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Prologue - Spoilers etc...

 
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 10, 2017 12:40 am    Post subject: Prologue - Spoilers etc... Reply with quote

Interesting excerpt - http://www.stephenrdonaldson.com/SeventhDecimatePrologue.pdf

I enjoyed reading it, and have already been taken in by the beginning of the story. It's interesting that in the SRD interview http://www.unboundworlds.com/2017/03/stephen-r-donaldson-talks-seventh-decimate-forthcoming-new-book/

he mentions that

Spoiler:
in Seventh Decimate, the main character is Prince Bifalt and his desperate quest to find the knowledge that can save Belleger. But he gets smoked in the Prologue, or so it seems.


That has certainly sparked my interest so far!
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 13, 2017 8:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So he's not done with the theme of knowledge being both good and bad. Reminds me a little of the Clave and the Masters, who thought that knowledge of the past and of Earthpower were bad things, tried to keep people from knowing. Also, the idea of "unearned knowledge" leading to danger.

I personally don't find much use for this. I hope the story is good, but I can't see how knowledge is anything but good. Sure, we get things like atomic bombs, but we also move ourselves closer to reality, the deep nature of things. Knowledge has done far more good than harm. Almost all of the suffering throughout history could have been alleviated with the right knowledge. As David Deutsche pointed out, uncounted humans in our prehistory must have died from exposure right on top of the material they could have used to make fire.

Knowledge is unambiguously good, regardless of the assholes who use it for evil. The evil done in ignorance is far, far greater.
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Remain faithful to the earth, my brothers, with the power of your virtue. Let your gift-giving love and your knowledge serve the meaning of the earth ... Do not let them fly away from earthly things and beat with their wings against eternal walls. Alas, there has always been so much virtue that has flown away. Lead back to the earth the virtue that flew away, as I do-back to the body, back to life, that it may give the earth a meaning, a human meaning. -Nietzsche
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 13, 2017 9:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Zarathustra wrote:
So he's not done with the theme of knowledge being both good and bad. Reminds me a little of the Clave and the Masters, who thought that knowledge of the past and of Earthpower were bad things, tried to keep people from knowing. Also, the idea of "unearned knowledge" leading to danger.

And, of course, he doubled down on this concept with the Masters in the Last Chronicles.

I really liked the Prologue. It took me a page or two to get into it, but by the end, he had me hooked. SRD is a bit of a sorcerer himself with his words, they seem to hypnotize me.

It says "spoilers" in the title, so I assume we have free reign here?

The idea of guns versus sorcery intrigues me. The names of the characters and places have a distinct flavor, but I am not quite sure if I like it yet. And I crowed out loud at the reveal of the queen/bride's name Spoiler:
Malorie!

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 15, 2017 12:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, I don't think he's done with the theme of knowledge being both good and bad - in fact the second novel is tentatively titled Knowledge and Evil - one side thinks knowledge is absolutely good, and the other side think that knowledge corrupts, and it is used to abuse and scorn those who have none.

I also think he is getting a bit more heavy handed with the character names and their meanings. Maybe I just notice it more, but in the recent novellas they appeared to be pretty blatant.
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 15, 2017 2:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Consider me hooked! Although there's nothing especially new about sorcery vs Spoiler:
guns
, the writing is crisp, the characters are interesting and the prologue ending was totally unexpected. I'm looking forward to seeing how Donaldson explores his theme of knowledge where it is perceived as good and is open and accessible to all or alternately, where knowledge is bad since it changes those it comes in contact with and corrupts. I would have an easier time accepting a viewpoint where some knowledge holders want to limit access for their own selfish reasons, but that is a mere quibble. Full disclosure, I'm a librarian, so for me knowledge and information are meant to be shared. I'm very grateful that Steve is writing something of this magnitude at this stage in his career.
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 16, 2017 4:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

"Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up." -Paul the Apostle

I was reminded of a Star Trek (the original series) episode, where the Klingons and the Federation are arming natives of a planet with escalating technology in order to manipulate the war so one side or the other can now exploit the planet... I remember my Dad saying that it was basically about Vietnam. But the idea of manipulating war and politics through technology and knowledge is a time-honored theme, and it would be a balancing act not to get into polemic territory. So we shall see, shan't we? I've already pre-ordered!
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PostPosted: Thu May 04, 2017 11:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It was like reading an entire story in 11 pages.
Honestly, if it was a short story it would have been satisfying enough.

I think that this is going to be a very full story
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