Heartfire : Tales of Alvin Maker

  • by Orson Scott Card
  • Narrated by full cast
  • Series: Tales of Alvin Maker
  • 12 hrs and 11 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

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.

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What the Critics Say

"Another in Card's superior fantasy series about Alvin Smith....one more absorbing entry in this brilliantly conceived and fetchingly rendered series." (Kirkus Reviews)
"Alvin and Peggy's adventures are set against an intriguing backdrop of what America might have been....Card is a consummate storyteller able to create a believable world peopled with strong, solid characters." (Voya)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Heartfire and the Alvin series

This Audible presentation of Card's Alvin series is a triumph. It is centred around the premise that innate skills can manifest as magical 'knacks' that can change the world. This is no 'twee' story however as it raises issues of prejudice, slavery and religion in a context that grabs the listener's attention and leaves them wanting more. I have read most of Card's bibliography but listening to these stories provides a new opportunity to enjoy this master story-teller at his best.
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- Ted

Exponential decay in a book series.

Shockingly uneventful. Even if you have read through the previous four installments in this series and noted a slowing down in the story, nothing can prepare you for exactly how little happens in this book. I have read many of OSC's books and thoroughly enjoyed them, including all the 'Ender' and 'Enders Shadow' series, most of which (with exceptions) have a brilliant combination of story, action and character, so it is utterly bizarre just how little Orson has to say in this book.

On the first audiobook of this series, there is an introduction by OSC himself declaring his intention of writing a series of very American fantasy books 'to rival The Lord of the Rings'.
Unfortunately, he seems to have completely given up on this somewhat optimistic idea and has instead fashioned a series of books that are starting to make the Slough telephone directory look like the script for the new Jerry Bruckheimer movie.

I now have the very real dilemma of whether, for closure, to put myself through listening to the sixth and currently last in the series (so far, as the author has threatened a seventh!) or to preserve those 11 never-to-be-regained hours of my life for something more rewarding.

To quote Danny from the cult-film 'Withnail and I', 'If you're hanging on to a rising balloon, you're presented with a difficult decision - let go before it's too late or hold on and keep getting higher, posing the question: how long can you keep a grip on the rope?'

I think it may be time to let go. Two broken legs and a fractured pelvis have to be better than this.
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- Sara

Book Details

  • Release Date: 20-08-2007
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.