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Heartfire: The Tales of Alvin Maker, Volume V [Mass Market Paperback]

Orson Scott Card
3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
List Price: CDN$ 9.99
Price: CDN$ 9.49 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
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Book Description

May 15 1999 Alvin Maker (Book 5)
Peggy is a Torch, able to see the fire burning in each person's heart. She can follow the paths of each person's future, and know each person's most intimate secrets. From the moment of Alvin Maker's birth, when the Unmaker first strove to kill him, she has protected him.

Now they are married, and Peggy is a part of Alvin's heart as well as his life.

But Alvin's destiny has taken them on separate journeys. Alvin has gone north into New England, where knacks are considered witchcraft, and their use is punished with death.

Peggy has been drawn south, to the British Crown Colonies and the court of King Arthur Stuart in exile. For she has seen a terrible future bloom in the heartfires of every person in America, a future of war and destruction. One slender path exists that leads through the bloodshed, and it is Peggy's quest to set the world on the path to peace.

Frequently Bought Together

Heartfire: The Tales of Alvin Maker, Volume V + The Crystal City: The Tales of Alvin Maker, Volume VI + Alvin Journeyman: The Tales of Alvin Maker, Volume IV
Price For All Three: CDN$ 28.87

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  • The Crystal City: The Tales of Alvin Maker, Volume VI CDN$ 9.89

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    Ships from and sold by Amazon.ca.
    FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ CDN$ 25. Details

  • Alvin Journeyman: The Tales of Alvin Maker, Volume IV CDN$ 9.49

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Product Description

Review

"With delicacy and insight, incorporating folk tales and folk magic with mountain lore and other authentic details, Orson Scott Card has evoked a vision of America as it might have been."-Greensboro Tribune-Review

From the Back Cover

"With delicacy and insight, incorporating folk tales and folk magic with mountain lore and other authentic details, Orson Scott Card has evoked a vision of America as it might have been."-Greensboro Tribune-Review

Peggy is a Torch, able to see the fire burning in each person's heart. She can follow the paths of each person's future, and know each person's most intimate secrets. From the moment of Alvin Maker's birth, when the Unmaker first strove to kill him, she has protected him.

Now they are married, and Peggy is a part of Alvin's heart as well as his life.

But Alvin's destiny has taken them on separate journeys. Alvin has gone north into New England, where knacks are considered witchcraft, and their use is punished with death.

