'The fifth and last volume in Card's sprawling Homecoming saga. More than parable, not quite allegory, Card's far-future religious saga manages, brilliantly, to be at once entertaining, unobjectionable, and edifying.' - Kirkus Reviews
'The conclusion of the story, in which the first born son of a former priest and leader sees the evil he has caused and selects his future, is vintage Card and a joy to read.' - Publishers Weekly
High above the Earth orbits the starship Basilica. On board the huge vessel is a sleeping woman. Of those who made the journey, Shedemai alone has survived the hundreds of years since the Children of Wetchik returned to Earth.
She now wears the Cloak of the Starmaster, and the Oversoul wakes her sometimes to watch over her descendants on the planet below. The population has grown rapidly - there are cities and nations now, whole peoples descended from those who followed Nafai or Elemak. But in all the long years of searching, the Oversoul has not found the thing it sought. It has not found the Keeper of Earth, the central intelligence that alone can repair the Oversoul's damaged programming.
The fifth and final volume in Card's majestic Homecoming saga.
Books by Orson Scott Card:
Alvin Maker novels
The Crystal City
Ender Wiggin Saga
Speaker for the Dead
Children of the Mind
Ender in Exile
The Memory of the Earth
The Call of the Earth
The Ships of the Earth
First Formic War (with Aaron Johnston)
This concluding volume of the Homecoming series (Earthfall, et al.) doesn't live up to the earlier books, which were notable for their subtlety in developing essentially religious themes through focused plotting and sensitive characterization. Here, the plot relies on familiar Judeo-Christian archetypes, tailored to examine discrimination, theocracy and the relationship to God-or, in this case, the powerful mystery of the Keeper. Three intelligent species now inhabit Earth: the sky people, who live in treetops; the earth people, who live in the soil and in tree trunks; and the middle people, humans descended from colonists who have returned to Earth after an absence of 40-million years. In addition to the stilted speech of some of the characters, the novel is slowed by Card's ``naming conventions,'' which increase the mystical and cultural importance of names but also force readers to refer frequently to the separate chapter on the author's system of compounded names, titles and endearments in order to determine which characters are speaking or acting. The conclusion of the story, however, in which the firstborn son of a former priest and leader sees the evil he has caused and selects his future, is vintage Card and a joy to read. This mildly disappointing wrap-up to a rich series about humanity's journey from Earth to the stars and back might be satisfying enough to Card fans, but it's not the book through which to meet Card for the first time. Author tour.
Customer ReviewsSee All
I see many parallels between this series of books and the Book of Alma, and the Book of Mormon. I liked all of the inferences, including the usage of Russian oriented names as I live in Russia, now.
This last book, Earthborn, in my opinion, is the most compelling of the 5 books and I read Book 5 every moment I had spare, as well as stealing a few moments I did NOT have spare! I really did not wish to put it down.
The quality of the coding was substantially improved over the first couple of books, which was extremely disappointing, as it deterred from the enjoymnt of the story… as though some non-native English speakers, who could not type, either, ws attempting to earn a few bucks!
None-the-less, I persevered and really delved into the spirit of the books, finally, almost guessing before I read, what SHOULD transpire according to our real history!
OSC is a very capable writer with an ability to think very laterally as well as vertically, if that makes sense. I have read most, if not all of his books and feel that this book, “Earthborn” does not deter from his writing skills in any way! I thoroughly enjoyed it and I recommend it be read, even if the first 4 are not read… but read them all, anyway!