Monday, August 2, 2010


Three large military tanks were chugging along up the street.  It was a sight to behold on the way to church.  Especially after so many failed attempts to leave the house and get to church on time.  Meat left on the counter.  Important papers forgotten.  Late but finally on our way and there are huge military vehicles driving in the left lane as if nothing was going on. 

I turned to Heath and said, “Is San Francisco going to be taken hostage today?”

He laughed.  He knows I just finished reading Empire by Orson Scott Card.  The out of place military tanks on a Sunday morning reminded me all too well of a scene in the book where the two main characters went sight seeing before church.  They were not spiritually uplifted that day! 

Our church meetings were business as usual.  No announcements that the state or country was in danger.  No surprising noises.  Just meetings that ran late because the topic of miracles was so near and dear to the members’ hearts that we couldn’t stop talking in time. 

There are so many things I would like to say about Empire but I don’t want to give anything away.  I will say that my heart pounded as I read.  In fact, I had to take a lot of breaks from this book because it was so intense.  One time I needed a break from all the craziness in the story.  I put the book down and read a blog post that had come through on an RSS feed.  My head was spinning!  I walked away thinking that real life was every bit as dramatic with unclear answers as what I was reading. 

I am the kind of person that throws myself completely into a story.  Whether it’s a book, movie, TV show, or a Foundation for a Better Life commercial (just kidding!), I experience it fully.  Empire felt so plausible and so real it took my breath away. 

Normally I don’t read politically charged books or modern military stories.  But this book has interested me every time Heath has read it.  He has tried to convince me to read it many times.  I finally just picked it up and went for it.  The first couple of chapters were boring to me.  I felt lost and uninterested.  I was going to give it one more chapter to capture my attention.  Kaboom!  I was swept up in the plot.  The adrenaline never stopped after that.

Many times I considered throwing the book across the room.  It was too real.  Too intense.  Too horrible.  I would call Heath and tell him I hated his book!  He knew that meant I really loved it but was just so caught up in the incredible story.  On Friday before he left for work he told me he expected two phone calls from me that day.  One to tell him about Parker’s appointment and the second call would come after I read what happened at the Pentagon.

Just when I thought things couldn’t get any worse they did.  I read out of a desperate hope that something had to get better.  I love love love the ending.  It was not what I expected at all and that is what made it so great.  This book is simply amazing.  Orson Scott Card is a fabulous storyteller.  I don’t think I have ever been so involved in a story all while congratulating an author’s writing style. 

I highly recommend this book to anyone and everyone.  When you read it let me know.  I would love to discuss it in detail. 

4 thoughts:

mintifresh said...

I love a book like that, unless there is no one around me that has read it cuz then I can't discuss it with anyone! I'm gonna have to check that out!

Still wondering what the tanks were all about, tho....and eventful trip to church-I bet the boys loved it!

The Piquant Storyteller said...

Yeah, I don't know why there were tanks on the way to church. But there is a military base in the next city over from us. My brother in law has done guard duty there before.

If you're going to read this book DO NOT read my Goodreads review! While I didn't say much I said enough that it may ruin the surprise of some parts. You would love this book!

MT said...

This reminded me of a story someone told me last week. The Make a Wish Foundation granted a wish to a sick boy in my area - he wanted to play army for a day, so the real army came in their full uniforms, with big military vehicles and everything.

The Piquant Storyteller said...

Michelle, that sounds like so much fun for that boy. That would have been really cool to see.