender's battle team to Earth was tantamount to introducing "two Alexanders, a Joan of Arc here and there, and a couple of Julius Caesars, maybe an Attila, and . . . a Genghis Khan" into the geopolitical fray. The tension between characters' personal fulfillment and collective obligations also comes to the fore, as couple Bean and Petra desperately search for their eight missing embryos stolen by the mad eugenicist of Shadow Puppets (2002), watch Bean's health deteriorate, and attempt to restore order to the world under hegemon Peter Wiggin. The emergence of several additional perspectives makes for a somewhat cumbersome narrative, but it doesn't much matter. Like Card's idolized Battle School alumni, novels in this saga (not to mention Card himself) have acquired an irresistible aura from early associations with boy-hero Ender Wiggin. Jennifer Mattson
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Produktinformation

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Dateigröße: 2216 KB
  • Seitenzahl der Print-Ausgabe: 384 Seiten
  • Verlag: Tor Books; Auflage: 1st (30. November 2009)
  • Verkauf durch: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ASIN: B003E74AHA
  • Text-to-Speech (Vorlesemodus): Aktiviert
  • X-Ray:
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 3.5 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (2 Kundenrezensionen)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: #82.392 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop (Siehe Top 100 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop)

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6 von 8 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen Alles wie gehabt... 6. März 2005
Von harrz
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
Ich kann mich kurz fassen: Orson Scott Card tritt auf der Stelle.
Die Karten werden neu gemischt und eine weitere Runde im globalen Machtpoker beginnt, mit altbekannten Battle School Absolventen an der Spitze der jeweiligen Machtblöcke. Zwar gelingt es Card erneut eine recht kurzweilige und unterhaltsame Lektüre vorzulegen, bequem an einem Wochenende zu lesen, aber es bleibt ein fahler Nachgeschmack. Das Gefühl man hätte das alles schon einmal gelesen, nämlich in den vorangegangenen Bänden "Shadow of the Hegemon" und "Shadow Puppets". Nur währt die Faszination von brillianten Strategien und dreisten Machtergreifungen nicht ewig, Charaktere und Schicksale bleiben weitgehend unverändert.
Eine der wenigen Neuerungen ist das Fehlen eines ausgemachten Bösewichtes, lauter Protagonisten mit besten Absichten schicken sich an die Welt ins Chaos zu stürzen. Und es gibt einen Bogenschluß zu den Ereignissen von "Ender's Game" und "Speaker for the Dead", mit dem aber noch lange nicht Schluß zu sein scheint. Die Grundsteine für eine nächste Fortsetzung werden gelegt und es bleibt abzuwarten ob Orson Scott Card die losen Enden der Ender- und Shadow-Reihen verknüpfen und zu einem echten Abschluß bringen wird.
Um Mißverständnissen vorzubeugen: Wer die Ender-Reihe nicht kennt sollte sie keinesfalls meiden nur weil Card hier etwas schwächelt, man ließe sich ein paar wirklich gute Bücher entgehen.
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4.0 von 5 Sternen Hard to put down 22. Oktober 2011
Von Zac
Format:Kindle Edition
Even though the books of this series after the opener "Ender's Shadow" have been criticized as not being Card at his best, I have to admit I found this book one of the best in the series. It moves fast, its packed with events and well-written scenes. As suggested by others, Card tries to tie a lot of loose ends in this one, but this doesn't detract from the enjoyment of the book. One criticism is that global politics and cultural stereotypes play a heavy role here, and at parts they might be a little naively weaved, or with too much focus in elements of our current society rather than possible future traits in the book's time. However Card uses these as tools in making critical comments on factors that would disturb attempts at world peace, from the psychological perspectives of the individual and that of whole cultures. Perhaps the point made is that cultures don't change that fast - or Card meets a limitation as a previous-generation writer. However, as in all Card books there is food for thought here, relevant to us as individuals and to the world, and a lot of fun to read. If you have worked yourself reading up to this book, and are happy with Card's strange pace in the other two post-Ender's Shadow books, then I think that you will enjoy this one. Note that this does not stand alone as a book, and you must have read all the other ones in the series to understand it. The criticism that it does not conclude Bean's story, will hopefully be answered by the next upcoming book in the series, scheduled to be released on Jan 2012.
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Amazon.com: 4.3 von 5 Sternen  198 Rezensionen
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4.0 von 5 Sternen Second best of the "Shadow" series, behind "Ender's Shadow" 16. Mai 2005
Von Billy Hollis - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Von Amazon bestätigter Kauf
Perhaps it's because Card knew exactly where he needed to be at the end of this book, but it just worked for me better than the last two. There's less outright war, and more political manuveuring than the last two books. The political machinations are more complex, yet somehow more believable this time around.

