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Red Prophet by Orson Scott Card Review

Title: Red Prophet

Author: Orson Scott Card

First published January 28, 1988

311 pages, Mass Market Paperback

ISBN: 9780812524260 (ISBN10: 0812524268)

Rating: 3.8


Enter into a world of wonder and magic in Orson Scott Card’s Red Prophet. Experience the captivating story of Alvin Maker, the seventh son of a seventh son, who possesses extraordinary abilities.

As he discovers the secrets of the land and its people, Alvin’s powers continue to grow, revealing a destiny that will change the course of history. Don’t miss out on this enchanting journey through an alternate America.

About the Author

Orson Scott Card is a well-known author of several popular novels, including Ender’s Game, Ender’s Shadow, and Speaker for the Dead. These books have been enjoyed by both adults and younger readers alike, and are now being used more frequently in schools.

In addition to his science fiction works, Card also writes contemporary fantasy novels such as Magic Street, Enchantment, and Lost Boys. He has also written biblical novels like Stone Tables and Rachel and Leah, and the American frontier fantasy series, The Tales of Alvin Maker.

Card spent his childhood in various states such as California, Arizona, and Utah before eventually serving as a missionary for the LDS Church in Brazil during the early 1970s. Alongside his writing, he occasionally teaches classes and workshops, and also directs plays.

Recently, he has taken up a long-term position as a professor of writing and literature at Southern Virginia University.

Currently, Orson Scott Card resides in Greensboro, North Carolina, with his wife, Kristine Allen Card, and their youngest child, Zina Margaret.

Editoral Review

Orson Scott Card’s Red Prophet is a gripping and thought-provoking novel that challenges readers to question their assumptions about history, identity, and power. First published in 1988, this book is a masterpiece of science fiction and alternative history, blending elements of fantasy, adventure, and social commentary into a richly imagined world that feels both familiar and strange.

As one of the most celebrated writers in the genre, Card is known for his ability to create complex characters and intricate plots that explore the human condition in all its diversity. In Red Prophet, he continues this tradition, crafting a story that centers on a Native American boy named Alvin Miller Jr. who possesses extraordinary powers that make him both feared and revered by those around him.

Set in a version of America where the Revolutionary War never happened and the English Crown still rules over the colonies, Red Prophet depicts a society that is deeply divided along racial and ethnic lines. While white settlers dominate the land and hold most of the power, Native Americans and black slaves struggle to survive in a hostile environment that seeks to erase their traditions and identities.

Against this backdrop, Alvin Jr. must navigate a world that seeks to exploit his abilities while denying him his heritage. With the help of his mentor, the Red Prophet, and other allies, he embarks on a journey that takes him across the continent in search of his destiny and his place in the world.

What makes Red Prophet so compelling is the way that Card weaves together themes of identity, culture, and destiny into a story that is both entertaining and meaningful. As readers follow Alvin Jr. on his quest, they are forced to confront their own assumptions about race, power, and justice, and to grapple with the ethical dilemmas that arise when different cultures collide.

The novel is also notable for its richly realized setting and vividly drawn characters. From the forests of Ohio to the plains of Kansas, Card paints a detailed portrait of a world that is both beautiful and brutal, and that challenges his characters to survive and thrive in the face of adversity.

Along the way, readers meet a diverse cast of characters, from the ruthless Governor Harrison to the gentle Red Prophet, each with their own motivations and agendas that drive the plot forward. While there are some minor flaws in the book, such as a tendency towards cliché in some of the dialogue and characters, these are outweighed by the novel’s strengths.

Overall, Red Prophet is a must-read for fans of science fiction, fantasy, and alternative history, and for anyone interested in exploring the complexities of race, identity, and power in America’s past and present. It is a book that challenges readers to think deeply about themselves and their place in the world, and that rewards them with a richly satisfying and immersive reading experience.

Rating: 4.5/5