Customer Reviews


1,167 Reviews
5 star:
 (803)
4 star:
 (240)
3 star:
 (57)
2 star:
 (41)
1 star:
 (26)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favorable review
The most helpful critical review


136 of 147 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Legend Continues
Every few years, a book comes along that burns into the very core of the reader, leaving memory of the book for many, many years to come. When ENDER'S GAME first appeared in the mid-80's, the groundbreaking novel did more to turn legions of "mainstream" readers into sci-fi fans. The gripping human drama in that Hugo & Nebula winning book left many of us...
Published on November 17, 2000

versus
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A fine book
The book is worth reading. I'd read all ender books so decided to take my chances with this one. It wasn't disappointing. This time the central character id Beam, whom you may remember as one of ender's companions from battle school. We learn about his origins as street urchin from Rotterdam until his genius is discovered and sent to training. The book is well presented...
Published on August 9, 2001 by randy


‹ Previous | 18 9 10117 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Bean, like Alvin, is too perfect to believe., September 28, 1999
By A Customer
I really enjoy Orson Scott Card's fiction, especially the Ender's Game series. However, he tends to overload his lead characters with superhuman abilities. In Ender's Shadow, this process happens too fast, and we never can appreciate the development of Bean's personality. We don't get to see him learn and grow the way we did with Ender in the first book. And while, as always, the world Card creates is engrossing in the tiny details, we've seen this one before, and it's not enough to carry the story. I would recommend reading "Lost Boys" or "Saints" instead, and saving your money on "Ender's Shadow."
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars loved the shadow!, November 23, 1999
By A Customer
Ender's Shadow is a wonderful addition to the Ender series. I had a hard time putting it down. I feel like instead of taking away from the original book it added a new dimension to it and gave me more insight into Ender's Game. I loved Bean's character and how he overcame so many obstacles in his life and never felt cheated with what he was given. After reading Ender's Shadow I had to go back and reread Ender's Game to relive it through Ender's eyes. And i still loved that one as much too. They really compliment each other! Great reading.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


10 of 14 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Ender's Shadow does not live up to Ender's Game..., December 13, 1999
This is a parallel novel to Ender's Game. It relates the same events of Ender's Game, but from the point of view of Bean. Ender's Shadow begins when Bean is four years old and barely surviving on the street. It tell of his struggle to survive and then his triumph in being accepted to Battle School. This novel has some new surprises in it. Surprises that I thought were unbelieveable. The book itself is a good read, however, it is not as good as Ender's Game. Some of the revelations are just too much in the sense that you almost feel contempt for Ender and shout to yourself, "Why doesn't he see this? Why is he letting himself be manipulated by Bean?". At least I did! I just did not accept or want to accept what Card was telling us about Bean. I have been looking forward to this novel for months and I can tell you that I was disappointed! The concept was so great, but I think that Card fell a little short on Ender's Shadow.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ender's Shadow, November 1, 2004
A Kid's Review
Orson Scott Card's second book in the Ender's Game series is magnificent. It is a parallel novel to Ender's Game. It is about Bean, a four year old genius. He grew up on the streets with no family or friends and learned to survive on his own. One year later, Bean is taken by the I.F. (International Fleet) to Battle School. Battle School is in space. It is where kids are trained to fight a hostile alien race called the Buggers. When Bean gets to Battle School he is said to be like Ender Wiggin, the other super genius in the school. When the "students" at Battle School become a certain age they are drafted into "armies." The armies battle each other in the battle-room. The battle-room is a cubed room in null-g. Each person gets a flash suit and a type of gun that freezes people. To win the commander of the army has to get four people from his army to put their helmets on the four corners of the enemy's doorway and have one person go through the door. When Bean is six years old he gets drafted into an army. Ender's Dragon Army. Dragon Army is undefeated until Ender goes to Command School. Bean becomes the commander of Rabbit Army and Bean's one true friend, Nikolai, is drafted into a different army. Nearly one month later, Bean and some of Ender's friends are taken to Tactical School and then to Command School. Can Ender, Bean, and their friends defeat the Buggers and save Earth?

Ender's Shadow is just like Ender's Game. It is exciting, suspenseful, and has lots of twists and turns. Bean is the main protagonist in the story. There are other protagonists including Ender and Bean's best friend, Nikolai. There are many antagonists. The teachers at Battle School are in control of everything that the students do and try to stop things from happening. That makes them antagonists. Another antagonist is the Third Invasion of the Buggers. If it weren't for the Buggers nobody would be in Battle School. Orson Scott Card is good at character development. All the characters seemed real. I could imagine Bean walking through the door at this very moment. Card also did a good job of distinguishing the round and foil characters. Bean and Ender were round characters. The teachers and the Buggers are foil characters. There was also a good theme. The theme of Ender's Shadow is the same as in Ender's Game. The theme is that the champion never gives up. After Dragon Army wins their first couple games they can't loses because they would be humiliated by the other armies. Bean believes in many things. He is opposite from the Assyrians. He believes in peace and justice. Orson Scott Card made a good ending. He first made it predictable. Then he changed the story around so that the ending was more surprising.