That plausibility might be a result of seeing the Battle School characters as human and therefore potentially flawed. In previous "Shadow" series books, the Battle School kids were all good guys, except for the cardboard cutout villian of Achilles. It fell to the other characters, mostly politicians, to display human fallibility.

This time, the Battle School grads have serious character flaws of their own, and these flaws lead them into big mistakes. They also get into more and better conflicts with each other, which enriches the dynamic of the book.

Characters are nicely done - a particular strength throughout Card's books. The tragic Bean, the acerbic Petra, the enigmatic Alai, the dashing Han Tzu - all are crisply drawn. I never, ever get characters confused with one another in Card's books, and certainly not in this one.

The character development of Peter Wiggin is especially well handled. We already know from the very first Ender book (Ender's Game) that Peter becomes a beloved leader, and that Ender writes Peter's "obituary" as the second part of the his book The Hive Queen and the Hegemon. Now we get to see the other side of that story, including what Peter did to arrive at that point and how he was induced to get Ender (of all people!) to write his unvarnished life story.

Not everything is tied up into a neat little package. The matter of Bean and Petra's children is handled well, but I wouldn't call the end result "neat".

The open-ended matter of Bean's children leaves enough room for a sequel, I suppose, if Card decides to go that way. But I'd be happy to just leave the story here. The adventure of the Battle School grads is pretty much resolved, and we are caught up to events mentioned at the end of Ender's Game.

If you've read the other three "Shadow" books, then you absolutely owe it to yourself to get the full end of the story by reading this one. If you liked "Ender's Shadow", but got bogged down in the other two sequels, I'd recommend giving the series another go just to finish off with this very satisfying completion.
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4.0 von 5 Sternen Satisfying Finale 31. Dezember 2005
Von Charles E. Stevens - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Taschenbuch|Von Amazon bestätigter Kauf
Unlike the Ender trilogy, which finished with more of a whimper than a bang, the Bean trilogy ends on a high note. Card wisely returns his main focus to the characters the reader has come to know and love, letting the individuals set the pace of the story instead abandoning character development for geopolitics. Even though the ultimate outcome (spoiler: a Hegemon-controlled Earth) is known to anyone who's read the Ender trilogy, Shadow of the Giant is still surprisingly suspenseful. The fates of characters such as Bean, Alai, and Virlomi are not resolved until near the end of the book, and Card keeps the reader guessing as to who will live and who will die. This is a smart strategy, as Card is at his best when he focuses his attention on the engaging characters he has created: the brilliant, passionate, and yet somehow quite innocent young adults formerly of Battle School. I can't help but think that the Ender trilogy would have been much more satisfying if Card had kept the focus on Ender instead of neglecting him for talk of aiua, alternate universes, and "children of the mind."

Shadow of the Giant closes the door on one chapter of the Ender saga and opens the door to another. For what is most interesting about this book is the ending: Card has left the options for further books in the series wide open. Will Bean be cured? Will Ender return to the series? What will happen with the children? For the first time since Ender's Shadow I find myself truly looking forward to the next edition in the Ender saga.
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3.0 von 5 Sternen A Long Ways from the Short Story 16. Juni 2005
Von James D. DeWitt - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Von Amazon bestätigter Kauf
"Shadow of the Giant" is the latest Card novel in the "Ender" universe. Not all readers know that "Ender's Game," the first novel, started from a short story. That short story still remains arguably Card's best single piece of writing. But after four novels in the "Ender" arc, and now another four novels in the "Shadow" arc, as well as a few short stories along the way, Card and the Ender universe are starting to run out of gas.

Card's first problem is that we know exactly how it is going to come out. Let's call this the Lucas Problem. Anyone who carefully read the first book knows what is going to happen. Card has to make the process interesting enough to hold our attention. He nearly succeeds, but is hampered by some other issues.

