©2008 Orson Scott Card; (P)2008 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
Card shows here that he has continued to hone his writing skills long after success first claimed him. While there are bits and pieces in the text that remind one strongly of the Alvin Maker series, the context is unique enough that it does not feel rehashed or redundant.
The story moves quickly and does not mire the reader in details. It is a light read, yet still manages to develop a couple of characters well enough to be engaging.
I was concerned as I neared the end of this book that the dangling loose ends would be left that way, given the small amount of time remaining to tie them. I was happily surprised to find that, while the resolution was brief, it was also comprehensive and did not feel hurried.
The narrator is expressive and pleasant to listen to. I only wish all of my money here on Audible was as well spent as on this book.
Two great passions - dogs and books! Sci-fi/fantasy novels are my go-to favorites, but I love good writing across all genres.
Although Stonefather was originally published before the Mithermages series began to give readers a taste of that new series, I did not pick up Stonefather until after I had read both books 1 & 2 of the Mithermages. No matter, Stonefather is a totally stand alone story set in the Mithermages land of Westil and I recommend it without hesitation to anyone who enjoys a good fairy tale/allegory whether or not you read the series. This is Orson Scott Card at his finest; not so much a standard coming-of-age story (no sexual angst in this), but more a tale of finding your identity and being true to your own soul. I was surprised at how effortlessly Card was able to map out the basics of the magical system of the Mithermages in this one short book so that the listener quickly connects with the plot and the characters. The prose is beautiful and the character development surprisingly detailed considering the short length of the story. This is a really well-done blend of standard fairy tale tropes with an interesting magical system and concludes with a great moral and a very satisfying ending.
Orson Scott Card's daughter, Emily Janice Card, narrates Stonefather beautifully. I don't know if Ms. Card has the ability to narrate across genres since I've never heard her before, but her voice is a great match for this magical story.
When I drive, I read... uhm listen. I like SciFi, Fantasy, some Detective and Espionage novels and Religion. Now and then I will also listen to something else.
Stonefather and Sandmagic are two short stories of Orson Scott Card set in the same world as his new book "The Lost Gate." In Stonefather we meet a boy, called Runnel, who was the family misfit, frequently beaten by his father, just because of his proud face. Card plays with opposites, irony and gullibility to weave a very strong story around Runnel.
I thoroughly enjoyed this story. Emily Janice Card does justice to it in her narration.
My taste differs from kid books to gory horror books.
Card is my favorite writer and with the exception of Ender's Game, I love him best when he is writing fantasy like this. This reminds me of Seventh Son and A Planet Called Treason (rewritten as Treason). This makes me want to go out and lay on stones. Card makes me believe I can meld into them.
Card junior is a perfect narrator for this.
A lover of Classics, humorous literature, bizarre fantasy and crazed crime and Sci-fi.
When talking about Orson Scott Card, many think of his highly successful Science Fiction novels. This book is an excellent starting point to Card's new series of Fantasy books involving the magic practitioners he names the Mithermages. The Mithermages find their power through loving and serving the elements of the world that they feel an affinity with, allowing them to control the forces of nature and help the world become what it wants to be.
Card has provided a tantalising new world and yet another form of magic.
Overall this story is an excellent novel for young adults upwards and has an excellent and tantalising flow that keeps interest and hardly makes you want to stop listening.
Emily Janice Card delivers a great performance that made listening easy. The story was predictable, but still enjoyable. It lives you wanting more of this kind of work from Orson Scott Card!
A nice, simple fairy tale. Predictable but enjoyable, like an old comfortable pair of jammies. The narration is a good fit for the style of writing.
a bit slow
think it would have been better to read your imagination might have given characters a difference
I'm the managing editor of the Fantasy Literature blog. Life's too short to read bad books!
Originally posted at Fantasy Literature.
Runnel isn???t appreciated by his family or his little village. His father abuses him, his siblings taunt him, and even his mother doesn???t seem overly fond. So one day he walks to the edge of his village and just keeps going. He???s never been outside of his village before, so everything is new. Eventually he comes to a city whose walls and bridges are crumbling. He???s told that this is the city of the water mages, the magicians who cast out the stone mages that built the beautiful city. After the mage war, the victorious water mages will only allow one stone mage in the town. He lives in a grand house and is treated with respect, but he is spied upon and mistrusted because if he ever brings his colleagues back into the city, the water mages fear that they???ll lose their ruling positions.
After meeting a friendly girl at the city???s well, Runnel follows her home and finds employment in the home of the stone mage. There he learns about the history and politics of this strange city, and he learns a lot about himself, too. It seems that Runnel may have an affinity for stone.
Stonefather is a novella that introduces Orson Scott Card???s MITHER MAGES series, which is aimed at young adults. As I???ve come to expect from Card, this story is beautifully written and contains deep and likable characters, a well-developed world with interesting magic, and an intriguing setting. This is a simpler, lighter and more relaxed read, though, than Card???s ENDER series, which was full of drama, tension and, best of all, lots of ideas. Stonefather doesn???t reach that level ??? it???s mostly a pleasant coming-of-age story ??? but it did occur to me that the mage war may be an allegory for the Christian and Muslim conflict in Jerusalem. I have no idea if this is Orson Scott Card???s intention, though.
As far as YA fiction goes, this is a good choice for a reader looking for a lovely low-stress read. In many ways it???s similar to the YA fantasy of Ursula K. Le Guin and Shannon Hale. I think Stonefather bodes well for the MITHER MAGES series and I will likely give the first novel, The Lost Gate, a try.
Stonefather has been published by Subterranean Press. The cover art, by Tom Kidd (one of my favorites) is stunning. I read the book in audio format (published by Blackstone Audio). It???s narrated by Janice Card, Orson Scott Card???s daughter. She does a terrific job with Stonefather. The gorgeous cover art is viewable when you download the audio version with an Audible app.
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