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Author Topic: Shawdow of the Giant
Kacie_lala33
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If it isn't obvious. I am reading Shadow of the giant right now. I just picked it up and I knew when I picked it up I had these two voices on my shoulders...

One was saying,"After you read this it wil be over! No more shadow series and Bean will be dead!so don't read it.."

The other was telling me "Youve come this far. You love it, and you HAVE to read this book."

So of course I am reading it now and well I am going to be honest and say it is really PEELING me off. I am so angry at it. I can not tell if its because its almost over or if it is something else. Possibly the fact that Bean has decided to leave Petra with his kids?

Now that I have rambled enough, did anyone else struggle with this book?

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Soara
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It's not the last of Bean. There's going to be one more book. With that in mind, I've withheld my annoyance. I was expecting something very important to happen that didn't...
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TomDavidson
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There's going to be one more book, but I don't think Bean is supposed to be in it; if he appears, it will only be to die "on-camera."
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formic rising
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i think OSC has said that bean will only be in a prologue briefly saying how he had died.
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RunningBear
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It made me sad.

thats all.

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0range7Penguin
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Well no character can live for ever and I felt that Bean's step offscreen was well played and touching. The end really gets you. (I am trying to say my point without giving spoilers)
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formic rising
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heh.. i suppose i didnt think about spoilers.. sorry if i did spoil anything people!
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pooka
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It's not really a spoiler until it's actually been written. Until then, it's speculation. I believe Bean was supposed to die at the end of each of the Shadow sequels.
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DDDaysh
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I don't know... I found it VERY difficult to force Petra and Bean apart, I cried ALOT in that book.
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Mark
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You'll love the last chapter.

And to be honest, I thought it was great cover to cover.

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Kacie_lala33
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Right now I am taking breaks between reading so that I don' cry TOO much.
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Kacie_lala33
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Well, I just finished it.

Mark, you were right. I DID love the last chapter. I think that the book was amazing all together.

I think that the reason why I was so angry is because I didn't want Petra to be alone and it didn't seem fair.

I am also extremely afraid of death so I had a hard time getting through with this book knowing that there was death in it. But I loved it altogether.

Now I can't wait until the next one comes out. [Big Grin]

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Blayne Bradley
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SHADOW not SHAWDOW eeee. =p
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endersdragon
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I hated the fact that they never really talked about his brother in that book, or Puppets either for that matter.

And Kacie I am the same way, I will rarely read a book anymore if it is not in a series and when the series ends I get a bit depressed even if it doesn't end in death.

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airmanfour
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I love the Shadow Series, but I'm getting concerned about it ending. It has to eventually....right?
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Kacie_lala33
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I am suppose to be reading a Non-Fiction book for AP LANG right now.

You know how after you go through a hard break up you just have to take a break for a while?

Thats what I am going through right now. A reading "break"

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Christine
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I just finished reading "Shadow of the Giant" today and I'm still trying to put together how I feel about it. In a way, it must have been good because I feel very sad for the characters. If they hadn't touched me in at least some way, that wouldn't be possible. Even though Petra lived a long life with Peter, I felt sad for the two of them as if something had been missing from both their lives -- especially Petra's. I also felt bad for Bean, who disappeared and left me feeling hollow. I expected this to be the last story and yet it is clearly not over. A new arch-nemesis was launched into space that has to be dealt with.

That said, there are a few things about this book that are gnawing at me. For one thing, it was a very choppy book, jumping around in time and place and, IMHO, leaving out bits of the stories it was telling. I don't know that I can really say what this book was ABOUT. There was no central character or struggle, unless the whole world is a character and world peace is a struggle, but even in that I felt as if there were holes in the story. A lot of the novel was told in big chunks rather than shown and I had trouble feeling close to the character that we spent the most time with. When things happened, they seemed to happen suddenly and without any real chance for me to understand why or how they happened.

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CaraCarioca
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First posting after many years not reading Hatrack... hello there!

I'm two thirds into this book and although it's been fun (as it always to read Card's books), two things have bothered me.

