Lilith's Brood

Lilith's Brood

by Octavia E. Butler

Paperback(includes 3 books)

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Overview

The acclaimed trilogy that comprises LILITH'S BROOD is Hugo and Nebula award-winner Octavia E. Butler at her best.

Presented for the first time in one volume with an introduction by Joan Slonczewski, Ph.D., LILITH'S BROOD is a profoundly evocative, sensual — and disturbing — epic of human transformation.

Lilith Iyapo is in the Andes, mourning the death of her family, when war destroys Earth. Centuries later, she is resurrected — by miraculously powerful unearthly beings, the Oankali. Driven by an irresistible need to heal others, the Oankali are rescuing our dying planet by merging genetically with mankind. But Lilith and all humanity must now share the world with uncanny, unimaginably alien creatures: their own children. This is their story...

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780446676106
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Publication date: 06/01/2000
Series: Xenogenesis Series
Edition description: includes 3 books
Pages: 752
Sales rank: 86,235
Product dimensions: 5.25(w) x 8.00(h) x 1.25(d)

About the Author

OCTAVIA E. BUTLER was a renowned African-American writer who received a MacArthur "Genius" Grant and PEN West Lifetime Achievement Award for her body of work. She was the author of several award-winning novels including Parable of the Talents, which won the Nebula for Best Novel. Acclaimed for her lean prose, strong protagonists, and social observations in stories that range from the distant past to the far future, sales of her books have increased enormously since her death as the issues she addressed in her Afrofuturistic, feminist novels and short fiction have only become more relevant. She passed away on February 24, 2006.