Bean and I are very similar. We both believe in peace and justice. We can both survive on our own. We are also good leaders. Of all the similarities between Bean and I there is one that stands out. The one that stands out is the fact that we are both short.

If you liked Ender's Shadow you should read these books: Speaker for the Dead, Xenocide, Children of the Mind, and Shadow of the Hegemon to name a few.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Card�s description makes this a sequel great, February 22, 2004
By A Customer
Orson Scott Card uses great description in the novel, Ender's Shadow. His description of things such as how Bean feels or why there is zero gravity in the center of the ship. These descriptions make you feel as if you are right there in the story. Card's descriptions strengthen the novel incredibly. Card makes you want to keep on reading, because the story just pulls you in until you are done reading. You can not go one page in the book without having imagery that makes you almost able to touch and see what is really going on. Little kids think that they will not like chapter books because they do not have any pictures, but Orson Scott Card makes the story as if every page has a picture and there are no words.
Orson's description increased my likings of this book, because there are a lot of boring books out there that have great diction or a cool dialect. Those books lack description to give you an extremely clear picture of the setting of the story. Description lightens up a dull book with just a few imagery words. Things like, "the boilers were rough scrap metal, with about a million holes." A book can have the most stupid characters but it can still be a good story if it has the right amount of description. Normal people want to be able to visualize what is happening in the story they are reading, and description pleases them. Card's novel, Ender's Shadow, is a page turner with all of the description of the setting, characters, etc.
Great novels' are made by the description of the story. If you are reading a comforting story, then it is good to know that the place where the main characters live is a peaceful place. Ender's Shadow is a novel full of suspense, and the setting reflects that. The space station is dark and dreary, and filled with the lies of the teachers. Rotterdam is described as a war zone between the young kids, and the large powerful bullies. Card's description causes a change in your mood when Bean goes from Rotterdam to Battle School. Battle school is still an unsafe place, but it is a lot better than in Rotterdam. When Card decides to end the novel he again changes the mood. When Bean is re-united with is family, you get a feeling of security and comfort because it is a happy ending.
Evidently, Orson Scott Card's description made this novel even better then it would have been with out it. He makes the reader keep reading, making them anticipate what might happen next. The description makes the scene at battle school come to life right before your reading eyes. Some books are really interesting and with great description it makes the book even better then the book was already. Ender's Shadow was a great story, along with his great character structure and his well planned out description of everything in space. He made me feel as if I was following Bean along in the space station to everything he did. Description makes any book with no pictures a great book that has many "mind pictures". Orson Scott Card makes Ender's Shadow a picture book with no words, even though it is really a book with no pictures but all there is, is words to describe and make mental pictures for the reader. The description made this book a great story.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ender's Shadow Review, January 26, 2004
By 
Nicholas (Napa, CA USA) - See all my reviews
Ender's Shadow is now, quite possibly, my favorite book, because of its excitement and suspense. In my opinion, to fully appreciate and understand this book, Ender's Game should be read beforehand. I think this because the main character in Ender's Shadow, who is simply named Bean, is introduced in Ender's Game. Also, some of the more complicated ideas, such as "Battle School," and some of its many rules are also introduced in Ender's Game.
To interest the reader as soon as possible, Orson Scott Card immediately starts the book by demonstrating how much of a genius Bean is. He does this not by telling what he can do, but he puts Bean in a situation that Bean must deal with to survive. This situation is the horrible street slums of Rotterdam. This isn't only where he learns to survive, but also where he makes loyal friends, but also enemies. He also demonstrates his ability to learn languages within a week! Although this seems unrealistic at first, all is explained in the book.
A major thing I like about the way this book was written, is how it built suspense. For example, a character would be thinking about how he will frame, or even kill another character, and the plan seems so ingenious that it can't fail, then right when the character is about to make his move, the chapter ends, and it switches to a completely different part of the story. This certainly made me read for hours more trying to find out what happens next!
Another quality I like about the way Orson Scott Card writes, is he adds history into his books. For instance, he compares strategy used by Napoleon, to strategy used in the middle ages. Not only are these strategies interesting, but he demonstrates, and gives examples of when they were used, and when a good time to use them would be. I like history a lot, so this addition just enhanced my enjoyment for the book. Orson Scott Card also developed his characters very well, and by the end of the first chapter, I was in love with Bean. This also caused problems though, because I was always worried something would happen to Bean, because he was constantly in dangerous situations. I almost wanted to skip ahead and find out what happens, but I resisted, and it payed off!
In conclusion, I extremely highly recommend Ender's Shadow, by Orson Scott Card to everyone. I know this book was recommended to me because I needed to read a book in a short period of time, and I just couldn't put it down! I also highly recommend the author, I have read some of the other books written by Orson Scott Card, and I have loved all of them! This is definitely a must read, and a must reread! I hope this review helped in making a decision about this book.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Spectacular parallel novel to Ender's Game, April 10, 2003
By 
"Ender's Game" told the haunting tale of a young child burdened with unspeakable responsibilities and tasks in a hyper-militarized society. Ender Wiggin was viewed as the last best hope for planet Earth in decades-long war with an alien species called 'Buggers'. The journey as Wiggin began to realize the expectations of him and comes to terms with the loneliness and burden of command (and the jealousies of other Battle School children) made for one of the most compelling science fiction novels written in recent years.

