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First Meetings: In Ender's Universe (The Ender Quintet 0.5)

3.81 of 5 stars 3.81  ·  rating details  ·  9,117 ratings  ·  461 reviews
Welcome to the Enderverse.

When Orson Scott Card first published "Ender's Game" as a novella in 1977, few would have predicted that it would become one of the most successful ventures in publishing history. Expanded into a novel in 1985, Ender's Game won both the Hugo Award and the Nebula Award for Best Novel. Never out of print and translated into dozens of languages, it i
Audio CD, 0 pages
Published September 1st 2004 by Macmillan Audio (first published July 1st 2002)
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I loved reading the background stories to Ender's Parents, but was sad when their story stopped so abruptly. They barely have one good day together, and it's like Paul Harvey steps in with his famous tag line, "and now you know the rest of the story". I wanted more, and felt robbed. Then the story quickly jumps (no transition) to a portion that seemed to have come straight out of Ender's Game, only there were discrepancies. There's a discrepancy with Graff's character and his age(within this boo ...more
When this first came out, I was a little miffed at old Orson for dragging out the highly successful and (to me) hallowed Ender saga for one more flogging, so I refused to read it. However, somehow it wound up in my possession (as book-shaped things are wont to do), and I'm glad I gave in.

I've always felt that Card had at least two very interesting and valuable talents: one is creating fleshy, breathy characters (in a good way), and another is having interesting ideas about all sorts of things,
Let me preface this review by saying that Ender's Game is my favorite book and has been for almost 20 years. As such Orson Scott Card is one of my favorite authors, First Meetings, a collection of meetings of primary charters in the Enderverse is a good example of just how good of a writer Card is. Oddly I had thought I had read the book already but when I picked it up I realized it was made up of several short stories, some of which I had yet to read. The book is made up of "The Polish Boy", th ...more
Andreea Daia
Quick and dirty reading notes and (i)relevant thoughts
(For my first "review" under this logo, there are going to be fewer reading notes and more thoughts, since I found something very vexing about this collection of short stories.)

Although this is listed as the first book in the series, I'm glad I read it only after Ender's Game and Speaker for the Dead. The stories range from 40 years before to 300 after the events from Ender's Game and they would be utterly confusing to a new reader.

The fi
Ender's Game fascinates me. I always go back and back and back to it. I've heard from many different people, all sci-fi lovers to varying degrees, their opinions on Orson Scott Card's Ender series and the majority of these folks caution me not to waste my time reading further into the series - reportedly the books grow weaker and lean more heavily on the past books.

Here's the thing though - I'm not finding that to be true at all. They're riffing off each other, sure. But that's the best part! I
A collection of interesting but frivolous stories set in the Enderverse. Find out why Ender's father immigrated to America. Find out how Ender's parents first met. Find out how Ender hooked up with Jane. And read the story of ENDER'S GAME back before it got fleshed out into a novel.
Or don't. Because these stories aren't necessary to fully understand and enjoy the rest of the series. Still, fans of the Enderverse will find FIRST MEETINGS a treasure trove of world-building.
Melissa (ladybug)
There were a few discrepancies in this book compared to the Books Ender's Game and Ender's Shadow.

(view spoiler)

Otherwise this was a very enjoyable book of four novellas. I loved l
Chad Warner
May 30, 2015 Chad Warner rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Ender's Game
Recommended to Chad by: John Kaashoek
This collection of four fun short stories about Ender and his parents gives interesting background info. The stories are pretty good, but too short to really get into. Still, they're worth reading for any Enderverse fan.

The Polish Boy
This is about six-year-old John Paul Wiggin in Poland. There’s a lot of talk about government and religion. (view spoiler)
Just read this again last night! My favorite short story in here is "The Investment Counselor" where we first encounter Jane. She is awesome and the comeuppance of Benedetto is particularly sweet. I love the Enderverse!

Read 11/2013
I'm torn between wishing I'd read this book prior to Ender's Game, and being glad that I mistakenly read it afterwards. I enjoyed the additional information and had I read it before Ender's Game, I might have been confused as to what was going on. There are also parts of this novella that happen during other parts of Ender's Game, so knowing how those scenes played out was helpful. I'm finding that I am very intrigued by Ender's Universe and can't wait to keep reading more.
Emperor Allyster
I'm in one of those I-don't-actually-give-a-fuck states after reading not-so-interesting stories, so forgive me for my indifference if you actually liked this specific novella.

Note: This doesn't actually spoil the second book for you, hence it's book #1.5 in the saga. The first two chapters happen before the time Ender's Game takes place, the third chapter is a quick recap of its second half, and the last is the filler between its ending and the beginning of Speaker for the Dead.

