Ursula K. Le Guin's haunting epic of survival, selfdiscovery, and hope is third in a sequence that begins with her PEN Award-winning Gifts.
Listen to Gifts.
©2007 Ursula K. Le Guin; (P)2007 Recorded Books
"Powers has been published as a young adult novel, but reviewers agree that anyone will enjoy Le Guin's complex characters, fascinating worlds, and explorations of power and learning." (Bookmarks magazine)
I listen to books when I'm at work or doing chores. I prefer history and fantasy. My favorite audio book is Going Postal by Terry Pratchett.
This book is so interesting that I can barely find words to summarize it. It defies summation. It convinced me that Ursula K Le Gun truly deserves all the critical praise and adulation. Each of the previous two books in this trilogy had a crucial flaw. In this volume, Le Guin manages to combine the best aspects of Gifts and Voices and leave out all the problems.
Don't go into this book expecting high fantasy adventure or magnificent displays of magical might. This is a book that explores the idea of freedom and self agency (of personal power). It doesn't lecture you. It simply uses every word of its story to reinforce a central idea: if everyone in a society isn't free then no one is truly free.
I had never heard of this series and thought I'd take a chance on them because of the author. These are well written, thoughtful books that really deserve as much attention as her other works. Each audio reader does a good job. Each book could stand on its own, too. The stories are complex (I mean that in a good way - as in, not simplistic). It's just good literature. (...hence the Nebula award.) She respects the intelligence of the reader/listener and the maturity of her characters' thoughts and actions reflects that.
I really enjoyed Le Guin's Earthsea trilogy, so for those of you looking to compare them, this has a less dark theme and these are more about the people than about the magic - if that matters to you. As I listened to all three books, I found myself thinking, "These are really good books!" as I got into each. And they stayed good right to the ending of each. They really deserve just as much attention as other bestsellers in the field.
I focus on fiction, sci-fi, fantasy, science, history, politics and read a lot. I try to review everything I read.
Virtually NOTHING happens the first half of the book...then very very little happens. There is minimal character development, but not enough to make this even close to worth the time. Maybe it is leading up to something in book seven. Ursula Le Guin has written amazing books - but this is not one of those. Still the prose are fine.
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