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Orson Scott Card (né et vivant aux Etats-Unis) est l'un des aute urs de science-fiction (la série Ender), de fantasy (les chroniques d'Alvin le faiseur) et de romans historiques les plus connus, lus et estimés dans le monde. Il a remporté le prix Hugo et le prix Nébula deux années consécutives, pour La Stratégie Ender et sa suite, La voix des morts, exploit sans précédent.
Jusqu'à décembre en tout cas, où sort Ender's Shadow... La série Ender nous captive dès ses premiers mots, pour nous emmener de surprises en rebondissements, au coeur d'une saga remplie de personnages fouillés, sur un fond travaillé de théologie et surtout d'éthique. Card maîtrise son sujet et ne verse jamais dans la banalité, alors qu'il nous amène sans cesse à nous interroger sur de hautes questions, tandis qu'incapables de quitter son univers, on dévore, page après page, avide, l'histoire qu'il nous raconte avec tant de talent. Après Xenocide, Card tient, encore une fois, toutes ces promesses et même plus.
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74 internautes sur 79 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
I Hated This Book So Much I Couldn't Give It 1 Star3 août 2008
Danielle L. Petty
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About halfway through "Children of the Mind" I realized that I hated it. With a passion. Anything that evokes so much passion can't be worthless. That's why I'm giving it 3 stars. If you loved the first three books as much as I did, you may similarly feel a strong emotion when you read this one. It's not exactly boring. I just felt like I was in another universe trying to understand what in the world Card was doing.
Why do I hate it so much? Because the characters are all varying degrees of unsympathetic, and all of the major action surrounds Card's weird new mysticism, rather than the intense ethical dilemmas of the previous books. This book is like the opposite of the other books and I couldn't understand why. No one is rational, no one is wise, no one has any empathy at all. The spirit of Ender Wiggin doesn't exist in this book.
No, Ender isn't really present in this book. Card would like you to believe that he is, in the form of Peter and Valentine, Ender's "children of the mind", but I found those characters frustrating and unbelievable and not at all like any side of Ender. Interestingly, they could be viable characters on their own, but Card insists on treating them as if they are not real people and we should not care what happens to them (especially Young Valentine who is subjected to extreme emotional torture but we're not supposed to care about her feelings, she's just an "empty vessel").
No strong characters rise up to replace the absence of Ender. Card tries, with Miro (who becomes loathsome in my opinion)and Peter (all the fun sociopathy drained out of him). With the exception of Wang-Mu, all of the female characters come off looking really bad. You'll wonder why Ender married Novinha, as awful, self-centered and destructive as she is. You'll wonder why you didn't realize (Old) Valentine was such a self-righteous prig before. You'll wonder when Jane became so extraordinarily selfish and annoying.
Far too much time is spent on the planet Pacifica, a planet apparently inhabited by self-righteous and rude religious nuts. The chief one being a holy man who doesn't "believe in ceremony" yet insists any roof he eats under be burned because he is oh so holy. And did I tell you that we are supposed to love these Pacifican nuts? That they are supposedly so wise and above everyone else that main characters are reduced to tears and supplication?
If you want to know how the situation with the Lusitanian fleet is resolved and what happens to Ender and the gang, then go ahead and read this book. I thought everything that happened was backwards and wrong but hey, that's just me.
