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Empire (Tor Science Fiction) by Orson Scott…
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Empire (Tor Science Fiction) (edition 2007)

by Orson Scott Card

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1,074467,857 (3.12)32
Member:tyler.williams
Title:Empire (Tor Science Fiction)
Authors:Orson Scott Card
Info:Tor Books (2007), Edition: 1st, Mass Market Paperback, 368 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:*****
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Empire by Orson Scott Card

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Showing 1-5 of 46 (next | show all)
This gets 4 stars, not so much for the story (3 stars) as the message. The message is clear, especially in the first part of the book & the afterword by Card - the screamers on the left & right of our 2 party system are becoming the icons & dividing the country. Moderates aren't tolerated. If you don't fully agree with one side, then you must support the other & you're an idiot not worthy of an opinion.

As ludicrous as it is, it's all too true. I see it frequently because I disagree with hot button topics on both sides. The country really is divided along urban/rural lines & most people don't really care - they just want to be left alone.

This is told from a moderate Republican point of view, but doesn't spare fanatics on either side & often pokes fun at both, e.g. the good guys rely on Fox News almost exclusively. Many times names are left out, but the inference is obvious. Card points out in the afterword that this story was thought of else where & he doesn't think this is the way it would really happen. It's a cautionary tale not an attempt at reality.

The story was quite good in the subtle machinations until about halfway through & then the scenario got a bit ludicrous. Well before a long internal dialog gives away the ending, most will guess it. Still, it's a good one & all too plausible, especially in light of the historical examples given.

There's a lot of action, most of which was fun. The heroes were a bit too much the only game in town, but I suppose that was better than a cast of thousands. There were a couple of real shockers along the way, too.

All in all, it was quite a good read. I realize this is just the first in a series, but I'm not sure I'm interested in reading further. It stands quite well alone. ( )
  jimmaclachlan | Aug 18, 2014 |
A HUGELY disappointing book. The only reason I gave it 2 stars is because the concept of modern civil war on American soil is not only disturbingly fascinating, but also not 100% implausible. But the execution, ultimately, leaves you cold. Card is famous, for better or worse, for doing a lot of "message" books, but here I'm not even sure what the message IS. That we should all get along? That we should arm ourselves, just in case? That this country is ripe for a dictatorial takeover? OK, so it fails as a "message" book. Another thing Card does well, as a rule, is characterization, making you understand and care for characters who are different from you. Failure on that front again- the main characters are cardboard cutouts, and the few interesting ones are completely enigmatic by the end of the story. Yes, some of the action sequences and the sci-fi parts are interesting, but not enough to recommend this book- not by a long shot.

By the way, if you are thinking of reading the sequel in hopes that it gets better, DON'T. Everything you disliked about this book gets magnified in the sequel. And what gets me is that I know Card is better than that; hence the disappointment. ( )
  MashaK99 | Jun 11, 2013 |
Empire opens with intrigue and promises to draw the reader in for a captivating look at a potential future for America, but it slows in the middle and fizzles at the end.

Orson Scott Card here envisions the potential downfall of America’s stability, and he creates a unique path to the nation’s collapse. In the book, political incivility reaches new heights as Right and Left collide in violent hostilities. As Card himself describes at the end of the book, modern political discourse has gotten so full of vitriol that it does not have too far to go before it may spill over into violent actions. This book stands as a fictional representation of what such a conflict would look like.

Ultimately, Empire slides too far into political commentary and the story’s plot devolves from intriguing to farcical by the book’s conclusion. Card has done a great job to envision a novel picture of America’s future, but the book feels rushed and poorly-written as it nears its end. ( )
  QuietedWaters | May 22, 2013 |
This imaginative novel of the near future is both a fast-paced thriller and an interesting, original thought experiment on where the current polarization of our society might take us. Which makes it a powerful commentary on the poor state of civil discourse in the USA today. ( )
  nmele | Apr 6, 2013 |
Thinly veiled exploration...actually, not veiled at all. Explores what would happen if the current president, who is never outright named, was assassinated: who would do it, how would they hide it, what would be the motivation, who would oppose them. Written in the OSC style of presenting behavior deductions with the little tail at the end for a sequel but leaves a figurative bad taste in the mouth. Reread Ender's Game to wash it out. ( )
  EhEh | Apr 3, 2013 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Orson Scott Cardprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Warner, BobCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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To Cyndie and Jeremy
for finding the balance
between the law and the life
and for sharing Victor and Cataan
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"Treason only matters when it is committed by trusted men."
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0765355221, Mass Market Paperback)

The American Empire has grown too fast, and the fault lines at home are stressed to the breaking point. The war of words between Right and Left has collapsed into a shooting war, though most people just want to be left alone.

The battle rages between the high-technology weapons on one side, and militia foot-soldiers on the other, devastating the cities, and overrunning the countryside. But the vast majority, who only want the killing to stop, and the nation to return to more peaceful days, have technology, weapons and strategic geniuses of their own.

When the American dream shatters into violence, who can hold the people and the government together? And which side will you be on?

Orson Scott Card is a master storyteller, who has earned millions of fans and reams of praise for his previous science fiction and fantasy novels. Now he steps a little closer to the present day with this chilling look at a near future scenario of a new American Civil War.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:21:12 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

The American Empire has grown too fast, and the fault lines at home are stressed to the breaking point. The war of words between Right and Left has collapsed into a shooting war, though most people just want to be left alone. The battle rages between the high-technology weapons on one side, and militia foot-soldiers on the other, devastating the cities, and overrunning the countryside. But the vast majority, who only want the killing to stop and the nation to return to more peaceful days, have technology, weapons and strategic geniuses of their own.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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