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Lilith's Brood 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 49 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I cannot express how compelling and captivating these books were. I do not understand how someone can write so beautifully and with such imagination. I am quite sad after finishing, in that funny way where you feel as if something is now ending and will not be restored. It is always odd to admit, but these books have forever changed me (in the same way some of my other favorite novels have), and I hope that Butler was able to know before her death that her work had true meaning for some, being a source of complex knowledge and comfort and an affective turbulence that can only come about when you feel you are in the story itself and you crave the imagined world after the pages stop turning. If ever you are looking for a series of novels that is radical and vibrant, this is it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I read Kindred about three years ago and loved it--kept saying that I would pick up another Butler book one of these days. Well, this trilogy was my next Butler purchase--just saw it in B&N a couple days ago and said--three books in one--sounds like I deal. Let me tell you--this was much more of a bargain than I realized. These stories are amazing--entertaining, socially challenging, critical, scary, exciting, the list goes on. I read one a day--couldn't get enough. After each installment, I was breathless and hungry for the next. THIS IS A MUST HAVE. Regardless of what type of books you normally read--this is a great set to own. I will be reading it again soon and look forward to sharing it with friends!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I bought this book just to try a new Sci-fi author and I was amazed. I was travelling and figured the three in one should at least keep me occupied for a couple of days....I received a very pleasant surprise....I read it each night before I went to bed. I fell asleep reading it....not because it was boring book but because I was so immersed in the writer's world that I read until I would fall out. It is a great book....Three in one....each with a little something new to discover. I am definitely a fan now....
Guest More than 1 year ago
And this is her best work, hands down. These three stories (I am ordering them together NOW!) are utterly enthralling and completely original. There is nothing else anywhere like it. Ms. Butler is also an excellent writer - an unbeatable combination - truly original, a natural story teller and a brilliant writer. A must have.
Sonechka More than 1 year ago
Truly exceptional, unusual, and creative science fiction! I was hooked from the start. Octavia Butler's writing is so unique from other 'typical' science fiction writers. Books like these truly prove why we need authors from diverse backgrounds - it opens our minds to whole new concepts.  She is so intelligent about human nature, able to imagine and create a believable new world, able to make us love the most alien of creatures like they are family. I was sad when I stopped reading, and I dreamed of it in my sleep...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This collection has remained a favorite for more than 20 years. Octavia Butler is truly unique and incredibly imaginative. This book had me hooked from page one. Phenomenal read. I highly recommend.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I am so sad my journey is over. Seven hundred pages of pure enjoyment! Butler has created a world so full of life and love and anger and choices and everything. The characters were very well developed, the themes are endless and I truly felt transported into an alternate reality -- Intoxicating!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I've read it once, and again, and again. This collection is a 'must have.' I discover more themes and messages everytime I read it. It's a study of human behavior and psychology, a science fiction novel, and a beautiful story. It is full of suspense, erotic passages, hope, and horror. I was heartbroken when it went out of print and could not share it with all of my friends. Now it is back, so don't miss your chance. This is the classic trilogy complete in one volume: Dawn, Adulthood Rites, and Imago.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I+should++have++read++these++books++years++ago.++Really++good.
LeeHallison on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Excellent science fiction, this isa compilation of three books about an alien society with truly alien physiology and customs. Octavia Butler outdid herself - this is one of my favorite works.Her writing is excellent and her imagination will amaze you.
tronella on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I don't think I can really summarise the plot of this very well, but... it's a book about aliens and humans. The aliens save the humans who survived after most of them died in a huge world war involving giant bombs, but the price of saving them is ... horrible. "The Oankali are biological traders, driven to share genes with other intelligent species, changing both parties." (wikipedia) Well, the survivors end up with the choice: join with the aliens and have tentacular babies, or be sterilised and live on Earth until you die. The aliens creepily love humans because cancer teaches them to be able to regrow limbs. This is great scifi, with the details all thought out, and emotionally manipulative in the best way. The book is mainly about the humans who do choose to stay with the Oankali, and as you read you start to think that things are actually pretty good for them, but every time I started to accept the aliens as non-creepy it would reveal some horrible coercive element of the relationships between an alien and its human mates and I'd be horrified all over again.That is really incoherent. Basically: awesome, creepy scifi, which I enjoyed even more because of its disturbing parts.
PhoebeReading on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Lilith's Brood, actually an omnibus of three novels (Dawn, Adulthood Rites, and Imago) by Octavia Butler, is amazing. These three works are easily the best science fiction novels I've read in the past several years, and the first two are certain contenders for the best novels I've read in years, period.They tell the story of a woman named Lilith, who is resurrected on an alien ship nearly three hundred years after a nuclear apocalypse, as well as the stories of her half-human, half-alien children. Lilith herself is a strong, determined hero--she often makes choices that not only seem unsavory to the people that surround her but are sometimes savory to the reader as well. However, her motivations (self-preservation above all else) always remain clear.But the real centerpiece here are Butler's aliens, the Oankali, a three-gendered, space faring race engaged in an intergalactic gene trade. What they do with the aliens they encounter, including humans, constitutes nothing more than an alien invasion, but because they integrate the species they annihilate into their society--and their sexual practices--they become both terrifying and sympathetic.There's no easy way to say this: the Oankali drug and rape humans to intermingle their genetic material. After this contact is established, normal sexual activity becomes repellent. The sex here, though there's never any physical contact, is really terrifying. The Oankali ooloi, the third-gendered aliens who facilitate these liaisons, are the definition of smooth operators. Because the gene trade is so ingrained in their culture, they are unable to see the ethical problems with their actions. To them, they have saved humanity from annihilation--that pure homo sapiens will die out, and that the Earth will be left a wasteland when the children of man go off to continue the gene trade elsewhere, is largely irrelevant.Wonderfully, the reader's perception of this exchange changes over the course of the three novels. In the first novel, told largely from Lilith's perspective, the Oankali seem to be little more than diabolical, yet disturbingly seductive, creatures. The reader deeply sympathizes with Lilith and the other humans who must make sense of a new life from the vantage of a cloistered space ship, with no possible escape in sight. The second novel, Adulthood Rites, tells the story of Lilith's first Oankali son, who struggles to reconcile both the Oankali and human sides of himself. Despite his place in the alien society, his characterization and motivations seem more firmly human, even as he undergoes a metamorphosis to become a strange, tentacled creature.The third novel, Imago represents the largest perspective shift. Unlike the other novels, it's told in the first person and weaves the story of Jodahs, Lilith's first ooloi child. Jodahs is almost completely alien to us in motivation--although he's different from the ooloi who came before, his primary interests lie in seducing humans. The strength of Butler's character building here is most strongly evident: Jodahs still manages to be sympathetic, somehow.Unfortunately, the pacing of the third book is not quite up to snuff when compared to the first two. In the first novel, particularly, Butler seemed unafraid to let wide gaps of time pass undescribed to the reader. This created great tension and contributed to the horrific, nightmarish feeling of the story. The second novel, similarly, included large chronological gaps as well as drastic setting shifts that contributed well to the half-human, half-alien nature of its protagonist. But the third novel was a bit more pedestrian in its construction, and (particularly as I wasn't able to put Lilith's Brood down for about 10 days until I had finished all 800-some odd pages of it), felt a little rehashed by the conclusion. But despite this, it was still a cut above most sci-fi novels in terms of prose, characterization, and species buildi