148 internautes sur 163 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
More an "epilogue" than a fourth book in this classic series24 août 2003
D. Cloyce Smith
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Having read and loved the first three books in the Ender series, there was no way I was going to miss this entry. Like so many others, though, I am of split mind about the finale (and how appropriate, given the schizophrenic existence of its lead characters Ender-Peter and Val-Jane). While "Children of the Mind" does contain Card's trademark wit and while the last 100 pages kick into high gear, the final installment, on its own, is as unsatisfying as it is pleasing. One of the major problems is Card's ill-considered decision to publish "Xenocide" and "Children of the Mind" as two books rather than one cohesive unit; the fourth entry seems more an epilogue to the series--a 350-page denouement--than the climax it should have been. Card admits he originally planned the two books as one work, and this admission resonates like an apology. Well over a third of "Children of the Mind" summarizes what happened in previous volumes, and another third is riddled with endless conversations on political and metaphysical topics, many of which the characters already debated at length in "Xenocide." Only in the last 100 pages does Card finally abandon the themes that were presented more thoroughly (and competently) in the earlier books and turn his attention to resolving the many loose ends. In sum, Card would have been much wiser to have written a unified 600-page book rather than 900 needlessly repetitive pages. The second problem is that Card's philosophical ruminations often steer awfully close to quasi-religious mumbo-jumbo. The entire section set on Pacifica, a planet governed by Samoans, feels particularly incongruous. (Peter and Wang-mu wonder aloud--twice--what they are doing on this particular world, a question that is never really fully addressed.) True--some of the philosophical questions are fascinating, but there's very little that wasn't already said better and more succinctly in "Xenocide," and the dialogue is often excruciatingly shallow. Take this conversation between Valentine and Novinha, which reads in part: "You didn't really need him anymore." "He never needed me." "He needed you desperately," said Valentine. "He needed you so much he gave up Jane for you." "No," said Novinha, "He needed my need for him. He needed to feel like he was providing for me, protecting me." "But you don't need his providence or his protection anymore." I wish I could tell you this bit of dizzying dialogue is an exception, but there are similar angst-ridden conversations between Miro and Val, Peter and Wang-mu--in short, between any two characters who feel the need to explain to each other their raison d'etre. In the earlier books, Card allowed metaphysical questions to arise as much from the actions of the characters and the development of the plot as from the dialogue; in "Children of the Mind," everyone seems to be in post-Freudian interplanetary counseling. Yet the book is not a wholesale disaster; and I particularly enjoyed the page-turning final resolution, even though it relies on a melodramatic sleight of hand. If the last third of "Children of the Mind" were merged with a pared-down version of "Xenocide," the whole would probably have been equal to the excellence of the first two books in the Ender series.
28 internautes sur 30 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
Epitomizes the law of diminishing returns.24 juillet 1998
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Talk about pretentious -- in the afterword to Children of the Mind, Orson Scott Card compares himself to Nobel Prize winning author Kenzaburo Oe. And that really illustrates the problems not only with this latest novel, but the problem of the Ender series, in general. Card is so taken with moral and character dilemmas that he gives short shrift to the actual plot of the story. It might be acceptable if Card had the craft and skill of good "mainstream" author, but he is so heavy-handed that his attempts at literary depth are embarassing. Ender's Game was a great novel because Card did a magnificent job of compression; the result was a taut, gripping and moving story. Speaker For The Dead was a very good novel because the main plot involving the mystery of piggy culture and biology was strong enough to carry the reader past the bland soap opera of the Portugese biologist's family. But the third novel, Xenocide, completely collapsed under its weight, and C! hildren of the Mind -- after starting with what is admittedly a touching scene with Ender and his wife in the monastery -- dissolves into a mess. Any interesting plot flow that might have moved the book forward stops dead every time -- and there are many of them -- Mr. Card yields to his didactic side and inserts a boring, almost expository, conversation about the meaning of reality. Mr. Card also continues another unfortunate trend that began in Speaker For the Dead, as he again speculates on how different ethnic cultures might handle space colonization. No doubt the author is exploring his own well-intentioned curiosity about other people, but his literary clumsiness again betrays him and the results are parodies, such as Japanese wisemen spouting Lotus wisdom and Pacific Islanders who have the wherewithal for space travel but still row on bamboo craft to speak to primitive prophets. It's as annoying as the Catholic Portugese stereotypes that populated Speaker and as insul! ting as Xenocide's Chinese Geniuses-Who-Speak-Like-Confuciu! s. Children of the Mind tries to give us a cliffhanger ending with an interesting mystery to be explored, but although the sci-fi concept itself does have its intrigue, I just can't take any more of these characters.
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Should never have been written4 novembre 2003
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I highly recommend NOT reading this book, which managed to diminish the magic of Ender's Game for me. Stop at Xenocide, which was pretty good, and skip straight to Ender's Shadow, which is VERY good. This book is exceedingly disjointed, makes way too much of the Valentine/Peter dichotomy, and is boring, boring, boring. Where I couldn't put the other Ender books down, I had to really struggle to finish this one. And then wished I hadn't.
27 internautes sur 31 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
Only for those in absolute need of resolution16 novembre 2004
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I never thought I would say this about a book in this series, but I hate this book. I was absolutely disappointed with the way Card chose to resolve his story. I'll give him license since he may do what he will with his story, but I feel so bitter about this ending to such a magnificent saga that I can't recommend this to anybody that isn't dying of curiousity at the end of "Xenocide".
And to those who believe you fit in this category, I'm sorry for the feelings you will like possess upon completion. I honestly feel the same unrest now as I did when I finished "Xenocide". I hope everyday that Card will come to his senses and revise his plot here to be more logical, less rushed, more conclusive (which some may argue with), and more fulfilling to a character of such quality as Ender Wiggin.