Peggy has been drawn south, to the British Crown Colonies and the court of King Arthur Stuart in exile. For she has seen a terrible future bloom in the heartfires of every person in America, a future of war and destruction. One slender path exists that leads through the bloodshed, and it is Peggy's quest to set the world on the path to peace.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
Only the sound of Alvin's voice could draw Arthur out of his reverie. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as the previous books in the series Feb. 17 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I originally read this when it first came out, then re-read the series when I got the new book (The Crystal City) for Christmas. This one was not as good as the other books in this series.
The story started off very slow, with a lot of nonsense about Arthur Staurt and Audobon (who could have been left out of the book completely) and birds. While this was explained somwhat at the end of the book, it was still too much and too slow. The book does get better near the end, but by that time, there has been too much junk preceeding it to make it seem worthwhile. The dialogue between Denmark and Gullah Joe is particularly boring and painful to read.
I give this book three stars only because of the characters, which are still great, and the ongoing story of Alvin's quest to build the Crystal City, but it wasn't a great story on its own. If you've read the other books in the series, this one is worth reading just to continue the story, but just barely. I hope the next book can return to the great stories from the previous books, if not, then I hope it will at least be the last in this series.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Bad, Bad Cover Art Feb. 12 2004
By tommy z
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I would have given this book an additional star if it wasn't for the terrible art on the cover. I was embarrassed to read this novel in public. The marketing for this series really cheapens the writing. My friends laugh at me when I show them these books, then insist they are good. I would never buy such an ugly book in hardcover. Get with the times, TOR.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great storytelling July 7 2003
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Although this is arguably the best book in the series since the first one, the ending leaves you wanting more and yet still feeling satisfied. 4.5 stars.
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3.0 out of 5 stars OSC didn't take us too far May 20 2003
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Having looked forward to this installment of the Alvin series for a long time, I was quite disappointed when reading the short and seemingly pointless result. New characters are introduced, the plot gets a little creamier, but after a couple hundred pages of waiting to see what the next step is, we're greatly disappointed to find...the end of the book.
This was a surprising release for OSC, especially in this series. It seemed stagnant...or more like a dog chasing its tail. I won't lose faith in the rest of this series because the first three books were so rewarding, but I'll be cautious when reading "Crystal City."
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4.0 out of 5 stars Vintage OSC Dec 10 2002
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is a very good Alvin book. It seems a little watered down, but plenty happens in these pages. Alvin is journeying with his friends, but not with his wife. Peggy is doing her own business in the Crown Colonies to the south. She runs into trouble. So does Alvin, who goes to New England and is accused of being a witch.
Card does Alvin well. I just wish he'd continue the series, as this book left me wanting to know what happens next. I take that as a Good Thing.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent if you ignore the Red Herrings Dec 3 2002
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This the an excellent series. I have had quite a hard time putting them down, however, since I have read them from start to finish I have found quite a few Red Herrings. That asside this newest installment has Alvin actually starting to realize he is a god among men and he stops being quit such a wimp. Highly recommend this book!
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1.0 out of 5 stars Each book in this series gets worse and worse Nov. 7 2002
By Amy
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Make no mistake, I loved "Seventh Son" and felt that my whole appreciation of the fantasy genre was increased tenfold, and it was already quite high. The next two volumes were OK. I felt they were losing sight of the original storyline, but that it might pick up again in later volumes. I was wrong. I wrote a scathing review of the fourth book last year, and I had high hopes of redemption with "Heartfire," but this is one of the worst and strangest books I've ever read.
Where to begin. . .Another boring trial, new characters that do nothing, a heroine named "Chastity" who becomes, instead of a strong female, the girlfriend of Verity as soon as she joins the cast. Most laughable of all, the opinion that witch trials were necessary! In a world where magic is real, I suppose he means, but still. It makes no sense. Alvin goes along with the witch trial because he is in favor of religious government. An acceptable opinion, given proper arguments, which are not provided...
That Alvin and friends would go the New England Colonies to study an ideal society and government makes me twitch with anger. There is a line in "Heartfire" that talks about children in Puritan Massachusetts, something about how there wasn't the sound of an unhappy child anywhere. At first I thought Card was making a joke about how strictly children were treated; parents could and did whip their kids for talking out of turn or not following the rule "seen and not heard." But Card was actually seriously claiming that Puritan children were so well loved and cared for that one never heard them crying...
... I would have liked to read an intelligent defense of Puritanism, but Card does not provide one. There is a Quaker character in the book, but Card doesn't mention what happened to Quakers in the Mass. Bay Colony.
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Format:Mass Market Paperback
HEARTFIRE, the fifth book in Orson Scott Card's "Tales of Alvin Maker" series, is a travesty. Card has ruined this formerly interesting history of an alternate America and Mormon allegory. HEARTFIRE kills the series that came before it like CHILDREN OF THE MIND destroyed the Ender Quartet and EARTHBORN wiped out the Homecoming novels.
At the end of ALVIN JOURNEYMAN, Alvin and Peg Guester were wed and travelled to the home of the Weavers in Appalachee. The beginning of HEARTFIRE sees them departed on separate journeys, Peg has gone to the Crown Colonies to find a way to stop the oncoming war over slavery, while Alvin is wandering around the Northeast and eventually finds himself on trial (again) for witchcraft in Puritan-controlled New England.
There is so much wrong with this novel. The plot is sloppily resolved, and indeed it could be said that Peg's half of the story isn't resolved at all but simply abandoned. Card wraps up Alvin's trial in a mere two pages as if he has grown tired of writing this installment. Calvin's redemption seems like it never progressed past the draft stage. In order to hide his shabby plot and silly characterization, Card stoops to a prurient sex scene where Calvin forces himself on a resisting-but-willing dame like something out of a romance novel (of course, that's what the awful cover art makes the book look like).
Alvin Maker is now essentially omnipotent, communicating telepathically with Peg across huge distances and able to run the entire length of the East Coast in a single night (funny how Card constantly talks about how the greensong is too weak now, but has Alvin perform such deeds). This makes Alvin considerably less interesting as a protagonist, as there are no surprises or suspense.
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