Favorite OSC book?

From Alvin Maker to Wyrms
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Favorite OSC book?

Postby anonshadow » Wed Sep 27, 2006 1:34 pm

Can anything trump the Ender books? Is there any other work that you adore *gasp* more than Ender?

I say, yes. Now, I adore all the Ender books. I do. However, the Worthing Saga is definitely my favorite of all of OSC's books.

I find the themes to be more gripping than the themes of any of the Ender books, and I like the way that you see little drops in history throughout the entire thing. I also enjoy the irony in the kind of life people on somec led and the way that the book was written.



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Postby lyons24000 » Wed Sep 27, 2006 1:42 pm

Better then EG or SftD? Yah, right! There is nothing that can be better then those books...

But Pastwatch comes close.
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Postby v-girl » Wed Sep 27, 2006 1:45 pm

the homecoming series is my next favorite after the ender books. especially the first three. i think OSC does the best with character development in these (but he also had three books to do so) and that's really the best thing about OSC's writing, IMO.

my favorite stand alone book was probably pastwatch. and to be completely honest, there are some i have read that i have no recollection of the plot, like wyrms and treason. i have to reread. :)

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Postby Jayelle » Wed Sep 27, 2006 2:20 pm

I love Treason, you can really tell it's where he started developing the ideas for AlvinMaker.

But most of all, I love LOVE Enchantment.
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Postby Claire » Wed Sep 27, 2006 2:25 pm

I love Alvin Maker. But I also really love Enchantment and Pastwatch.

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Postby wizzard » Wed Sep 27, 2006 2:34 pm

Alvin Maker and Pastwatch are both amazing.

I don't know why, but something about Enchantment felt... off, to me. It just wasn't up to the same standard as his other books.
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Postby lyons24000 » Wed Sep 27, 2006 7:58 pm

I've never read Enchantment or Worthing Saga. I've seen 'em both but they never captured my attention. Now I might just have to buy them both. (I always buy, never check out)
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Postby Mahatma » Wed Sep 27, 2006 11:17 pm

I love Pastwatch, Alvin Maker series, and Enchantment, in that order. But I didn't really like the Worthing Saga -- my spiritual perspective is very different from OSC's, and I didn't like the whole pain-is-better-than-numbness theme. Also, I was 16 when I read it... maybe I'd appreciate it more now.

But nothing for me will ever trump SftD.
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Postby Blitz » Thu Sep 28, 2006 6:43 pm

I loved Pastwatch and Songmaster, and Treason is definitely up there. But the Ender books are still my favorite.
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Postby Ela » Sun Oct 01, 2006 1:17 am

My favorite OSC book of all is Speaker for the Dead.

Pastwatch was also excellent.

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Postby KennEnder » Sun Oct 01, 2006 5:19 pm

Wow, other than EG, I like a LOT of OSC books... and there are some I don't like so much too. But, in alphabetical order (because I can't decide!) my "favorites" are:

Alvin Maker
Lost Boys
Lovelock
Pastwatch
Songmaster
Treason
Treasure Box
Worthing Chronicle/Saga

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Postby pooka » Mon Oct 02, 2006 8:25 pm

I didn't understand a lot of The Worthing Saga. It still kind of escapes me, plus whenever he used a dead baby as stage dressing I was affected probably more than he meant for a reader to be. Similar to his essay about why he removed the n-word from Ender's Game. There can be dead babies, just not random anonymous dead babies thrown in for effect. I have reason to believe he wouldn't do that in his writing these days. But, yeah, I don't retain the point of "floating the stone". I would have to re-read it.

I just finished Magic Street and really enjoyed it immensely. I think as far as a stand-alone book goes, I might like it best. But nor more than the Speaker series altogether.

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Postby zeroguy » Mon Oct 02, 2006 10:10 pm

pooka wrote:It still kind of escapes me, plus whenever he used a dead baby as stage dressing I was affected probably more than he meant for a reader to be.


Err.... what?
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Postby pooka » Tue Oct 03, 2006 5:08 am

Well, there was the dead baby whose vitals had been eaten by ants in the field, and the dessicated baby corpse that blocks his parents door shut. If it weren't for those two, I'd probably accept the baby that falls off the cliff. There may be more I'm forgetting.

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Postby eriador » Wed Oct 25, 2006 1:19 pm

I haven't read Enchantment, but my favorite is by far Treason. I've only read A Planet Called Treason, which (I think) is the shorter, earlier version.

My least favorite would have to be The Folk of the Fringe, the Mormonism aspect really turned me off.

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Postby Seiryu » Tue Nov 21, 2006 9:16 pm

Treason
Lovelock
Ender's Game

Although...I've only really read the Ender's series, the first of the Homecoming series, Lovelock, and Treason. I need to read more. I have two of the Homecoming books and one Alvin Maker book as well as Past Watch.
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Postby christine » Wed Dec 20, 2006 10:56 pm

i really really really liked Treasure Box.
and Lost Boys made me cry. :(
At times I think the Alvin Maker series is extremely boring but has occasional good aspects.
but that's just me.
enchantment was cute too :).

i dont think anything tops the enderverse though.

