Title: Ender's Game
Author: Orson Scott Card
Publisher: Starscape 2002
Genre: Science Fiction
Rating: 5/5 stars
Reading Challenges: Science Fiction; 2011- With a Twist
In order to develop a secure defense against a hostile alien race's next attack, government agencies breed child geniuses and train them as soldiers. A brilliant young boy, Andrew "Ender" Wiggin lives with his kind but distant parents, his sadistic brother Peter, and the person he loves more than anyone else, his sister Valentine. Peter and Valentine were candidates for the soldier-training program but didn't make the cut—young Ender is the Wiggin drafted to the orbiting Battle School for rigorous military training.
Ender's skills make him a leader in school and respected in the Battle Room, where children play at mock battles in zero gravity. Yet growing up in an artificial community of young soldiers Ender suffers greatly from isolation, rivalry from his peers, pressure from the adult teachers, and an unsettling fear of the alien invaders. His psychological battles include loneliness, fear that he is becoming like the cruel brother he remembers, and fanning the flames of devotion to his beloved sister.
Is Ender the general Earth needs? But Ender is not the only result of the genetic experiments. The war with the Buggers has been raging for a hundred years, and the quest for the perfect general has been underway for almost as long. Ender's two older siblings are every bit as unusual as he is, but in very different ways. Between the three of them lie the abilities to remake a world. If, that is, the world survives.
My first recommendation from J for science fiction was a success. The story was inventive (at least for me). The characters were interesting. The setting was gorgeously described and constructed.
The entire story seemed familiar to me through the book. When I mentioned it, J said that it was the beginnings of the world from Stormship Troopers... ahhh that 's makes sense now. I could see the similarities in the worlds. But this one focuses on a boy, his siblings, and the search for a fleet commander. The story progresses slowly, but it's interesting. I usually like faster moving plots. This one covers almost 5 years of Ender Wiggins' life. We see his home life. We see his traveling to BattleSchool. We see his trials at BattleSchool. And we see his entrance into the next steps of his training. Although I never completely agreed with Ender's actions, he was a very interesting character. I loved his contradictions and struggles. It was hard to remember that he was a little boy. He seemed to be at least in his teens. Very strange how Card writes a character so young, yet with a soul and mind so old. Definitely an interesting combination.
Good choice for book selection. Stumped as what to read next.
- #1 Ender's Game
- #2 Speaker for the Dead
- #3 Xenocide
- #4 Children of the Mind
- #5 A War of Gifts
- #6 Ender in Exile