The first one is minor, very minor. Last time I posted anything on Hatrack (years ago, under a different alias), I commented on the need to have someone proofread his text every time he writes in a foreign language. Speaker for the Dead and Xenocide are loaded with Portuguese that is either grammatically or idiomatically wrong, or both. Some of the sentences I found there made my hair stand up. Card was very nice to explain why these things happen and in the end I felt sorry to have given him a hard time. Reading this latest book in the Shadow series, I stumbled upon more Portuguese. It was sad to see that it is even more de-volved than what I found in earlier books. Pardon me getting on first name basis here (it's out of affection): Orson, I volunteer to be your proofreader for Portuguese every time you need it!!! I'm a native Brazilian and I think I can be of really good help.

The second idiosyncrasy I spotted, the one that really made me sad, came from the colors in which Islam is painted in the story. There are some very strong remarks about the nature of Islam that Card should have been sensitive enough to avoid. It is sad to see that one of my favorite authors can sponsor a point of view so narrow minded as to accuse an entire religion of the sins of which only some of factions are guilty. It is true that some authors will take their books to be a pulpit from which to spit out their ideology, but please. The world is already in a pitiful state of affairs due to hatred inspired by racial, religious, and sexual preconceptions.

Card, do you really want to add your kindling to this raging fire?

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Scott R
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quote:
Pardon me getting on first name basis here (it's out of affection): Orson, I volunteer to be your proofreader for Portuguese every time you need it!
:snicker:

She said "Orson."

quote:
There are some very strong remarks about the nature of Islam that Card should have been sensitive enough to avoid
Hmm... why? That is, sensitivity to the topic may not have been OSC's goal at all; nor should it have been, necessarily.

quote:
The world is already in a pitiful state of affairs due to hatred inspired by racial, religious, and sexual preconceptions.
Specifically, what segments did you think were in error?
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pooka
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You might try finishing the book before making a judgement.
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DDDaysh
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I think it's pretty clear that it is a work of fiction. Getting upset over generalizations in a work of fiction set in the future is silly, because, who knows, by then the gneralizations might be true.
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CaraCarioca
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quote:
Originally posted by pooka:
You might try finishing the book before making a judgement.

You have a point, pooka. What I expressed was not so much as judgment, but my opinion based on the context of what I had read. There might be something later in the book that I find will redeems the parts which I found lacked the appropriate sensitivity. I really hope there is.
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mr_porteiro_head
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Hello, guy from Rio (am I remembering that right, or is cara feminine? It's been too long for me as well as for OSC), welcome (again) to HR.

Let me point your attention to this thread where somebody came in and railed against the first half of Magic Street and then had to eat her words when she finished the book and realized that her complaints were unfounded.

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Scott R
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There's that word again: sensitivity.

It's not a writer's job to be sensitive, exactly.

It's important that a writer tell the truth, whatever that might be; it's important that a writer be clear, be consistent with their characters, and be believable.

Why do you think a writer needs to be sensitive? What does it mean to be sensitive?

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CaraCarioca
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quote:
Originally posted by mr_porteiro_head:
Hello, guy from Rio (am I remembering that right, or is cara feminine?

Hey, mr_porteiro_head. Nice that you figured out what the alias means! Cara in Brazilian slang means guy, or even dude. And, by the way, congratulations also on your display of sensitivity and thanks for the welcome note. (That's right, Scott R, it's your favorite word again. Hold, on, I'll get to it in a second.) In the absence of precise knowledge, you asked before you made any assumptions.

I'm finding little time to devote to the book given the pressures at work and the busy time at home with two little kids. As I said before, I hope to eat my words, as unluckymolly did in the thread you pointed out. (Thanks, btw.)

quote:
Originally posted by Scott R:
There's that word again: sensitivity.

Scott R, I think it is everybody's job to be sensitive. I think that is particularly important of people who are in positions that guide people to form their opinions.

People who create content for the media (written televised, spoken, etc.) have a responsibility on their shoulders not to offend, not to incite bad behavior, not to add momentum to anything in motion that can damage the relationships between different communities within a society.