In "Ender's Shadow", author Orson Scott Card takes the unique approach of telling the story of the same events and time period, but telling it from a completely different point of view. In "...Shadow", Card takes one of Ender Wiggin's most trusted lieutenants from "Ender's Game", a tiny spud of a child named Bean, and tells the story from Bean's angle. While such an endeavor could seem as nothing more than a lazy way to cash in on the popularity of "Ender's Game", "Ender's Shadow" actually ends up telling the equally compelling of Bean.

Bean grew up in a virtual hell on the streets of Rotterdam. Because of rapidly advanced intelligence, he was able to survive and latch on with one of the local gangs of children in spite of meager age of four years and tiny stature. It is on these streets and in this gang that Bean learns the skills of influence and leadership while also being exposed to the worst of humanity. Certain actions by Bean catch the attention of a 'recruiter' (a nun named Sister Carlotta) for the Battle School, who recommends that he be sent there for training and as a possible last hope if the Battle School's 'secret weapon' (Ender) fails.

There are many parallels between "Ender's Game" and "Ender's Shadow", which is to be expected, given that it takes place during the same time frame. Bean, like Ender, is singled out by the administrators of the Battle School for his command potential and put in situations that earn the envy and animosity of his fellow soldiers. Bean also must deal with an arch-enemy like Ender did. Unlike Ender's conflict with the egomaniacal Bonzo Madrid, Bean caught the ire of the cold and calculating Achilles while he was still in Rotterdam. Through an oversight, Achilles was admitted to Battle School as well and becomes a constant threat to Bean.

