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Ender's Game (The Ender Quintet) Mass Market Paperback – July 15, 1994
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A Reading Guide for Ender's Game.
THE ENDER UNIVERSE
Ender's Series: Ender Wiggin: The finest general the world could hope to find or breed.
Ender's Shadow Series: Parallel storylines to Ender’s Game from Bean: Ender’s right hand, his strategist, and his friend.
The First Formic War Series: One hundred years before Ender's Game, the aliens arrived on Earth with fire and death. These are the stories of the First Formic War.
The Authorized Ender Companion: A complete and in-depth encyclopedia of all the persons, places, things, and events in Orson Scott Card’s Ender Universe.
Intense is the word for Ender's Game. Aliens have attacked Earth twice and almost destroyed the human species. To make sure humans win the next encounter, the world government has taken to breeding military geniuses -- and then training them in the arts of war... The early training, not surprisingly, takes the form of 'games'... Ender Wiggin is a genius among geniuses; he wins all the games... He is smart enough to know that time is running out. But is he smart enough to save the planet?
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Top customer reviews
This book perfectly tells the tale of Ender Wiggin, a young child, at the start of the story, who has been bred to be, and is, "humanity's last hope". Despite this, however, the book does not dwell on the impending peril, but instead focuses on Ender's experiences and growth as a person. Personally, I found/find it impossible not to love the kid, and to both relate to and respect him. I found all of the characters believable and sympathetic.
The introductions to each chapter are an excellent literary tool, and work perfectly in this book. Additionally, the further characterization of Peter and Valentine (Ender's siblings) adds so much to the book and the world Card creates. Every time I read this book, I have a different favorite part and a different favorite character. Depending on my mood, there is always someone for me to relate to and empathize with.
In later years, I have learned more about he author (which, in this case, is not a good thing), but it is really a testament to how amazing this book is and how successfully he wrote these characters that Card's own actions and reputation have not marred this book for me. Whatever I think of his personal beliefs and politics, he wrote an amazing book, and one that I think everyone should read (probably best around ages 9 - 14 for the first reading, I have been told that it is not *as* good/life-changing if you read it as an adult).
The book is about a world that was changed by an alien atack, and the children that are meant to save it. One particular exceptional child: Ender Wiggin. But the book is about so much more. It's about inocence lost and hope found, it's about how much of our identity is bound by the actions we are obligated to take in do-or-die sitiations. It feels real. All the cruelty and all the kindness feels utterely human. But since it's about all the "action" that happens inside of Ender, and not so much about the real action, the book felt slow and over-explained to me sometimes.
But I recomend it to anyone, even people who have seen the movie.
Typically, I am not a fan of the science fiction genre; as I have always been more drawn to unicorns and elves than aliens. Surprisingly I can feel Sci-Fi diverges far more from reality than Fantasy ever does. (Perhaps I have completely misunderstood the genre.) Ender Wiggin drew me in from the start. While it is a story of war and personal struggle up in space, I felt the novel really got to the heart of the matter with an epic twist at the end. You connect with the characters and their motivations. You bleed for their sorrows. The addition of an alien race just reconfirms the struggle to understand the human condition instead of detracting into unreality. While written by a LDS author, it is not overly heavy in the religious propaganda but moral dilemmas and the human struggle to understand more than ourselves are presented. I think that is what I love about the LDS church the most. The overall acceptance that there is more to religion than the doctrine and rites presented at face value, but an understanding deep down inside each of us. Ender struggles to find himself in the face of terrifying circumstances and unreasonable pressures. Definitely look forward to this being a movie and a video game. This is definitely a series that holds a lot of promise from the first book. In the junk of pop culture and fly-by-night trends today, we need to focus on the intelligentsia with substance and moral backing to get our feet again.
In lieu of a plot synopsis, I think the review should be reasons why the reader should actually pick this book up and read it. If you like science fiction, the book reads incredibly well - and has enough technology and science elements to engross the reader of fantasy. If you like deep novels that make you think, the book will not fail to provide fodder for thought around communications, control, education, moralism, social engineering and relativism. For the reader who enjoys military or action novels, there is plenty of material to entertain and make you think.
The movie will undoubtedly not do the book justice. The imagination, the twists, the turns, the depth of thought and the emotion of the ending are going to be difficult to build to or explore deeply enough in a 120 minute commercial film. If you like the movie (I haven't seen it), do yourself a favor and pick up this incredible novel. If you like good literature, do the same thing. Even if science fiction isn't your genre, Ender's Game transcends genre to poignant literary experience.