I agree with you that it is always important to expose the truth. However, since that concept eludes most of us without a cosmic mind, it is even more important that when we expose what we perceive is truth, we do so in a way that is productive, not destructive.

In the last four years, I have been paying attention to people who are extremely effective at introducing change in environments that pigeonhole them as adversarial. The way these people portray their thoughts (even when they are indeed antagonistic) aims to produce a seed of doubt that can be nourished to grow into self-questioning and into the search for a common ground or a productive compromise that bring about positive change. This kind of subtlety combined with repeated action seems to lead to better states of affairs. A Brazilian aphorism applies here: agua mole em pedra dura tanto bate ate' que fura; loosely, this can be translated as "water is soft, but its dripping on hard stone can eventually bore a hole". I think this means there's a good point to "softness" combined with "persistence". Many times blunt honesty accomplishes little other than ruffle someone's feathers and establish the grounds for actions that produce only negative results.

I repeat my admission that I jumped the gun by voicing my concerns on this forum before finishing the book. Two people here have given me hope that I will find that the book's ending will make this discussion a moot point (and splash egg all over my face).

With the kind of respect I've always held for Card, however, I didn't expect to find even excerpts of his writings that could come across as inflammatory or offensive. Ergo my surprise and disappointment with the passages that apply broad, negative generalizations to Islam. Given that we live in the age of sound bytes and out-of-context quotes, it must have taken a lot of courage (or temerity) to write those passages.

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Scott R
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quote:
People who create content for the media (written televised, spoken, etc.) have a responsibility on their shoulders not to offend
not to incite bad behavior, not to add momentum to anything in motion that can damage the relationships between different communities within a society.

I disagree with you almost completely.

How can a writer control how his audience interprets a certain passage? You claim (without evidence as yet) that Shadow of the Giant is prejudiced against normal Muslims; I say it isn't. You're offended; I am not.

Who is correct? Which has a higher claim on OSC's style?

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mr_porteiro_head
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Well, you and he share the same name, so that's one point for you, Scott.
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Scott R
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Yay!!

I have a point!

What do I do with it?

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rivka
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*affixes it atop Scott's head*
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Scott R
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It...tingles.

Is it supposed to tingle? How can I tell if it's working?

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rivka
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*rummages about for manual*

Tingling, hmm? *flips pages*

[Eek!]

See ya!

*flees*

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Scott R
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Oh, drat!

:looks:

It's full of stars!

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DDDaysh
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So are you a unicorn now?

Oh no! I'm being biassed against horses!

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Traceria
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quote:
Originally posted by Scott R:
quote:
People who create content for the media (written televised, spoken, etc.) have a responsibility on their shoulders not to offend
not to incite bad behavior, not to add momentum to anything in motion that can damage the relationships between different communities within a society.

I disagree with you almost completely.

How can a writer control how his audience interprets a certain passage?

You can't control how others react. Really, you can only control how YOU react. There are certainly instances when you want to be sensitive (someone holding a gun to your head might be a good time to choose your words wisely), but I don't think that the world of writing on the grand scale is a place for over sensitivity.

On a completely unrelated note, did anyone else see Petra/Peter coming long before the conclusion to Shadow of the Giant? Was that just me? There seemed to be enough love/hate between them early on when she and Bean were working with Peter to hint at that possibility.

Spring-boarding from that, I think I would have been very disatisfied with the end if Bean and kids had made a return trip. 'Happy' endings don't mean fitting endings.

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lynda
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I liked all the Shadow series books, Shadow of a
Giant was my least favorite. Every page I had so much anxiety,- is this the page that Bean dies. I didn't mind that Petra and Peter got together.(although i didn't see it coming) Bean is my favorite charater ever!!! I have never cried so much over a book,I felt as if I had lost a family member. OSC wrote an awsome story, one where I fell in love with Bean. The End of the story left me feeling empty and needing closure.
I know however OSC ends Bean's story I will always want more. So maybe all good things do have to end.I would like to have a little more communication between Petra and Bean and the kids. We will see what happens in Shadows in flight.
Did anyone notice that OSC got one of the kids name wrong in E in E.

