...if you like Orson Scott Card.
In Empire, Card borrows from research he'd done for other books, and some concepts/relationships, in order to preach about political radicalism.
Because he's taken on modern politics, this work isn't timeless like some of his other works are.
As others have said, this novel is full of holes, and has charicatures rather than characters.
I'd recommend skipping this one.
First Card book that i didn't fly through. The best part of the book for me was the author commentary at the conclusion. His views on the current state of US politics are spot on.
Very simplistic "black & white" portrayel of issues and the people. Far fetched to the point of nausea in almost every aspect. I enjoed author's other books and this book was a tremendous disappointment.
Possibly the worst book ever. Card's essay at the end has some good things to say, but the plot, characters etc. are overblown, unbelievable and annoying at best. The humor is embarrassing.
I think I've read almost everything Card has written and enjoyed it - I can't believe this is the same person. I listened to the whole thing because I kept thinking it would get better - after a while I realized I was only listening to it because I was angry enough to write a review.
Orson should heed Pat Sajak's axiom - paraphrased - that "Celebrities are the least qualified to comment on politics. They live in a fantasy world."
Aside from the lacking literary value of the book - long, boring political analysis sections - the epilogue is a verbose, if more eloquent restatement, of the Rodney King philosophy, "Can't we all just get along?"
Sorry Mr. Card. I purchased a novel, not a forum for your errant socio-political-religious diatribe. And yes, contrary to your belief, heartfelt or otherwise, there is absolute virtue in the world. And absolute evil. Some things are black and white.
But you do have a right to offer your opinions, but I would challenge the false pretense of the cover of a novel (with a valueless epilogue). I just wish I knew that was what Empire was about before I purchased it.
This book is scarily real. We can't imagine a civil war happening, yet Card really shows us a believable way for that to happen. This book is real good a must read for anybody, who likes fiction, and Card. This is his best book yet. Better then Ender's Game.
While his research may not hold up to the levels of Tom Clancy, his story telling is certainly more than a match and leads the other authors of the genre.
Card manages to critique the radicalism of the left and the right, without coming to judgment on their respective viewpoints, while showing the inherent endgame of radicalism on either front, Totalitarianism.
The premise is very well thought through, the characters are believable, and while my personal beliefs may conflict with the details, yes I am a Conservative, the story is well written and well read, making for a very enjoyable listen!
A must for any Card fan!
Its scrary how plausible he makes this out to be. The parallels drawn between America and Rome and why we aren't Rome is pretty interesting. Also the Red state Blue state issues were addressed well.
Its a really good book and I highly recommend it to any other Card fans.
The only thing I had a problem with is that the civil war wasn't big enough.
This story starts out great and turns into an episode of "Sliders" before you get very far. Although I will applaude Card for giving Today's Press a hard time, the story has gargantuan holes in the technical and strategic aspects. Plus you can see Mr. Card somewhere on vacation here and there noting how he will have to use this in a story somehow. It's kinda thin for modern Sci-Fi. I would have expected a more thorough continuity study before issuing this version. It's only about half done. It really could have been a better book with some more 'due dilligence.'
The premise that the country is deeply divided is a line of silliness that's been going on ever since people could say impressive things like "This country is deeply divided!" for orator effect.
True, I would rather see terrorists invade somewhere in Georgia rather than New York for fear of NY surrendering too soon.
Fun book, but low marks for a master writer.