Seventh Son (Tales of Alvin Maker, #1) by Orson Scott CardOrson Scott Card described his novel Seventh Son as an American epic fantasy, contrasting with the uncompromisingly British Tolkeinesque genre of fantasy books.
This reminded me a great deal of Larry McMurtry’s The Berrybender Narratives in its imaginative use of historic people and places to tale the story of the American Frontier in the 1840s. Card, telling a story perhaps set in the 1810-20s makes this even more interesting by slowly unraveling the American past into an alternative history fiction, remaking the American foundation into one more accessible for a fantasy writer. Agree or disagree with his politics, Card is a good writer and spins a good yarn.
What bothered me about this was the deliberate goal of forming a series rather than as a stand-alone novel. No doubt about it, I liked this book a lot, but as I came near the end it became clear that a denouement was no where in sight and I would be expected to pick up a … (gulp) sequel! Card himself in an afterward conceded that the story spun out of control and he expanded the idea of a trilogy into six, then maybe seven books.
A book should be contained between two covers. Having said that, I enjoy a good series, find distraction in an ongoing story and a seemingly endless parade of interesting characters, but winding up one chapter should not simply be a cliffhanging commercial break (pun intended) to get to the next installment.
Having said all that, I (hopeless sappy hypocrite that I am) wasted no time in reading the next book Red Prophet.
In Theaters. Coming Soon. Best of Netflix. Best of Amazon. Seventh Son