Wednesday, 25 September 2013
Book: Legend of Kor by D R Hirsch
Ann, Ed, Tom and Glenna are energynauts, agents of ONE, the energy force that created the universe. The four friends are sent to the planet Kor, a small planet made up of four conjoined countries, Selve, Wale, Emon and Voun. The people of Kor are being suppressed by the dictator from Selve, Gog, and need to be brought together in order to defeat him. That is where the energynauts come in, with their ability to thought travel and fully integrate with the locals, they are able to bring the group of resistance leaders together.
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There are some pretty serious topics broached in Legend of Kor, namely those relating to genocide and the Holocaust, as well as other war crimes that can be committed. There are many parallels between Gog, and his dictatorship of Selve and the wish to exterminate the Wales, to Hitler and Nazi Germany. These comparisons are both drawn from the readers knowledge, and from inside of the story. Within the story the comparisons tend to come from the energynaut, Tom, who won his last life game as a Polish Jew in the Holocaust. As you can probably imagine this leads to some pretty depressing and sad scenes, including those in which some characters meet tragic and violent ends. It is also worth warning you that there are some mentions of some pretty brutal rape in Legend of Kor, though thankfully they aren't described in a great amount of detail.
One of the other, fairly deep ideas in Legend of Kor is that of a life game. A life game is won by accepting love and oneness with ONE. All four of the energynauts have won their life games, and are around to help the people of Kor in whatever, peaceful way, that they can. Of course the whole idea of the life games links to the idea of God, or ONE as he is known in the book, though even that is up for debate between the characters.
One thing that I found quite difficult about this book was the over simplified narrative. I liked the way that it switched between characters to give you a complete overview, but it never got into any real depth, none of the characters particularly questioned anything, even the death around them, the existence of God, or whether they were doing the right thing. Everything just fell into place without actually much happening to make that happen. Sometimes it really felt that I was reading the same conversation four times just with different names saying them, which I thought really let the book down.
This was a quick read, with some interesting concepts but an over simplified style.