Card's second problem is that he knocked off the arch-villain Achilles at the end of the previous book. Since E. E. "Doc" Smith's "Skylark" series, thoughtful science fiction writers have known it's always a mistake to kill the bad guy early. "Giant" misses Achilles.

Card's third problem is that the series' most compelling character, Ender - Andrew Wiggins, the protagonist of the first four books - has long since left the scene. The primary protagonist of the "Shadow" series, Julian "Bean" Delphiki - a minor character in "Ender's Game" - is still dying of the same disease we have known about from the start.

So all that is left for readers is the problem described at the end of "Ender's Game" - a half a dozen or so teenage military geniuses loose on a deeply divided earth. As we watch them succumb, variously, to gene-meddling, megalomania, naivete and ennui, it turns out that the adults, the teachers, those same folks that trained Ender and the other children, had the solution all along. If I were a teenager reading "Giant," I'd be seriously annoyed.

Card is a good writer. He has also shown some terrific creativity in earlier books in the series, especially in "Speaker for the Dead." But in this book he sometimes substitutes political opinion for creativity - let's call this the Heinlein Problem, or, if you like, the Goodkind Problem - and it doesn't work.

The cumulative effect is that the book drags a bit, limps along a lot, and leaves you unsatisfied at the end. The Lucas Problem is there on every page. The Heinlein Problem annoys. Card can and has done much better. First time readers in Ender's universe will be completely bewildered and should not start here.

The plot has a few loose ends; I'd guess Card has left himself narrative threads to pick up in the future. That's fine. Ender's Universe is an interesting place. But he needs to let the creative juices revive for a while first.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Ender series full review 28. Februar 2007
Von Greek Reader - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Taschenbuch
I have read the whole ender series, but with a strange sequence which may have affected the way I view the different books in the series. The first book I have read was the Shadow of the Hegemon, thanks to a tourist that had left it in the library of a hotel in Skiathos island. This book got me hooked, but it confused me also as I didn't know if I should start reading the next books or the previous ones.

The general pattern in the whole series is:

The beginning book is Ender's Game. Then we have two subcategories, one the Shadow series (which, with the exception of the first book, take place on earth and are more within military strategy) and one the Ender series (which take place in space and are more into new sci-fi ideas). Shadow series probably can be read from everyone, while I guess that the Ender series (especially from Speaker for the Dead onwards) would be read mainly from sci-fi fans.

Below are my comments for the books of the series, in the order I have read them and a marking (10 is the highest mark):

Shadow of the Hegemon: The first book I have read, and which I could not leave from my hands. I finished it in 2 days. It was fast paced action, very smart plot and after reading it I believed that Orson Scot Card (OSC) has invented/re-invented a new genre of literature. That of military strategy and adventure combined with brilliance/mind games and hidden portions of romance. Such books always existed but this seemed to be THE book. It was like the way Dan Brown re-invented books with trivials and puzzles, together with fast paced adventure. I strongly recommend it to everybody that likes such type of books. (mark: 10)

Shadow puppets: The sequel to the above. I found it interesting but somehow boring as the above story developed little and the focus was on the characters (maybe too much focus so that it seemed to me that it was slightly mumbling jumbling. Strategy, brilliance and adventure seemed to be very low here. I would not recommend it for anybody to read it in isolate, unfortunately you have to read it if you want to go to the next book. I really believe that OSC made a mistake here (deliberately or not) as this book should have been told in 50-60 pages and be included in the previous or the next book. (mark: 6 but you will read it because you will want to read Shadow of the Giant)

Shadow of the Giant: (see below)

Ender's game: A really great book to read, probably the best of the series, however, as I had read its sequels first, when I reached the 80% of this book, I had predicted the end. However, it's at the highest standards of sci-fi, military strategy, adventure, brilliant mind games and very good depth in the human aspect of the characters. In comparison to the shadow series, it is more "space" sci-fi, while shadow series have much lesser sci-fi elements and are more down to earth. (mark: 10)

Speaker for the dead: Another great book, but different style. Less adventure, more human aspect, more maturity. Brilliance yes, but not military, sci-fi yes (some great ideas) but not spaceship style. (Mark: 9)

Xenocide: A good sequel of the previous novel. In certain points more brilliant, in other sections more boring, however is again a very good sci-fi book. The only flaw in these series (Speker for the dead, Xenocide, Children of the mind) is the idea behind one of the alien species described which I found outrageously extreme, however if you ignore it becomes first class reading. (Mark: 9)

Children of the mind: I think that OSC has wrapped up his case pretty badly in that one. It's a fair book except the fact that I felt that OSC mumbles jumbles for one third of the novel not having decided how to end it. In other critiques I have found it described as nice approach to moral dilemmas, however, moral dilemma is when you describe it once and make your choice, while here the dilemma is repeated and repeated... I felt like I was watching a movie worth 10 oscars and the end did not worth to be included even in a cheap video movie. And again, many open ends at the end (for possible sequels). (Mark: 7 but you will read it as you will be hooked from the previous ones).

