Ender's Shadow (Ender's Shadow, #1)
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Ender's Shadow (Ender's Shadow #1)

4.28 of 5 stars 4.28  ·  rating details  ·  86,423 ratings  ·  3,566 reviews
Welcome to Battleschool.

Growing up is never easy. But try living on the mean streets as a child begging for food and fighting like a dog with ruthless gangs of starving kids who wouldn't hesitate to pound your skull into pulp for a scrap of apple. If Bean has learned anything on the streets, it's how to survive. And not with fists. He is way too small for that. But with b...more
Paperback, 469 pages
Published May 19th 2002 by Starscape Books (first published October 1st 1998)
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Ender's Game by Orson Scott CardDune by Frank Herbert1984 by George OrwellFahrenheit 451 by Ray BradburyBrave New World by Aldous Huxley
Best Science Fiction & Fantasy Books
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Ender's Game by Orson Scott CardDune by Frank HerbertThe Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams1984 by George OrwellFahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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4.0 to 4.5 stars. Okay, now don't turn away thinking that this book is just a "re-telling" of the story of Ender's Game from the perspective of the character of Bean. Not at all. This is not simply OSC cashing in on the success of the Ender Series. This is a completely different novel and there is little to no overlap in the actual events of Ender's Game. It simply takes place at the same time as those events.

The purpose of this story is two fold. First, we get to really know Bean who turns ou...more
Seak (Bryce L.)
Very impressed with how good this was. I count myself in the party that there shouldn't have been anything past Ender's Game (like The Matrix and most any sequels Hollywood makes nowadays), but I have to admit this was great.

As a parallel novel to Orson Scott Card's classic Ender's Game, Ender's Shadow follows Bean, the kid Ender treats like the teachers treated him.

While hesitant to pick this up, I had heard that the Shadow series is better than the original quartet, but I couldn't get away fro...more
Nicholas Karpuk
Jan 02, 2009 Nicholas Karpuk rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Strategy Nerds, Nerds, Risk Enthusiasts (Nerds), Angry Dwarves, and Sci Fi Enthusiasts
When I read a description of a book summing it up as a retelling of a story from a different perspective, I groan internally and my interest wanes slightly.

Ender's Shadow follows those exact lines. We switch from Ender's perspective to Bean's, the brilliant dwarf child who serves under his command.

What shocked me the most was how much more I preferred Bean's perspective. Ender grew up with a loving family and had a generally conventional outlook for a genius. Bean functions as a direct contradic...more
Kat Kennedy
I personally found that I enjoyed Ender's Shadow more than Ender's Game.

Perhaps because I found Bean, as a character, more relatable in how he analyzes and views people and the world in general. He also felt more real as a character in that he is awkward and clueless and greatly flawed.

The pacing for this book is a little less smooth in comparison to Ender's Game. The plot, on the other hand, is a little better as you have a greater insight into the background workings of Ender's success. Graff...more
This is the simplified version of Ender's Game for the kiddie set that can't handle rich characters with moral ambiguity, moral introspection, and character growth.

Card does great work teaching people how to re-imagine stories from different viewpoints and with different motivations in his workshops. It's a shame that he didn't demonstrate it here.

Instead, we get Bean (a great character in the original story) as a classic Mary Sue, a wish-fulfillment character with all of Ender's skill but none...more
March 2010
Previously: Ender's Game

Ender Wiggin, hero of Earth, did not defeat the Buggers Formics single-handedly. He had help. Soldiers, followers, people in the background, unimportant characters whose own stories didn't really need to be told, you know where I'm going with this, etc. etc. One of these soldiers, Bean, was smaller than Ender, younger than Ender, infinitely smarter than Ender...

...and not nearly as interesting.

But that didn’t stop Orson Scott Card, so here we go: Bean, an orphan...more
Kyle Johnson
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This book was definitely not as good as Ender's Game. The best parts of Ender's Game were the action parts, and also the parts where Ender would be faced with a problem and he had to come up with a clever way to fix it. But in Ender's Shadow, Bean is the main character and he tends to be much less subtle than Ender. He also spends an absurd amount of time thinking, just thinking and thinking. It's like... dude. STFU! Maybe if he thought about interesting stuff, but he spends most of his time thi...more
Almost everyone I talked to about Ender's Game, told me I should read Ender's Shadow, it's just as good, if not better. So naturally, I was super pumped to get my hands on Card's retelling of one of my favorite tales. Instead, however, I found that after the first couple chapters, it was getting harder and harder to read the book without wanting to chuck it out the window.

Here are the main reasons why this book drove me completely bananas and caused me to finally abandon it 200 pages in:

1. The...more
This book tried really hard to ruin Ender's Game for me. The premise of the book is that Ender wasn't really the hero of his own book, but that his course was manipulated and prodded onward by an even greater genius, in the form of Bean, a member of Ender's army.

