Book - 2010
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Thirteen-year-old Rigg has a secret ability to see the paths of others' pasts, but revelations after his father's death set him on a dangerous quest that brings new threats from those who would either control his destiny or kill him.
Publisher: New York : Simon Pulse, 2010
Characteristics: 662 p. ; 22 cm
Edition: 1st Simon Pulse hardcover ed
Audience: "Ages 12 up"--Book jacket
ISBN: 9781416991762


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IndyPL_SteveB Apr 19, 2019

The first book in what might be the most complex YA series ever written. If I give plot “spoilers,” it might mess up your reading of the book – not because you will learn too much; but because you will learn the wrong things. Just about every plot and character point is turned sideways a few chapters later, then turned upside and shaken thoroughly later. That’s because these are books about time travel in which information traveling backwards in time changes the present, over and over, restarting some plot lines and sending others in two directions at once.

This first book appears to be alternating chapters of a fantasy novel and a science fiction novel. On the ground, Rigg has spent his first 13 years as a trapper and forager, being taught by his father – taught not only woodcraft and hunting, but also languages, history, politics, psychology. What is he being trained FOR? Rigg discovers that he has the ability to read the paths that people or animals have taken over time and that this ability can allow him to track people for hundreds of years in the past. Then he discovers that a friend of his, Umbo, can actually move backward in time and return to the present. When Riggs’s father is killed by a falling tree, his last words to Rigg are for Rigg and Umbo to head to the capital city to find their destinies. Meanwhile…. out in space a fleet of settlers are heading to a planet. Something goes very wrong in a space-time jump and the ship captains have to make a fateful decision about where and how they are going to land. Of course these two stories are related; but perhaps not in the ways you think they are.

Super well-written and fast-moving. I recommend you read all three books closely together, for both the adventure of it and to have some chance of not getting lost in the plot. Sequels are *Ruins* and *Visitors*.

I was thrilled to read another great book by Orson Scott Card, well-known for his science fiction series Ender’s Game. In this book, Rigg has the unique ability to see the life journey of every living creature. When his father dies, Rigg must travel to meet his sister that he hadn’t even known existed until his father’s death. Rigg is joined by Umbo, who has his own fascinating ability, and they are pursued by those that would see them executed. This book kept me speculating about Rigg’s ability and why his father would have kept so many secrets. Simultaneously, there is another story, with Ram who travels on a ship away from Earth. The stories seem completely unrelated… Anyway, I was fascinated with the adventure and intrigued by this new world, not unlike our own. A new favourite! (submitted by SMC)

Nov 13, 2014

As usual for Card, a book with a young boy as its main protagonist. It does, however, treat its other major characters with respect. This series, with just 2 books so far, contains fantasy and science-fiction elements, and it is certainly a thinking book, very being thought-provoking. Understanding time travel always creates a headache, however I believe that Card handles the subject better than many other authors, including Crichton (Timeline). I have also read the second book, Ruin, and think it is a great addition. I look forward to a third book, if it is coming. Highly recommended.

A really great read, a different planet but the adolescent boy is still the humble hero. HOWEVER the follow up book Ruin, should be 2-3 chapters at the end of this book so that this plot completes in the one story. The sequel is terrible and a waste of reading time. The concept of the Pathfinder and time slicers and computer run planet is one strong story, not two.

alicat120 Jul 16, 2014

I found this book quite entertaining. A lot of people said it was too confusing, however I enjoyed figuring it out and wouldn't change anything about the book. There was lots of adventure and there was never a dull moment.

TitaniumFang Apr 14, 2014

Loved the adventure in it and how unique Rigg's power was.

Apr 04, 2014

An adventure with a mix of fantasy and science fiction. The book explore the time travel paradoxes.

Dec 27, 2013

Enthralling from the first page. Characters you can easily relate to, and a compelling mystery (or several) to solve. I disagree with those who thought the time travel concept was difficult to understand. It was well explained, in bite-sized pieces that added to the fun of solving the mysteries. But if you want to know how it all works before you begin, just flip to the Acknowledgements section at the back of the book. (It won't spoil the main story for you.)

Aug 26, 2013

This book is basically about time travel. It is very complicated, but a great read. Highly recommended to my contemporaries; other teenage readers. Doctor-at-Bass! T. A.

Jun 15, 2013

Enjoyable read, though overly long due to Card's inability to "self-edit" all the convoluited time-travel explanation, which personally made things more, rather than less confusing. It was almost as if he was trying to explain with hard science, what was truly a construct of his own mind, and not scientifically possible, in our time anyway. The afterword which brings some clarity to the parallel stories in every chapter, should be read once you've started the novel rather than left for the end to bring more clarity to this literary device. Not on the level of Ender's Game, but clever and inventive. Continued in the book Ruins.

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Jan 29, 2017

cassinelso thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over

rayyou94 Jul 04, 2013

rayyou94 thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over

Nov 04, 2012

burgundy_raven_7 thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over

Apr 29, 2012

IvanBello thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

Nov 07, 2011

naruto12 thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over


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Jun 18, 2012

If you talk like someone used to being obeyed, people will obey you. But if you talk like someone who fears being disobeyed, they will despise you.


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