Ender's shadow: Having read Enders Game and Shadow of the Hegemon, I found this book probably the best of the series, which of course is my subjective preference. I could characterize it as probably the best book I have read ever! Not to repeat myself, it has all that Shadow of the Hegemon and Ender's Game have, and even more...(Mark: the absolute 10).

Shadow of the Giant: When I read shadow puppets, I said, "that's it, OSC has lost either his talent or his appetite for good writing...", so I was pretty unwilling to read it. Fortunately I decided to, as it proved to be a good one, were I believe that OSC has nicely wrapped up his story, with two small flaws.

* The one is described below (its end needed to be slightly more complete) and,

* The other is the fact that although he describes certain smart battles, he does not focus enough on them as it seems that he is in a hurry to wrap all things up. It had all elements to become a masterpiece but it ended up being a good to read book (Mark: 9)

In general, both series have three categories of good stuff:

1) Some great sci-fi ideas (battle room, battle games, fantasy game, ansible, aia, Jane, in/out travel, raman varelse etc)

2) Great military strategy, mind games etc combined with adventure

3) In certain books, depth of characters, moral dilemmas etc

And two main bad stuff:

1) Mumbling jumbling in certain books which was completely unnecessary (either OSC wanted just to produce and sell another title - see shadow puppets- or he could not decide how the story will continue-see last book of Ender series).

2) One of the alien species described in the Ender series was so too outrageous even for sci-fi that made it look ridiculous. The idea behind it was brilliant in sci-fi terms, but he could try a different living organism...

Finally, OSC has left open ends in both series (probably for next sequels), however I believe that there are two things missing. a) the story of the Hive Queen and the Hegemon, told in a metaphorical manner so it means much for humanity. b) In ancient theatre, a story should end in a way that brings "katharsis" to the story, and the souls of the readers. I believe that the end of the shadow of the giant may be smart for commercial purposes but it was very unfair to the reader as it did not bring full "katharsis".
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Best since Ender's Shadow and one some of the author's best work 8. Februar 2006
Von J. A Magill - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format:Taschenbuch
Shadow of the Giant stands along with Ender's Game and Speaker of the Dead as Orson Scott Card's best work in Enderverse, complete with interesting characters and an engaging plot. Like the previous books in the `Shadow' series, Shadow of the Giant continues to follow the life of Bean, the now giant, not quite human, who served as Ender's second in Battle School, at least as retold in Ender's Shadow. Readers who have followed Bean through to this fourth and perhaps final book will not be disappointed.

Several factors work in `Giant's favor. Card deemphasizes his juvenile and often torturous read of international relations in general and military strategy in particular. Readers who in the last book found themselves hitting their heads wondering why any nation's military would behave as irrationally as they did, particularly regarding the strange archaic idea of national status strictly as a function of number of square miles controlled, will find some relief. Card here returns to what made Ender's Game, Ender's Shadow, and Speaker for the Dead excellent reads, namely focusing on characters and their internal lives. Particularly noteworthy as he looms large over all of the books in both series is Card's exploration of the motivation and conflict for Ender's brother Peter, who here at last ceases to be a two-dimensional Genghis Khan and instead becomes someone readers can relate to and with whom we can sympathize.

Some readers may take offense at the writer's political diatribes rather inelegantly folded into this work, particular his rants against Islam. Again, I took it about as seriously as the other political and military thoughts peppered throughout the series, most of which either lack sense or lack nuance. Card writes well and thus readers do well to focus on plot and character that he develops instead of spending much time attacking his thoughts in other areas.

While Card leaves open a glimmer of potential for continuing this story, he also gives the reader something that has eluded all his work since Ender's Game, a satisfying ending that does not require another novel. For this alone, fans of Card's are sure to enjoy this work.
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