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Shadow's End by Sheri S. Tepper
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Shadow's End

by Sheri S. Tepper

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One hundred years before the story starts something wiped out human life on colonised planets in a certain sector of space, only Dinadh was spared. Now this is happening again and Lutha Tallstaff is sent to this planet where there might be answers. On the planet Dinadh Saluez is about to undergo a ceremony that all women take at the time of their first pregnancy and on Earth (now Alliance) Snark is a shadow, a person who has been unable to fit in with society. Ultimately the paths of these three women will meet.

Not my favourite Tepper but still a good read. Some of her usual themes of population growth; an ecological message and an interesting plot and good female characters. Unfortunately, as usual, most of her male characters are not very appealing or sympathetic though in this one at least I ended up liking the King, Jiacare.

Tepper is an author I keep returning to. She is not the most subtle of authors but I know what I am getting when I open one of her books and I like her story telling. ( )
3 vote calm | Feb 22, 2012 |
Tepper's novel follows the stories of three women: Saluez of Dinadh, Snark the Shadow, and the above-mentioned Lutha Tallstaff. The three disparate women have one thing in common: victimhood.

Saluez is a victim of Dinadh's social structure and religious practices which often have tragic consequences for women. Snark, because of her anti-social tendencies, has been sentenced to a form of behavior control known as Shadowhood, in which she acts as servant to the mighty but is completely unnoticeable by those she serves. And Lutha -- strong, intelligent, capable Lutha -- is victimized by her own longing for Leelson Famber even in the face of utter rejection by both him and his family.

Lutha's mission sets her on a path which ultimately unites these women and brings them to a single destiny. Together their actions will determine their own fates and that of mankind. Along the way, Tepper paints us a vivid landscape of alien worlds and odd beings, strange politics and xenophobic religions, and she shows us the far-reaching consequences of seemingly minor acts.

A well-told, almost poetic novel. ( )
  avanta7 | Apr 22, 2009 |
This book was a very strange mixture of women's rights, the environment, and religion. What would we sacrafice for the chance to live forever? Who would we sacrafice? Should we even try? What does that mean for our planet? These are a few of the questions that arise in this slightly disturbing story. The strange thing about this book is that the problems are not resolved all the way even after the questions are answered. ( )
  the1butterfly | Jul 29, 2007 |
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One man's struggle against a strange force causing mass deaths on planets in space. The setting is a planet where men worship a terrifying god. A look at man's place in the universe by the author of Beauty.

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