Bean had a brutal upbringing on the streets, and somehow ended up in Battle School, where he takes over the computer system and runs everything by the time he's six. He ensures that Ender ends up saving the world -- without his help, En...more
Ender's Game:
There's this really, really smart kid, see, and he's lonely, and he has to do really hard stuff, and adults are mean.

OK. I can get with that.

Ender's Shadow:
Oh, but I forgot to mention, there's this OTHER kid, who's even smarter, like really, really, REALLY smart, and he's also even lonelier, and he has to do even harder stuff, and the adults are even meaner.

Give me a break. Yawn. I think Card is great but this is just ridiculous. I read Shadow of the Hegemon but quit after that.
This book made me wish I could forget that I had ever read Ender’s Game.

Not because it was necessarily a better book – though it is longer – but because the two books offer different views of the same events from two distinctly different perspectives.

Ender Wiggin is brilliant and empathetic, a boy torn apart by his own doubts and fears and driven to greatness by a government that sees him simply as a means to an end. It is only his ability to understand and come to love those around him that ge...more
Apr 15, 2008 Tamra rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Ender's Game fanatics
I am ashamed to admit that I've never finished the Ender's Game original set. But I did read Ender's Shadow, which I think most people really liked. I didn't mind it, but I have some serious reservations.

First, the original story is better. This re-telling isn't near as fun. It takes longer to get to the GOOD story, though it is interesting to see the background on this kid.

Most of what I disliked, though, is that this re-interpretation is NOT what Card originally had in mind when he wrote Ender...more
With all honesty, I don’t know what to say right after I finished this book. The book never failed to impress me as it failed my first impression. Yes—my first impression. The fact that I didn’t read yet the Ender’s Game series made me hesitate in pursuing reading the Ender’s Shadow. Credit to Orson Scott for initializing the reason why should I read the book through his well written foreword. Another thing, I’m not deep into novels which set above the earth—or in other words, the outer space. G...more
Feb 07, 2009 Annalisa rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who's read Ender's Game
Recommended to Annalisa by: Michelle
I think I may have like this better than Ender's Game. Maybe I wouldn't have liked it at all if I had read them back to back or had read it rather than listened to it, but trying to remember the sequences in Ender's Game as I read them from a different perspective was interesting. I enjoyed seeing the story from the one training just in case Ender fails. Bean's impassionate analysis vs Ender's emotional turmoil. The kid you don't quite like at first because he's too self-confident in his intelli...more
I found it fascinating how Card used this as a parallel to Enders Games. He was able to take my favorite character from Enders Game and tell the same story from a much different and more interesting perspective. This novel follows Bean from early childhood up through the ranks within battle school and command school. I would suggest reading this book AFTER you have read Enders Game.
I was blown away by Ender's Shadow. I was surprised that a re-telling of Ender's Game from Bean's perspective could be so enjoyable. I loved Ender's Game more after reading Ender's Shadow as it added a depth and new level of understanding to circumstances I thought I already fully grasped. I tip my hat to Orson Scott Card for this brilliant display of story telling. Love it!
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Chris Friend
Feb 05, 2008 Chris Friend rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Everyone. That's right.

I just cried while listening to an audio book. Even more amazing is that this book was the re-telling of a story I've already read, only told from a different perspective. Orson Scott Card is amazing. I'm now looking forward to the other books in the shadow series.

The audiobook was, like all others in this terrific series, fantastically well-executed. Full-cast reading, but no audio effects. Nothing is done to cheapen the conveyance of the story, but oh so much is done to elevate it beyond m...more
Apart from a cynical exercise in money-making by stoking the wallets of obsessed fans, I can't think of a reason for why this book exists. The underlying flaw is that it seeks to shed light on a series of questions and situations that are simply uninteresting and unnecessary. Who knew from Ender's Game that there were hidden decks in the Battle School? Who really cares. Finding out that Dragon Army was actually intelligently put together and wasn't just full of a bunch of dopes? Wonderful? I gue...more
Jul 03, 2012 Maria rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Maria by: Rollie
I recommend Ender's Shadow.


I cannot believe it's been five months since I read Ender's Shadow and I have yet to write its review like, right now. It's not as much as I could not put my coherent thoughts in place, but perhaps it is hard to give justice to the brilliance of Ender's and Bean's story.

