Matt's Reviews > Ender's Game

Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card
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Jan 31, 08

Recommended for: everyone -- i'll even buy you a copy!

i think 'ender's game' is the only book i've read three times. for me books often don't have repeat reading value in the same way some movies have repeat viewing value. it's probably because a movie takes two hours of your time while a novel, for me, takes a week or longer. so for someone like to me read a novel twice, not to mention three times, is really saying something [and yes, i realize the inherent snobbery in that statement].

i've thought long and hard about what makes 'ender's game' so appealing. it's got a sympathetic protagonist, lots of great action, lots of heart, and a plausible twist of an ending. on those merits only 'ender's game' works. it's a lot of fun to read and orson scott card manages to inject some really moral and ethical quandries without resorting to didactism or heavy-handedness. for example, the manipulations of the battle school powers-that-be are presented and inspected, but card never explicitly paints them as the enemy. they are who they are, for better or for worse, but it's up to the reader to for his or her own opinions. same for ender and his merry band of castoffs. card understands that good v. bad is never as simple as black v. white. the world and universe are, more often than not, varying shades of gray. and the folks who inhabit that gray universe, for better or for worse, are who they are. they all have a part, they all have a purpose--even if those parts and purposes contradict each other.

'ender's game' is also a great story of the value and importance of friendship. i choke up everytime ender's friends great him over the headset and the kids prepare for the final 'battle.' who wouldn't want friends like bean, petra, hot soup and the rest? i sure would.

but i think the real appeal for 'ender's game' comes from the belief that we all want to believe that there's something uniquely special about us. i think it's safe to assume that most of us have, at one point or another, felt like the underdog, the castoff, the misfit, the misunderstood, or the underappreciated, and that if people would just give us a chance, we'd shine. in that way ender is very much a universal character. he embodies a small part of each ous. yes, he is treated unfairly and manipulated, but he's also the smartest kid in the room. there's something very appealing about that. at least there is for me. whether or not i'm the smartest person in the room is irrelevant, but i want to believe it. and whenever i read 'ender's game' there's a small hope that it just might be true.
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Comments (showing 1-10 of 10) (10 new)

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Bentley Great point in the last paragraph... I think that's a big reason why Dune is so popular as well.


message 2: by Noelle (new) - added it

Noelle you'll even buy me a copy? ok! ;)haha the book sounds super good though, I will definitely read it!


Kenyon I find your review a relief from some of these hateful reviews by people who don't understand the book. I agree with everything you said, although if you have only read this book three times you need to read books more often. I have read this book sixteen times and counting.


message 4: by Hilary (new) - added it

Hilary Well, you convinced me to read it! If only I didn't have so many books waiting in line to be read, I would start it tonight!


Irene I think the reason why Ender's Game is so appealing to people varies for different people, but it is more or less the same.


Rebecca Carlsen I have just finished this book and just reading your line about hearing his friends over the headset has just made me all emotional again!


Michelle I'm with you! This is the only book I have read repeatedly. It's always amazing


Alina I'm going to read this again for sure now! :)


Chelsea I loved your review--it spoke my exact feelings. I agree with Rebecca--that moment when he hears his friends on the headset was amazing! I relived it again in your review. Definitely a favorite book. Loved it. Thanks for the great review.


message 10: by Joni (new) - rated it 1 star

Joni Willis-varble You are dillusional


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