Parable of the Talents (novel)

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Parable of the Talents
Cover of first edition (hardcover)
Author Octavia E. Butler
Country United States
Language English
Series Parable trilogy
Genre Dystopian, Science fiction novel
Publisher Seven Stories Press
Publication date
Media type Print (Hardcover & Paperback)
Pages 365 pp (first edition, hardback)
ISBN 1-888363-81-9 (first edition, hardback)
OCLC 39478160
813/.54 21
LC Class PS3552.U827 P38 1998
Preceded by Parable of the Sower

Parable of the Talents is the second in a series of science fiction novels written by Octavia E. Butler and published in 1998.[1]


Parable of the Talents (1998) (the sequel to Parable of the Sower) tells the story of how, as the U.S. continues to fall apart, the protagonist's community is attacked and taken over by a bloc of religious fanatics who inflict brutal atrocities. The novel is a harsh indictment of religious fundamentalism, and has been compared in that respect to Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale.[2]

Proposed third Parable novel[edit]

Butler had planned to write a third Parable novel, tentatively titled Parable of the Trickster, which would have focused on the community's struggle to survive on a new planet. She began this novel after finishing Parable of the Talents, and mentioned her work on it in a number of interviews, but at some point encountered a writer's block. She eventually shifted her creative attention, resulting in Fledgling, her final novel. The various false starts for the novel can now be found among Butler's papers at the Huntington Library, as described in an article at the Los Angeles Review of Books.[3]

Publication and award history[edit]

Published by Seven Stories Press in 1998, by Quality Paperback Book Club in 1999, by Women's Press Ltd. in 2000 and 2001, by Warner in 2000 and 2001, and by Seven Stories Press in 2017.[4][5]

See also[edit]

Further reading[edit]


  1. ^ Jonas, Gerald (January 3, 1999). "Science Fiction". The New York Times. 
  2. ^ Diemer Llewellyn, Jana (2006). "Rape in feminist utopian and dystopian fiction". The University of Hong Kong Libraries. 
  3. ^ Canavan, Gerry (June 9, 2014). ""There's Nothing New / Under The Sun, / But There Are New Suns": Recovering Octavia E. Butler's Lost Parables". Los Angeles Review of Books. Retrieved May 19, 2016. 
  4. ^ a b Holden, Rebecca J.; Shawl, Nisi, eds. (2013). "Annotated Butler Bibliography". Strange Matings: Science Fiction, Feminism, African American Voices, and Octavia E. Butler. Seattle, WA: Aqueduct Press. p. 284. 
  5. ^

External links[edit]