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Survivor by Octavia E. Butler

Survivor (1978)

by Octavia E. Butler

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220652,892 (3.94)23
  1. 00
    Unexpected Stories by Octavia E. Butler (sandstone78)
    sandstone78: One of the two newly published stories in Unexpected Stories gives background on the Kohn and on Diut, a major character in Butler's disowned novel Survivor.

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Octavia Butler is my fav female sci fi writer. This book was hard to find but an inter-library load finally got it in my hands. She didn't like this book. I have to admit it's not her best but it was still pretty good. I'm glad I located a copy to complete my reading of all of her books. ( )
  LisaHicksStoryteller | Aug 12, 2014 |
I really enjoyed this book. I liked the non-humanity of the Kohn and particularly how they communicate with their skin color. The setup was moderately brilliant in my opinion: not only the political situation of the different Kohn tribes and the humans, but also the way the story is introduced, starting with the recently released Allanah after her kidnapping by the Tehkohn. Within the first chapter, the differences between the Tehkohn and Garkohn are illustrated, together with Allanah's position and the troubles she is facing. Allanah is a most resilient heroine with great mental strength. I really liked her fosterparents, and her fostermother in particular, who shows a mental flexibility that unfortunately her fosterfather is lacking. The missionary humans in general I dislike. They display all the negative traits one may expect of such a group and only occasionally (Allanah's fosterfather)the earnestness one would hope to see. Allanah's relationship with Diut shows some less palatable aspects in the beginning, such as him beating her, but admittedly, these spring from cultural differences, and he soon mends his ways. Although he is her superior in Kohn society, Allanah's wild-human-outlook ensures this is not an irritant to the reader. Overall, I really liked this book, and I really don't understand why the author herself didn't. I'm very glad to have read it, and it even sheds some light on events in the Wildseed universe (although you could read this separately). ( )
  zjakkelien | Nov 10, 2013 |
As I understand it, Butler later disavowed this book, which fits into her other stories about Clay’s Ark and the involuntary transformation of humanity. Alanna is a “wild human,” rescued by strict God-fearing Missionaries on Earth and taught to at least mouth the same prayers they do, though her background (and to some extent her race) keep her apart from the largely-white community. When the Missionaries get a chance to leave a dying Earth and settle on a new planet, they don’t realize that they’re being used and, in some senses, enslaved by the aliens they find. Another competing group of aliens kidnaps Alanna, and when she’s rescued two years later no one—to some extent not even Alanna—is sure where here loyalties lie. It’s easy to see Butler’s themes—gender, race, power and power plays, coerced consent and the accommodations people make to survive—but it is true that the story jumps around more, and does a bit less with the alien/human encounter, than Butler at her peak mastery did. ( )
  rivkat | Apr 26, 2013 |
I borrowed this book from the library. I know that Butler disliked this book and would not allow it be reprinted, but it is a valuable addition to the Patternmaster series and the only book written by Butler to take place on a different planet. I enjoyed the story a lot and though it's not as strong as some of her other books deserves to be read. ( )
  juki2222 | Nov 15, 2012 |
This book is in the Patternist series, chronologically fourth, but has very little in common with the others. A group of humans has left Earth in an attempt to escape the Clayark disease, but have arrived on a new planet only to find themselves smack dab in the middle of alien clan wars. This is a story of how intolerance and prejudice will bring a people down while acceptance of differences can lead to strength and happiness. As always, Butler is the master of complex relationships and alien lifeforms. I thought this was a great story--not Butler's best, but definitely worth tracking down a copy, if you can. ( )
  stubbyfingers | Mar 21, 2009 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Octavia E. Butlerprimary authorall editionscalculated
Stinson, PaulCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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I didn't know enough to appreciate my foster father the way I should have when we met back on Earth.
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