The differing story angles enhance the overall scope of the Ender's saga. In the original four books of the Ender's quartet, the events following the destruction of the Buggers are only briefly referenced as Ender goes off on his time travel exile. "Ender's Shadow" deals explicitly with what may happen one Earth once the war is over. Ender was merely concerned with defeating the Buggers. Bean is concerned with defeating the Buggers AND what will become of the unstable geo-political situation on Earth after the war is over. It truly makes for fascinating reading. At no point does the reader feel as though the events are mere rehashes of previous material. The curiosity and thirst for knowledge of the events to come that is created by "Ender's Shadow" feeds perfectly into it's sequel "Shadow of the Hegemon". Such spectacular storytelling is why Card is one of the finest contemporary science fiction officers there is.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I wish I had read this one first..., December 16, 2002
This book is the telling of how in the future in order to prepare for the alien threat combat schools employee doctrination and training in kids as young as 5yrs old. The kids are trained to eventually be the fighting force and the commanding officers down the road when the second wave of attacks come. This story is a rehash of Ender's Game but from the perspective of Bean. Here are my two cents worth:
1) First off, everthings I've read from Orson Scott Card I've thoroughly enjoyed. His prose and flow are very enjoyable and this book is no different. The fact that the author braves retelling the same story but from another character's perspective I tip my hat to him for bravery.
2) BUT...I really felt this book was too long at times. I felt the internal conversations Bean has just go on, and on, and on resulting in this being the biggest failing of this book.
3) No matter how much Card tells us Bean is super intelligent I really felt that the mental converstations Bean has are too mature. Intelligence does not beget maturity.
4) Reading the same story but from a different character's perspective wasn't as enjoyable as other reviewers make it out to be. It was nice to get Bean's background and see how he gets himself into battle school. But once he is there it isn't as intriguing and suspensful as Ender's Game. It would be better just to re-read Ender's Game over again for the battle school experience.
5) I do look forward to Shadow of the Hegimon (sp?) as this will be a fresh story with the same likeable characters.
OVERALL: I would have enjoyed this book so much more if I had read this one first then Ender's Game second. If you have a choice I think you will get a lot more out of Ender's Game and enjoy this book more than I did.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ender's Shadow Book Review, December 12, 2001
By 
Ender's Shadow
By: Orson Scott Card
Science Fiction
This book is the parallel novel to Ender's Game. Although it is a parallel novel, one would not have to read Ender's Game first to read this book. It follows the same timeline as the character Ender, but in the point of view of Bean. The story first starts off by showing a character named Bean at a very young age in a run down neighborhood in the distant future. Bean, not being just another normal child, survives the harsh life of living on the streets. His intelligence is way above any others and after a while is noticed by a nun who works for the battle school which is where all the extremely intelligent students go to train and fight against the Buggers, which are an insect-like alien race that has attacked the planet Earth twice already. When he is tested to go into battle school, the administrators there think he is cheating because his scores are so perfect. When he is accepted, Bean is even unsure to go himself until he sees this is his only way of living because he has already made enemies on the streets. Bean thinks that his only reason for living is for surviving. When he is in battle school, the administrators make sure he is following up to their expectations and also following in Ender's footsteps. Throughout the story he learns that he is not just a normal human and strives to find out what he exactly is, but in the process he does end up becoming a little more human. Bean also runs through many obstacles, including a long encounter with his arch enemy Achilles whom he was running from before on the streets.
This book is very interesting to read and I even read it myself in a matter of days. It is so interesting because the writing style Card wrote this book in is detailed but also gives you room for creatively to think of everything in your head. The issues the book raises about human feelings are one of the main things the character Bean doesn't realize he is getting, but is slowly realizing he has feelings just like everyone else although he is not fully human. Although he is a genius he still does not realize this until the end of the story. I thought that this book was very well written as well as Ender's Game and although the storyline and timeline were the same, it is actually a whole different story.
This book showed me that anyone can be anything they want to be if they strive hard for it. The feelings that Bean encountered throughout the novel are all a part of being human, in the good times and bad and that there is more to living then just surviving.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bean keeps the story together, July 12, 2001
I read Ender's game about a year ago-I was bored, and it was all a friend had to offer. It was great. I loved it. IO finished it in a day and then left it. Until I was on Amazon.com and I saw this. I read some reviews, and since Bean was always my fave character, I bought it. Not only is this book the most realistic sci-fi book I've ever read, it is also touching and very adventurous. It tells the story of Bean, who was two and suffering on the streets of Roterdam before the brilliance in him emerged and he managed to civilize a whole city before his utter brilliance was noticed. And at four, he was recruited as the youngest to be going to battle school, earning top maeks on the tests that other kids took when they were six.
I finished the book in two hours. It was amazing. Bean is among the most amazing literary figures ever created, among Crime and Punishment's Roskalnikov and Dracula's Count Dracula. He is a character that simply will not let go of your mind. I walked around my house, entranced, with the book glued to my nose.
This book has gotten a pretty bad rep. They're saying Card was just trying to make money off of Ender's Game, the original. I disagree. In fact, I think this book was the better of the two books. Bean was less compassionate, and he didn't act all sappy towards anyone during the whole book like Ender did toward Valentine. Bean was also much more perceptive and intelligent, and he figured out the obvious in the end - but you'll have to read that for yourself.
Not that Bean was the only great character in Shadow. card offered a much more detailed psycho-analysis of Ender through Bean's eyes and also of Bonzo Madrid, commander of Salamander Army and Enders nemesis. It developed the character Nikolai, Bean's only true friend, much better than in Ender's Game, in which Ender saw him merely as another soldier. I'm sorry that Card didn't get Bean to get along very well with Petra or Alai (Ender's other good friends), because it wouldn't have made him look like such a hard-to-get-along-with young boy. Besides that, all the characters were very well analyzed.
If you need a good read, even if you hate sci-fi (I did before Ender's Game, definitly pick up Ender's game. TRhen move on to this book. Even though Card says in his intro that Shadow was made to stand alone, I read Ender's Game again after reading Shadow, and for the full effect I highly recommend reading Ender's Game first.
The only weird thing about this book is the countereffect it has on the reader's impression of Ender's Game. Instead of giving the credit (where credit is due) entirely to Ender Wiggin for defeating the bugger race, all of a sudden we are asked to believe that Bean was the "brains" behind the operation. Obiously, Bean is a great mind, perhaps much greater than Ender, but it casts a shadow on the whole effect of the trilogy to downplay Endeer Wiggin's heroic antics.
It made it unfair that they kept insinuating that Bean should have been commander, Bean is better, the teachers are fighting over him, he writes better papers. Ender is without a doubt the right choice and the book was good enough without making Bean into this super tactician, better than Ender? Ender is the commander, that's that.
Even though Bean is better.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 18 9 10117 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

Details

Ender's Shadow (Ender)
Ender's Shadow (Ender) by Orson Scott Card (Audio CD)
Used & New from: $2.66
Add to wishlist See buying options
Search these reviews only
Rate and Discover Movies
Send us feedback How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you? Let us know here.