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BlueWizard
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On the first issue of Bean impending death, I had the same reaction. I put off reading the books because I didn't think I would handle the death of such a beloved character. Then when Bean met his ultimate fate, I was left feeling empty and unsatisfied. But I suspect that is exactly how the characters in the book felt. Imagine Peta knowing Bean was gone forever, yet knowing that he was not gone. That had to be incredibly hard for her. Just as it was very hard for me. Since that moment I have longed for resolution. Bean simply can't fade away. I don't need to experience his death, but I do very much need a full and fair accounting of it.

To the issue of Islam. Sometimes it is necessary to be insensitive. Sometimes it is an author's job to project into the future and point out where the road we are currently on will lead us. OSC account of Islam was very consistent with a likely projection of the status of the world today.

It doesn't matter that he reflected all of Islam, only the part of Islam that is dominating the actions of the perceived group. Even in Christianity, it is not the rank and file Christians who dominate, it is the extremest and radicals. And on the extreme of that spectrum, there are the Christian who preach intolerance, hate, murder, death, and destruction.

So, it is not Islam that is in question, it is what is being done by some in the name of Islam and where those actions will lead that count.

In the books, we see that someone in the Middle East attacked others in the Middle East with atomic weapons, and rendered a whole section of that area uninhabitable. I believe the bomb was dropped on Mecca, so no one can ever pilgrimage there again. And we see the seeds of that planted today with Iran working on nuclear weapons. We see various generals trying to isolate and control the Caliph, and again, as they have many times, committing atrocities in the name of the Caliph and in the name of Islam.

So, how is O.S.Card being insensitive when he is projecting a very real and very likely future reality?

If Islam doesn't get the extremest under control, nuclear attack, and internal corruption are very very likely to happen. It can't be wrong if it is the truth.

steve/bluewizard

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Seatarsprayan
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I hated that Bean ditched Petra. For what? Really, for what? The only advantage to staying on Earth was to be near Petra's parents, and to possibly find the ninth child (which, of course, she failed to do).

Who picks parents over a spouse? Who picks parents over three of their children? She should have gone with Bean. Six months later, he's dead (because they never found a cure), and she returns to Earth, and it's hundreds of years later, but she's got ALL her kids, and she stayed with her husband.

All that nonsense about not wanting the normal kids "growing up on a starship" was ridiculous; the whole point was it wasn't going to be long on the ship. Bean had about 6 months, being on the ship wasn't going to change that. When he dies, return to Earth.

Card is a Mormon, and Mormons are usually big on marriage, so for this totally unnecessary divorce to occur, really bothered me.

And then for Petra to marry Peter! Peter's stupidity in "rescuing" Achilles from China and trying to use him is what caused the whole mess with the missing babies in the first place. The ninth baby missing for her whole life, and Peter's idiocy to blame, and she marries him. So many of their problems are a result of that most moronic of acts, not killing Achilles, not even putting him in prison, but actually trying to use him. What a moron, and then he gets Bean's wife while Bean is exiled.

I did love the scene with Graff (sorry, Hyrum) and Rackham and all the battle school kids. That was fun.

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neo-dragon
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Who said anything about picking parents? They had a whole discussion about wanting to let the normal children live normal lives rather than be raised on a ship. That's why Petra had to stay on Earth. She chose the best possible life for her healthy children rather than robbing them of a real childhood just so she could stay with Bean.

Yes, Bean might die in less than a year, but he didn't go into space for himself. The children with his condition would live for at least 15-20 years. Why would they come back after Bean died?

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Lostinspace
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quote:
Originally posted by Christine:
I expected this to be the last story and yet it is clearly not over.

Keep in mind that even when the last book is written it will not feel clearly over...Card tends to believe in ending his books in a true to life style..which is to say that life does not end with everything tied in a neat little bow, but rather with strings hanging out untied!
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BlackBlade
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If you're going to resurrect a thread that is several months old please at least note it in your post.
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