This book novell
Adam Heine
I'm not sure why I avoided this book for so long. I think because I'm not a fan of short story collections. But the stories in this collection are not random; they're not old short's by Card that happened to occur in Ender's universe. They're connections. They tie together various threads in the series that I didn't even know were loose.

There are four stories. The first two give backstory to Ender's parents, their own genius, and even their connection with Graff and the IF. The third is the orig
Aug 15, 2007 Dan rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Ender's Game
There were four short stories in this book. One story about Ender's Father's first encounter with the International Fleet Officer Graff, who runs the battle school. One story about when Ender's parents met. One story about when Ender met the artificial intelligence program Jane. And the original ender's game story.

All the stories were well written and entertaining. Also, they lent more depth and history to Ender's Universe. The Short Story version of Ender's Game is worth reading to compare and
I actually listened to the Audible version. This is a good introduction to the Ender Universe, although most people would probably prefer to read it after the series, since all of the stories contained here are spread througout the series.
We see hear how Ender's father manipulated the government to get what he wants. We get to see how Ender's parents first meet, and how they may have been manipulated to produce Ender. We see Ender as a young man, just coming into his majority with the responsibi
Ender's Game is one of my all time favorite books, and I enjoy Orson Scott Card as a writer in general because of how often he gets me to think while reading, so when I found First Meetings on my sister's bookshelf, I was excited to read it. The first two stories, "The Polish Boy" and "Teacher's Pest", were everything that I expected...believable characters (at least for the Ender universe), good plot, and plenty of thinking points brought along by the combination. As an Ender fan, I loved getti ...more
As much as I appreciated the stories, you can live without them.

Polish Boy: How when Ender's father John Paul was a young child the I.F. came for him. I see a lot of similarities between John Paul and Ender. But I also feel like in Ender's Game, the dad was no longer as bright and intelligent. He was being played by Peter and Valentine which doesn't seem to align with the character portrayed in this short story.

Teacher's Pest: How Ender's father met Ender's mother. Literally only about the singl
I liked "The Polish Boy," and I'd already read and enjoyed "Investment Counselor" in another collection (though I think it does re-write some of the main characters' histories a bit). "Teacher's Pest," however, irritated me quite a bit. I liked and admired Ender's parents in the series proper, but I found John Paul insufferably smug and condescending in this story. And Theresa just...gave in to it! The story took two characters I admired and made me really dislike them both.
Ryan T. Howard
The first two stories are great preludes to Ender's game. "The Polish Boy" really just told how Ender's father was a child genius just as much as Ender was, maybe even more. This kind of felt too perfect. I don't think every child character should be made out to be a genius. Card should have at least tried to show varying degrees of child geniuses.
The second story, "Teacher's Pest" shows how Ender's parents first meet. I think this is the best story in this collection, but it was cut short befor
The Thousander Club
Jumping back into the Ender universe is a little like going home. First Meetings in the Ender Universe is the tenth book I have read in the series, and I still remain committed to reading each book Orson Scott Card has to offer from this universe. The series itself has had its ups and downs, some great and some not so much, but I'm invested and interested enough to see the series to its end. First Meetings is a fine addition to the overall series and provides some welcome depth to the universe.

"Ender's Game" has been one of my favourite books for many years. And it is the start of what is probably my favourite series. These stories add depth to some of the lesser characters in the series.

The first story is about Ender's father at roughly the same age that we first meet Ender. The next is about the first meeting of Ender's parents. Both are well written and enjoyable stories and you can see where their kids get it from. And that's my problem. I just can't see these two as the virtual n
Inspired Kathy
My 100th book this year! I loved this book. I've come to totally love Orson Scott Card's books in the Ender's series. This was 4 short stories including the original short story Ender's Game and then we got to meet Ender's Father as a child, find out how Ender's parents met and how Ender first met Jane. Fun reading for any Ender fan.
First Meetings is a very good collection of four short stories located within the Enderverse. All four stories proved to be enjoyable reads, especially the first two that gave background on Ender's father, John Paul Wieczorek. "The Polish Boy" shows his life as a genius child growing up in the non-compliant nation of Poland while "Teacher's Pest" details the first meetings between John Paul and his future wife. The story "Investment Counselor" is about Ender and takes place after his exile from ...more
This book features three unrelated stories from Ender's universe. while the stories of the Enders parents and Jane are interesting, a large part of the book is devoted to something like an early draft of Ender's Game which is full of inconsistencies, different character names and in my opinion should not have been published.
I enjoy the books from the Ender series, but this one can be skipped.
Update - I just read the book description and it seems that the third chapter is actually the original
Geoff Long
Although I really enjoyed the stories centered around Jane and Ender's parents, I agree with the general consensus that those should have been fleshed out more. These could have been books in and of themselves, and the short story on Ender's game could have been completely dropped. This was simply a worse, shortened, version of Ender's Game. If I hadn't read Ender's Game it would have been fine, but it has several discrepancies that, to someone who has read the other books in the Enderverse, wil ...more
Von Sowards
A sign of a good write is when the writer creates back ground for story and characters that never makes it into the final cut of the books. It must be agonizing sometimes as a writer to have all this story that you feel so proud of but get no recognition for.