Bean is a freakin' genius. In Ender's Game, he wasn't much of a favorite because he barely registered in my radar while reading it. Imagine me getting a little surprised that a parallel book was wr...more
Jan 25, 2009 C rated it 2 of 5 stars
Shelves: for-fun
I'm sure I won't be alone in saying that perhaps I'm just partial to Ender's Game and, let's face it, Ender, but this book was ultimately disappointing. It was as if, in order to make Bean into the genius he supposedly was, he had to knock Ender down a notch, make him not as good as he seemed before. Perhaps this is a mature, intelligent evaluation of Ender and his strageties, and yet it felt like simply the only way to up Bean. I mean, when you've made one character seem such a supreme genius,...more
When I first heard Orson Scott Card had written a parallel story to Ender's Game, dealing with virtually the same events as the original book but told from another character's perspective, I thought it was a cheap way to cash in on the success of his first bestseller. Like many people, though, I had to eat my words after reading Ender's Shadow. For not only is it as gripping a read as Ender's Game, but in some regards it is actually a better book.

Ender's Shadow centres on one of Ender's lieutena...more
Kathy Bowman
I'm going to review the whole Shadow Series as a whole instead of rating each book individually. I had a difficult time enjoying this series. It was partially psychological--I really liked the Ender's Game series, and had a hard time seeing it in a different light. Other people may not have this hang-up. But my main problem is that this is written in later-Card style. His style has become a lot of dialog, almost like you're reading a play, and it's very hard for me to throw myself into sheets of...more
Sarah Reynolds
I really enjoyed this book! I wasn't initially thrilled about the idea of a parallel to Enders Game, but this was very well done. It gave a lot of back information to the story, and told it all from the perspective of Bean, whose story is way more complex than Enders Game ever hinted at. I love the world of these stories so visiting it again was great. I could almost say that I enjoyed this one more than Enders Game, but it's definitely very close. A great read overall. Loved it
Mike (the Paladin)
This edition comes with a forward by Mr. Card in which he expresses the opinion that his "later books" in the Ender series are "better" than the first "Ender's Game" but that the first book is action packed, adventurous, and has a boy as main character, so it appeals to younger readers. Thus the greater sales etc. are due to the number of younger readers. Well, I suppose that is part of it. But, even though Mr. Card is the writer, I must "on the whole" disagree with him. The first book is just.....more
Jan 23, 2012 Relyn rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommended to Relyn by: Jeffrey Lawson
Orson Scott Card attempted (and achieved) the near impossible. Twelve years later he went back and wrote Ender's Game from the point of view of another character. Several times in the book, the same exact event and dialog take place, but from an entirely different perspective. Powerful! Interesting.

I already mentioned that I woke up thinking of Bean and Ender. These two books are incredible.

I am excited to be listening to this book again. It's marvelous. Yup. It's official, I prefer End...more
Ender's Shadow is the same story as Ender's Game, its just from a different perspective. Ender's Shadow is about a boy named Bean who has been living a confusing and hard life on the streets. His life soon changes when the IF accepts him into Battle School because he is extremely smart.
If you enjoy action, adventure, drama, and mystery you'll love this book, because it has all of that and more. I enjoyed this book greatly, and I loved reading it. I would most likely recommend it to friends tha...more
Inspired Kathy
Loved this retelling of Ender's Game from Bean's perspective. For anyone who enjoyed Ender's Game I would highly recommend this book.
It really pains me to give an Orson Scott Card book only a 2 star and maybe it is really a 2.5 star book. This book really doesn't live up to Ender's Game...at all! In fact it is down right boring at times. Bean was one of my favorite characters in Ender's Game, but in this book he comes off as whiny and envious and not really that likeable at times. He is smarter than everyone else and he knows it, but he is very envious and jealous of Ender throughout most of the book and that just doesn't com...more
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Atterberry Englis...: Enders Game from another view. 1 5 Mar 04, 2014 12:04PM  
SPSV Mrs. Rodgers...: Kyle Soriano 1 4 Dec 05, 2013 09:54PM  
Rae Gun Ramblings...: Ender's Shadow Talk (book 2) 1 13 May 07, 2013 01:44PM  
  • Ender's Game, Volume 2: Command School
  • Ender's Shadow: Command School
  • The Last Colony (Old Man's War #3)
  • Foundation and Earth (Foundation, #5)
  • Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show
  • The Dreaming Void (Void, #1)
  • Dune Messiah (Dune Chronicles, #2)
  • Young Miles (Vorkosigan Omnibus, #2)
  • Metal Swarm (The Saga of Seven Suns, #6)
  • The Battle of Corrin (Legends of Dune, #3)
  • Field of Dishonor (Honor Harrington, #4)
  • Brightness Reef (Uplift Storm Trilogy, #1)
  • Humans (Neanderthal Parallax, #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
More about Orson Scott Card...
Ender's Game (The Ender Quintet, #1) Speaker for the Dead (The Ender Quintet, #2) Xenocide (The Ender Quintet, #3) Children of the Mind (The Ender Quintet, #4) Shadow of the Hegemon (Ender's Shadow, #2)

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