sturlington on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Octavia Butler¿s Xenogenesis novels were first compiled into one volume in 1989, but that compilation is now out of print. As with Seed to Harvest, Grand Central Publishing has reissued the compilation in an attractive trade paperback to capture new readers. And I¿m glad they did, because I probably wouldn¿t have read these books otherwise.When I finished Lilith¿s Brood, I actually wasn¿t sure whether I liked it or not, but I thought about it a great deal, which I think is a sign of a book worth reading. The underlying theme disturbed me, partly because I didn¿t find much hope in it, partly because I found myself agreeing with the series¿ assessment: that humankind is fated by our own biology to destroy ourselves.Lilith¿s Brood includes three novels: Dawn, Adulthood Rites and Imago, which comprise the Xenogenesis series. The story starts 250 years after a devastating nuclear war. The few human survivors have been picked up by an alien spacecraft and kept in stasis while the aliens, the Oankali, study them. Lilith is one of the first to be awakened and to be integrated into an Oankali family. She is being trained to awaken others, to introduce them to their new reality and their alien hosts, and to reveal the Oankali¿s plan: to produce Oankali-human offspring, a brand-new hybrid species.The Oankali are genetic engineers and reproduce by genetic manipulation. They have no disease or old age, and they can communicate with one another at the cellular level. They survive by traveling through space and finding species with promising genetic traits to mate with, such as humans. However, this means that humans can no longer reproduce with one another; the Oankalis have disabled their fertility. Also, when the Oankali leave, they will consume the remainder of Earth¿s resources for the journey.Of course, there is rebellion. Many humans choose to live long, childless lives rather than join with the Oankali. Lilith does not, because having been integrated with an Oankali family, she has become physically dependent on them. The next two books follow the lives of two of her children, as the Oankali-human interbreeding progresses. I don¿t think I would have been compelled to keep reading the second novel if it were a separate sequel; each book on its own seems somewhat incomplete.Throughout all three novels, the humans ¿ living in primitive conditions on Earth ¿ are portrayed as without hope, a species that, if allowed to reproduce, would attempt to destroy itself again within a few generations. Humans are hierarchical and competitive, unlike Oankali. As individuals, they can be intelligent and compassionate. But as a group, they are violent, destructive and territorial. Even when the aliens allow some humans to start a new colony on Mars and have children, the Oankali hold out no hope for their future.That¿s what makes this series so disturbing. The only hope posited is essentially that a greater power from the outside will find us, cure all our diseases and create with us a better people than we can ever hope to be. We are unable to cure ourselves, doomed by our own biology to always be fighting and murdering one another. I look at the news every day and feel that this is true. But I don¿t want it to be true. I want humans to be capable of evolving past whatever impulse causes us to want to destroy one another. I want us to save ourselves, not look to some alien or god to save us.But if I¿m looking for that kind of resolution, I won¿t find it in Lilith¿s Brood. Still, I¿m glad I read it. Even if I don¿t ultimately agree with Butler¿s conclusions, her writing made me think about and question some of my own assumptions.
jshillingford on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Butler's Xenogenesis trilogy has been collected and released in this new omnibus edition as "Lilith's Brood" (names after the matriarch of the new race). The three books, "Dawn," "Adulthood Rites," and "Imago," are so intertwined they read like one book anyway, and the larger size is better for more comfortable reading. Because, you'll be unable to put the book down once you start! Butler's writes compelling science fiction rooted in social values and examination of modern society. Her writing is complex, fully fleshed out and engrossing. I cared about the characters, was sometimes disturbed by the story, and completely sucked into her world. I have enjoyed many of her books, but these are still my favorite.Mankind brought itself to the edge of extinction with nuclear holocaust. It is at this moment that the Oankali, an alien race, decide to make contact to "help" us. When Lilith Iyapo is "awakened," she finds that she has been chosen to revive her fellow humans in small groups & train them to survive in the wilderness that earth has become. But the aliens cannot help humanity without altering it forever. Our salvation may also be our utter destruction as a species. What does it truly mean to be human?Though this is science fiction, it reaches a much broader audience. My mother, who does not read scifi at all, enjoyed the trilogy (in fact, all of Butler's work) as much as I did. I cannot recommend this series, and this author, enough.
jlparent on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
3 novels in one- this is excellent science fiction and I highly recommend it. Humans have driven themselves to extinction and aliens rescue a few. These aliens survive by genetic 'trading' and start manipulating the cellular builds of the humans they have saved, merging the two. Within that broad story, there is so much to take in and get lost in, I don't know how to separate it out without giving away the best parts of the story. I'll just say: read it.
dreamweaversunited on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I really wanted to like this. I'm a huge feminist and I've heard Butler writes some of the best feminist science fiction. I also liked the biological aspects of their technology, from the purely sci-fi angle. Except then there was tentacle mind rape, and I had to hide the book far, far away where I would never have to see it and have those terrible images seared into my brain all over again.
derekstaff01 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Butler does a fascinating job of exploring what it is to be human and the value of what humanity is, with all its brilliance and flaws, by proposing a scenario in which humanity is doomed to extinction unless it merges with another species. By accepting, are they becoming less, or becoming more? Butler does a masterful job of presenting all sides of the issue. The story and characterizations are rich and rewarding. Extremely thought provoking.
Excalibur on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book passes a disturbing judgement on humanity and reminds us what it truly means (and what it might take) to evolve. Throughout this novel, we are forced to examine what parts of ourselves are inextricably human and whether or not our humanity is worth sacrificing for the betterment of all. Butler asks us to wonder whether human nature itself is evil, and if so, are we willing to give up our humanity to transcend those parts of ourselves that are intrinsically corrupt.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Everything this woman writes is PURE GOLD.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fantastically written sci-fi that truly makes you think...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have read it more times than I want to admit and every time I'm drawn back in. I dream of the ooloi and the future she envisions and hope one day it will be or at least the world will be more accepting of differences. Great author
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Intresting ideas, wonderful plot, well developed characters...I loved every last word!!!
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