"First Meetings" is a hodgepodge of odds and ends stories by Orson Scott Card involving the Enders universe.

I found a lot of fun in this book! The stories truly gave more me more insight into characters like Ender's parents and Jane.

Levent Mollamustafaoglu
This book has two stories narrating the plight of Ender's father as a child in Catholic Poland. He is the son of a family with 9 children. Due to the two-child policy applied by the Hegemony, his father can not have proper work and all but two of the children are not allowed to go tot school.

The stories are interesting for Ender fans. They are followed by the original Ender's Game story and then one more story looking into the time Ender and his sister Valentine are in flight from the Earth sinc
I thoroughly enjoyed the short stories in this collection. They give lots of interesting backstory to various characters. The novella version of Ender's Game was kind of weird though. It was like reading a memory of a book. The Buggers are never mentioned; they're referred to as "the enemy" only. Valentine and Peter aren't mentioned. Most of Ender's friends in Battle School don't exist. Heck, a fair bit of the trauma he endures at school doesn't happen. It isn't bad. It just feels incomplete, es ...more
Geoff Paulson
The strength of some short stories countered by the weakness of others in this collection. The most disappointing being the story of how Ender met Jane.
I really liked hearing about Ender's parents. In the Ender stories Ender and his siblings don't thin their parents know anything that was going on in their children's lives, but there is a hint that maybe they were more aware than their kids thought. After reading this, I am pretty sure they knew more than their kids thought they did. (I'd be curious to read a short story from the parents' perspective about what their kids were up to.) I also really liked hearing about Ender's first meeting with ...more
I would not recommend this book as an entry point into the Ender series. If you want to start the series begin with Ender's Game and then follow up with some of the other stories. This book was a little confusing as it begins with John Paul, Ender's father, as a child and then continues his story as a young man falling in love with Ender's mother. I was very intrigued with this back story and loved seeing Ender's parents as people rather than distant non-authority figures. Unfortunately, their s ...more
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Goodreads Librari...: Page numbers 2 171 Feb 11, 2014 04:51PM  
Goodreads Librari...: change description request 2 16 Aug 21, 2013 03:07PM  
Follow-up Books 1 13 Aug 18, 2013 08:31PM  
First Meetings in the Enderverse 3 26 Mar 23, 2013 06:48PM  
  • Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show
  • City of Time (The Navigator Trilogy, #2)
  • Voices in the Dark (The Last Descendants, #2)
  • Samurai (Simon St George #2)
  • To the Blight (The Eye of the World, #2)
  • The Wind in the Willows
  • Winter Door (The Gateway Trilogy, #2)
  • Ender's Game: War of Gifts
  • Deadly Relations: Bester Ascendant (Babylon 5: Saga of Psi Corps, #2)
  • Sophie's Secret (Sophie, #2)
  • The Dragon in the Driveway (Dragon Keepers, #2)
  • Catwalk (On the Runway, #2)
  • Ender's Shadow: Command School
  • Driving Blind
  • When the Snow Fell
  • The Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year (Volume 2)
  • Other Earths
  • The Basilisk’s Lair (Nathaniel Fludd, Beastologist, #2)
Orson Scott Card is the author of the novels Ender's Game, Ender's Shadow, and Speaker for the Dead, which are widely read by adults and younger readers, and are increasingly used in schools.
Besides these and other science fiction novels, Card writes contemporary fantasy (Magic Street, Enchantment, Lost Boys), biblical novels (Stone Tables, Rachel and Leah), the American frontier fantasy series Th
More about Orson Scott Card...

Other Books in the Series

The Ender Quintet (5 books)
  • Ender's Game (The Ender Quintet, #1)
  • Ender in Exile (The Ender Quintet, #2)
  • Speaker for the Dead (The Ender Quintet, #3)
  • Xenocide (The Ender Quintet, #4)
  • Children of the Mind (The Ender Quintet, #5)

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