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Earth Afire (The First Formic War #2)

4.01  ·  Rating details ·  9,652 Ratings  ·  716 Reviews
One hundred years before Ender's Game, the aliens arrived on Earth with fire and death. Earth Afire by Orson Scott Card and Aaron Johnston is the story of the First Formic War.

Victor Delgado beat the alien ship to Earth, but just barely. Not soon enough to convince skeptical governments that there was a threat. They didn't believe that until space stations and ships and co
Audio CD, 15 pages
Published June 4th 2013 by Macmillan Audio
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Eric Allen
Jun 06, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Earth Afire
By Orson Scott Card and Aaron Johnston

A Review by Eric Allen

If you wish to skip straight to the review, the beginning will be highlighted in bold for your convenience. Before I begin, allow me to address the elephant in the room. Mr. Card’s rather outspoken views on same sex marriage. Being a fellow Mormon, I am ABHORRED by his recent behavior, and the way he hides behind religion to support his bigotry. Is this not the same man that wrote Speaker for the Dead? A beautiful book that i
Susan Townsend
Added this note a good bit later: I was in a really bad mood when I wrote this review, but the ending really ticked me off. I stand by what I said about not reading it unless you can go directly into the 3rd book (which I still haven't read.) I still think it's not up to the standard I expect from OSC, but it's probably not as bad as the 1 star rating I originally gave it. I'm willing to update that to 2, maybe 2.5. My comments on the audiobook stand! Except that it wasn't Stephen Rudnecki I dis ...more
Nov 12, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, gave-up-on
Congratulations! Another entrant into my "too-bad-to-finish" collection!

This book doesn't offend reason or human decency like some horrors I've confronted (Red Mars, Ringworld, or Ancillary Justice all come to mind), but it's a dull, utterly lifeless work.

The characters? I. Don't. Care. Mazer Rackham was at least interesting because, you know, Ender's Game, but he only showed up for one of the 9 chapters that I read and then did absolutely nothing of note in it other than pose in front of plot d
Michael Hirsch
Ugh. Probably the worst book I've read of Card's. I'd like to think that it is all the fault of the coauthor, because this book has none of the insights and humanity displayed by everything else I've read from Card. The characters are all one note voices. They have one way to react to everything and they never change. The dialog is contrived and completely unbelievable--especially when it is children talking.

There was nothing clever anywhere in the book. There were a lot of really smart characte
May 24, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This novel is why I'm a huge fan of Orson Scott Card - but woe to be the second book of a trilogy. I'm begging for the final installment already!
In this instance, the reader should really read "Earth Unaware" - the first in the Formic Wars series. Several references are made in this novel that would make more sense having read the first book.
Weaving in four plot lines is a dauntless task, but Aaron Johnston and Card do a marvelous job of bringing it all together by the end. Follow the story of a
Kelly Flanagan
Aug 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The mile a minute thrilling second book in the Formic War series. A pre-trilogy to the "Ender's Game" saga. And just as I was helpless to put down 'Ender's Game' as well as the first book to this series "Earth Unaware."
My only suggestion is that these are so good you don't want to stop, therefore wait for book 3 to come out!!
Jessica Lester
Dec 31, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved it. Would read it again. Would recommend to a friend. I'm a huge fan of the universe and enjoyed the story. There are some nit picky things that bothered me, but didn't stop me from enjoying it at all.
Crystal Watanabe
Good added characters and I liked reading about Mazer. The book suffers the most from the cliffhanger ending for me. If not for that I'd have given it 4.
Oct 18, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In love with Lem
Thomas Edmund
Jun 07, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Earth Afire begins immediately after Earth Unaware, Victor is on the Moon trying to convince the world of their impending doom, Rem is out in space continuing to struggle to define himself from within his father's 'long shadow' and a few other characters its hard to care about do some stuff in space.