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Postby Seiryu » Thu Dec 21, 2006 6:33 am

I'm reading Treasure Box now. I'll say one thing for it: it's pretty good at keeping my attention.

Edit: Treasure Box is definitely one of his better ones. :D
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Postby luminousnerd » Wed Dec 27, 2006 1:13 am

The Homecoming series is a very, very good series. The second and third of which are the best. It's difficult to compare these with Ender's Game, since even though they are bough sci-fi, Homecoming has a whole lot of Fantasy Elements, I think.

But one thing I can say with certainty is that Orson Scott Card is brilliant.

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Lost Boys

Postby Sibyl » Wed Dec 27, 2006 8:50 am

I just finished "Lost Boys" on Christmas Day, by pure coincidence. I had no idea that the last big scene would be on Christmas Eve, and the book's been kicking around the house for a while--the cover and blurbs gave me the idea that it would be imiatation Stephen King, and I detest SK: I wouldn't have had this one at all except that it was the only OSC that I hadn't read one day when I was cruising Hastings, and then with that impression, there were always other things that I'd rather read. Well, I was wrong, and I should have known better. It's a fine, fine, powerful, beautiful book about marriage and family, and besides the rest of it, I learned more about Mormons as they are inside their culture, and there were things that are perfectly applicable to Church People and internal "politics" of any church I've been in.

I can't say that one or the other is my favorite, but this one surely comes close.
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Postby Sibyl » Thu Feb 01, 2007 12:29 pm

Every time I finish an OSC book, that one's my favorite--until I've finished another one.

This time, it's "Treason". I didn't even like it much as I was reading, and it took quite a while, because when I'd get up to go do something else, I had no powerful urge to go back to it, but the end is so satisfying that it washes back over the middle and beginning. I'll have to reread very soon, to see whether knowing the end creates that powerful urge, or what.

I have to make exceptions on the Ender/Shadow serieses, though. In the case of those, only one of the volumes is a complete book in itself, it seems to me, that is, "Ender's Game". The Speaker series isn't complete without EG, either, and the Shadow series is all one (though lacking a satisfying end) -- I think it _might_ be complete without having read EG, I'm not sure. As a whole Series, though, each of those shares the "favoriteness". Probably the same goes for Alvin Maker, but I'm not unsatisfied with it.

It can't be that the man gets better and better, because I'm not reading the books in the order he wrote them, so it's got to be me somehow.
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Postby Sibyl » Tue Feb 06, 2007 11:27 am

pooka wrote:I didn't understand a lot of The Worthing Saga. It still kind of escapes me, plus whenever he used a dead baby as stage dressing I was affected probably more than he meant for a reader to be. Similar to his essay about why he removed the n-word from Ender's Game. There can be dead babies, just not random anonymous dead babies thrown in for effect. I have reason to believe he wouldn't do that in his writing these days. But, yeah, I don't retain the point of "floating the stone". I would have to re-read it.

I just finished Magic Street and really enjoyed it immensely. I think as far as a stand-alone book goes, I might like it best. But nor more than the Speaker series altogether.


I haven't read Worthing yet, but the body of work of his that I _have_ read is positively _littered_ with dead babies: but they're always _important_ (so far). I'm willing to lay a bet that you just didn't see the symbolic point in any you regarded as "just stage dressing": I'll settle it for myself when I do get to Worthing.

I don't think he uses dead babies casually: I strongly suspect that he writes them from his own pain of his lost children, and anointing of his scar tissue.

Way back when I was writing papers in college English classes, and interested in psychology and psychoanalysis, I discovered that it was an easy A to pseudopsychoanalyze writers, as long as it was also done with good grammar and spelling, which came naturally to me (no spellcheck in those days, and even now I have a good eye for other people's errors in homonyms, which spellcheck passes, as long as they're real words, and their overdependance on computers). Even then, I was cynical about it, and more so when I read CS Lewis' remarks about how mistaken such critics usually were when writing about living writers--how much safer they were by waiting until the writers were dead and couldn't contradict them. Nonetheless, it's still tempting.

Every parent I've known in the Real World who's lost one or more children, whether in the child's first day of life or in their adulthood, has been deeply scarred by the loss, and it's colored the remainder of their lives. My grandmother, who gave birth to eleven, was very proud of having raised all of them to adulthood, and still scarred and mourned for the rest of her own life the boys who died after her responsibility for them was past. Even though I've had and raised only one, and she's a mother now herself, her death (I even have trouble writing that as a hypothetical) is still my nightmare. I'm much more afraid of hers than of my own.

