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Book review: Shadow of the Giant by Orson Scott Card

Shadow of the Giant (Shadow Series, #4)Shadow of the Giant by Orson Scott Card

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Now that I've completed the Shadow Series, I can say that I enjoyed the Ender's Game series (AKA Ender's Saga) much more. In the Shadow Series, and in this book in particular, the story isn't as engaging, and I didn't care much about the main or peripheral characters.

This book concludes the political maneuvering and military clashes that take place on Earth after the Battle School kids return. I found the endless narration of distant, impersonal politics and skirmishes boring; I would have preferred more time devoted to showing the Battle School grads in action, closer up.

Colonel Graff and Mazer Rackham have an insightful conversation with Peter in chapter 20. Here's an excerpt:
"We want you to win so that the human race can stop spending its vast surpluses on ways to kill each other, and can instead send all the people that would have been killed in war out into space. Aned all the money that would have been spent on weapons can be spent on colony ships, and on trading ships, eventually. The human race has always produced a vast surplus of human beings and of wealth, and it has used up almost all of it either on stupid monuments like the pyramids or on brutal, bloody, pointless wars. We want you to unite the world so that this waste can finally stop."

It's much easier to sympathize with the Peter of this series than the Peter presented in Ender's Saga; he's practically a different person, and much more likable. The end of this book ties into Ender's Saga; Peter finally speaks to Valentine and Ender, and you learn about the writing of The Hive Queen and The Hegemon.

If you liked Ender's Game and Ender's series, then you'll probably like this book and the rest of the Shadow Series. Just don't expect the same level of storytelling as you're used to in Ender's Saga.

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