Copyright 2013 by
Orson Scott Card and Aaron Johnston
I first read this on the 14th August 2014.
You pretty much know that anything by Orson Scott card is going to be a good story and well told.
Sometimes he creates outstanding novels like "Ender's Game" and "Speaker For the Dead".
But not all the time.
I have to admit that I grew reluctant to buy any of his more recent novels because they're good but
just not good enough, not as good as his classic works. Furthermore they always seem to be part of
some trilogy, and frankly I don't have that sort of time to spare.
So, I was down at the Maruzen bookshop in the OUZO building opposite Tokyo station. It's a pretty
big bookshop with a good selection of English language books. There were two new SF
books that caught my eye: Michael Flynn's "The January Dancer" and Orson's "Earth Unaware".
I decided to buy "The January Dancer" because I recalled his fabulous "Firestar" series.
But then I said to myself "Max, you haven't bought any books for ages, make up for it and buy both"
and did so. Darn lucky I did - I gave up on the "January Dancer" half-way through.
But boy, did I enjoy "Earth Unaware", So much so that I immediately ordered "Earth On Fire"
and "Earth Awakens" from Amazon Japan. "Earth Awakens" (the final book of the trilogy) arrived
the next day but "Earth Unaware" (book two) took two days. That was a tough time trying not
to read the books in the wrong order. Please show sympathy.
However, I was a little disappointed with myself. Firstly for not spotting early on that this was a prequel to
"Ender's Game". Not spotting it at all in fact. Secondly - as an one-time Marvel comic books fan - for
having absolutely and completed missed the Ender's Game comic book series. How can one be so out of it?
Anyway, I caught the movie "Ender's Game the day I
finished the "Earth Unaware
Back to the book. Some parts were distinctly odd. There were implausible military goings-on with a
supranational combination of SEALS and SAS with the stirring name of "MOPS". That didn't
feel exactly likely. There were some spacecraft manoeuvres that also seemed rather implausible.
Implausible is my word of the day. But forget about that right now, and those implausibilities.
The novel was pretty good. I really want to know what happens to Victor, the youthful
genius who will, I sincerely hope, be able to save the Earth. There were several other
people that I felt strongly for, but sadly Orson quickly made it very clear that it's not
a good idea to care for these characters. They die. Most every notable character in this novel
gets killed off. Quite surprisingly dead.
Orson is a hard-hearted writer. No sentimentality about keeping a character going a little
bit longer because he likes him. Nope, as soon as the plot calls for it, bang, you're gone,
wiped out. Erased. I find that all a bit final. Too much like real life.
About 30 pages from the end I realized "oh heck, this is another trilogy". Well, it did say
it on the cover, but I'd not checked. So, as mentioned earlier, I turned to Amazon
for a speedy solution.
I recommend this book, and hopefully the series, It was great.
Loaded on the 14th November 2021.