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Paperback Parable of the Talents Book

ISBN: 153873219X

ISBN13: 9781538732199

Parable of the Talents

(Book #2 in the Earthseed Series)

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Format: Paperback

Condition: New

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Book Overview

Originally published in 1998, this shockingly prescient novel's timely message of hope and resistance in the face of fanaticism is more relevant than ever.

In 2032, Lauren Olamina has survived the destruction of her home and family, and realized her vision of a peaceful community in northern California based on her newly founded faith, Earthseed. The fledgling community provides refuge for outcasts facing persecution after the...

Customer Reviews

4 ratings

Is Butler one of the best spec fiction authors? Possibly

At the end of Parable of the Sower Lauren Olamina had founded her first Earthseed community: Acorn. She founded the community with those she found on the highways of California as she tried to find safety somewhere among the violence of the United States. A man who came to travel with Olamina, Bankole, allowed her to use land that he owned. Bankole and Olamina eventually married and she had been teaching the community Earthseed and raising the children in it, her alternate religion that she believes is truth. Now that she has founded Acorn Olamina needs for her community to grow. She needs to spread Earthseed to others, to teach, to preach, to help others to know the truth as she knows it. She also needs Acorn to remain safe and protected as any could be killed, captured into slavery, robbed, or raped. Or all of this could occur. As in the first volume, Parable of the Talents is a novel told primarily in the voice of Lauren Oya Olamina through her journals. So, we are looking at what she wrote of herself and her surroundings from some point in the future. She may have neglected to write about certain events and everything is always from her perspective. This is the part of the format that is the same as Parable of the Sower. What is different is that the chapters include discussion and writing by her daughter, and her daughter has a completely different point of view than Olamina. Shortly after the novel begins we learn that Olamina is pregnant. For her daughter to be writing and writing this well, this has to be coming from at least twenty years in the novel's future if not longer. The daughter offers commentary on Olamina's writing and perspective and gives her own. She also includes brief passages by her father and the occasional passage by Olamina's brother. Together we get a much different view of Olamina as we did in Parable of the Sower. She is still the leader, but her family is resentful and angry. Her daughter comes off as very angry, so we are left to wonder why and we begin to discovery why. The format change was a bit surprising but it was very well done. It is enough to say that Octavia Butler was one of the masters of speculative fiction and she is in complete control here. This harsh vision of our future and even harsher vision of what Olamina and Acorn undergoes is exceptionally moving and powerful and it is part of a brutal world that I didn't want to leave. Wherever I thought Octavia Butler might go with this novel, she went in a completely different direction but one that felt entirely authentic. -Joe Sherry


I love this book. It shows all of human nature: the good, the bad, the chaos, the order-- and how one community can survive anything together. "Parable of the Talents," teaches a new religion called Earthseed. Lauren Olamina, the main character, preaches Earthseed, always saying GOD IS CHANGE. I'm not very religious, but i can relate to all of the verses. Most of them are very true verses, ones that i can relate to. This book is about the world after the Apocalypse. Slave collars are used to control people, sending them lashes mechanically. A provocative but fascinating book-- and long enough to enjoy all of its layers. "Parable of the Talents" is a Science Fiction book-- but not the stereotypical robots and Martians kind of a book. It mostly feels like your reading about history-- even though there are some inventions our society doesn't have. Recommended highly from a person who hasn't liked reading much-- especially science fiction- until this book!

Great things are worth waiting for!

Like many others I anxiously but patiently (if that is possible) awaited Octavia's latest novel, this follow-up to her "Parable of the Sower." Knew I wouldn't be displeased and was correct. Strangely, however, it took me 4 weeks to read, partially because it is a painful rendering of a very plausible future and partly because my life does not allow for much leisure reading. She takes you down and down and down with always glimmers of hope through Earthseed which is a perfect description of human beings struggle to understand life and spirit and hope and what the future holds. A necessary multiple read as there are so many parables and parallels with other literature and real life events. I appreciate the integrity she apparently puts into the writing . A must read!

It was worth the four year wait

Octavia Butler promised this book by 1996, but it was worth the wait! Octavia Butler created a world that will hopefully never occur, but still seems possible. The characters she created search for solutions for the problems of today. I've read the reason she did release the book in 1996 was because she couldn't find answers. But she did find answers it might not have been the easier answers she fought she could create, but it was the answers that hard work and community is what we need to make the world better.

Parable of the Talents Mentions in Our Blog

Parable of the Talents in Celebrating the 30th Anniversary of Parable of the Sower
Celebrating the 30th Anniversary of Parable of the Sower
Published by Ashly Moore Sheldon • September 14, 2023

In 2020, 27 years after its original publication, Octavia Butler's Parable of the Sower finally took its rightful place on the New York Times Best Seller list. Now, in celebration of its thirty year anniversary, we explore Butler's life and legacy and offer a recommended reading list for fans of the author, who passed away in 2006.

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