Getting back to the topic, I did just finish "Homebody", and I don't think that it's a spoiler to say that it's centered around a dead child, who dies before the start of the novel, but whose memory is the center of her father's life, or what's left of it.
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Postby wigginboy » Wed Feb 07, 2007 12:36 pm

I characterize 'favourites' as books that I can read over and over again and feel like its a new and amazing book everytime. I feel this way with many of OSC's books, but the few that really stick out to me are Ender's Game (of course), Pastwatch (which im currently re-reading for the fourth time) and Treason. These books just struck me as being amazing, both the ideas presented and the way they are presented. Card has a distinct writing style and these books, I feel, exhibit that style and illustrate exactly the message Card wants to project.


EDIT:
I picked up The Worthing Saga a few days ago and im about halfway through. this book, despite being not all the way read yet, has officially made my favourites list. i love the shifts in time, the characterization, the language, the references to religion. this is a hell of a book, wild with imagery and written expertly to tell a fascinating story. i cant wait to finish it, im always wondering what new shift the story is going to make, and where it will lead.

more on this once i am done

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my faves

Postby turidoth » Wed Jan 02, 2008 11:06 pm

in order:

Ender's game
Homecoming series
Pastwatch
Shadow series

I felt SofD, Xenocide and CotM were too long... Wyrms didn't make much sense to me

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Postby Darth Petra » Thu Jan 03, 2008 8:35 am

Ender's Game is the best! But The Worthing Saga comes close to being bester.
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Postby CreoleBeanFan » Fri Jun 27, 2008 10:04 am

Ela wrote:My favorite OSC book of all is Speaker for the Dead.

Pastwatch was also excellent.


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And then all the rest. I really enjoyed the Worthing Saga. I liked Enchantment, and Pandoro's box scared the Bejeezus out of me (I enjoyed it).

I've only read the first of the Alvin Maker series, and I attempted Homecoming when I was a teenager, but didn't get very far into it.

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Postby Jayelle » Fri Jun 27, 2008 10:59 am

Pandoro's box scared the Bejeezus out of me (I enjoyed it).


Do you mean Treasure Box?
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Postby wigginboy » Sat Jun 28, 2008 5:21 pm

After I finished Worthing Saga, like it wasn't really complete. Maybe that's because it is just a collection of stories and we only see small glimpses of a long history. I did enjoy the characters and the writing style of each of the sections flowed well with each of the others. the parallels to Mormon theology are apparent but not obvious to the untrained eye.

that said, I would have to count Worthing among my favourites. If had to choose three top favourites, from the bottom up they would be: Lost Boys (3), Xenocide(2) Treason(1).

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Postby zeroguy » Sun Jun 29, 2008 1:47 am

wigginboy wrote:If had to choose three top favourites, from the bottom up they would be: Lost Boys (3), Xenocide(2) Treason(1).


Yay, another Xenocide fan! It often seems like we are few in number, around here.

I could never see myself putting Treason near that high, though, in my own hypothetical list. You'll be on your own there...
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Postby LilBee91 » Sun Jun 29, 2008 2:21 am

zeroguy wrote:Yay, another Xenocide fan! It often seems like we are few in number, around here.


http://xkcd.com/304/

It's been linked before, but I couldn't resist.

I actually love Xenocide. It was my favorite for a while. Then I realized that I could not stand Qing-Jao, which kind of killed it (i.e. dropped it to the bottom of the Ender series, but still above almost anything else I've read). There are some characters I love to hate, but she just isn't one of them.

That being said, CotM and EG are probably tied for my favorite OSC book. I love the Shadow series (kill me later), and I thought Alvin Maker was pretty good, but I think Ender wins. Other than that I've only read Enchantment, which was a good read, but I don't think I'll give up my precious bookshelf space for it.
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Postby Luet » Sun Jun 29, 2008 7:46 am

I guess I never replied to this, hmm.

Pastwatch, Worthing Saga and maybe Songmaster. Those would be my top 3 non-Ender books. I really like the first three Homecoming but the last two kind of ruin it. As far as the Ender books go, I love SftD and Xeno both immensely and on a much different level than I do EG. CotM was more...meh.
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Postby Eddie Pinz » Mon Jun 30, 2008 9:26 pm

I have only read three other OSC books. The ranking of them would be:
Enchantment
Worthing Saga
Pastwatch

I enjoyed Enchantment much more than I thought I would and Pastwatch less than the thought I would. Things just worked out too perfectly in Pastwatch. I started to get confused in the Worthing Saga with all of the stories, trying to remember who was who and all that. I definitely need to reread it. I don't think any of these would rank above the Ender books though.

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Postby Luet » Tue Jul 01, 2008 7:41 am

Worthing Saga is one that definitely needs multiple reads to make sense. When I finished reading it the first time, I felt like I had forgotten the beginning by the time I got to the end. I've probably read it 4-5 times now and I feel like I get something more out of it each time.
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Postby OrsonScottCardFan » Fri Jul 18, 2008 6:50 am

My Favorites would have to be:
Ender's Game
Enchantment
Treasure Box
Homebody
Speaker for the Dead















The only book that I don't really like is The Folk of the Fringe.

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Postby Astrum » Wed Dec 17, 2008 4:37 pm

I'm undecided. Either The Call of Earth or Speaker for the Dead.
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