Afire offers far in terms of futuristic earth, insight into corporate culture, politics and importantly what earthlings think of 'space-born' While I appreciated the effort to create a believable wor
Mar 24, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scifi, library
This one keeps you on the edge of your seat from start to finish. The Formics arrive at Earth and bad things happen. Great characters and 3 different story lines are going on: Victor tries to warn of the impending arrival of the aliens; Mazer Rackham locates to China on a peacetime training mission when the Formics arrive nearby; and the free space miner wives and children who survived the battle of the asteroid belt join up with some space scavengers to survive. I only take a star away because ...more
Jun 06, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the second book in the novelization series of the prequel "Formic Wars" era to the Ender Quartet. Pacing is good and characterization's *not bad*. But the reason I can only give it three stars is perhaps personal preference: Unlike the Ender books, which offered a sense of closure at the end of each of the books of that series, the first two books of the Formic Wars series is not really serial in nature but rather episodic, with cliffhangers setting up each installment of the subsequent ...more
Buck Ward
This is the middle book in the First Formic War trilogy, the prequel to Ender's Game. I read the first book, Earth Unaware, when it was first published, almost four years ago. It was good - lots of excitement - but it left us hanging for the second book. Now that I've finished the second book, I see that this is really a very long novel divided into three parts. If you read it, I recommend that you read all three in fairly close succession. I've immediately started the third book. It continues e ...more
Jun 07, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not until after I finished did I realize I read book 2 of a 3 part mini series. Doh! Being an Ender's Game slut, I will of course read the other two now. This was a good book, but not to the quality of the original Ender books nor the Shadow series.


The book's main failure was the unrealistic nature of most of the characters. It just wasn't believable to me that they would all be so petty in light of the Earth being attacked by aliens.

I thought the book was worth reading for two
Ethan I. Solomon
Dec 21, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
I would again like to take this opportunity to mention that I would love if Goodreads had a 1-10 rating system. If so I would give this book 2 out of 10 stars.

This is the second book in the First Formic War trilogy. If you are expecting any sort of greatness, I would restrain myself. Ender's Game this is not. No grand ideas on philosophy and morals are explored here. Once again, the characters are sidelined for the all too predictable story. An exploration of Mazer Rackham's character is barely
Jun 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is excellent all the way through. I've been waiting for this release after reading the Ender's books, the Shadow series books, and the book before this one "Earth Unaware". It's really interesting to experience the events leading up to Ender's Game and to delve further into the backstories of characters like Mazer Rackim. I also really loved the way the author always paints a picture of the world politics surrounding an event such as an alien invasion. OSC always weaves an amazing tape ...more
Apr 26, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Y paso lo que siempre pasa cuando se lee una saga de la cual se sabe no se podrá leer pronto el siguiente libro, final abierto y el siguiente libro no está en castellano... No es la mejor saga del mundo de Ender pero como entretiene, se dejan a un lado las confusas historias filosóficas y enredos mentales de libros pasados y pasan a contar sin más como es el encuentro y lucha contra los Formicos. Debo aprender ingles ya para por fin leer toda esa lista de libros que no he terminado por no traduc ...more
Andrew Obrigewitsch
One of the better Sci-Fi book written this year, and considering it's also a one of those dreaded Young Adult stories it was actually pretty good. It stands head and shoulders above other young adult books I've read.
Amairany Hoffner
El inicio un poco lento pero pff, ¡es maravilloso!
Lo que más me gusta de Orson Scott Card son sus personajes; son tan profundos y bien hechos. Y la mancuerna que hace con Aaron Johnston es un acierto tremendo.
Todo en este libro es espectacular, con cada página que vas avanzado la tensión va creciendo.
Sin duda este libro se lo llevan Mazer y Bingwen aunque Lem y Víctor no se quedan atrás.
Las precuelas de "El juego de Ender" se equiparan q la grandeza del original (incluso pueden llegar a gustar
Ah. Yet another book by OSC finished. It gives me relief to know there are great writers out there and not just so so ones (even though the so so writers have to be acknowledged all the tremendously hard work they put into their writing). Let us begin by outlining the plot.
Victor, after months on the shuttle, arrived on Luna (the moon, if you couldn't guess) to spread the word of the hostile alien ship. Meanwhile, Bingwen, an eight year old rural Chinese boy who is basically a prodigy, sees a
Alexander Kwok
Jul 03, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: OSC Fans
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 31, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
My comments on the first book in the series, Earth Unaware are still largely true here in the second installment. I was pleased to see that Lem did get a bit more development--still true to the character we saw in the first book, but deepened.

All things considered, Bingwen couldn't help but seem like a sort of precursor to Ender--a child genius who draws Mazer Rackem (who of course will one day be Ender's mentor) to conclude (and I thought the conclusion was a bit forced, actually) that perhaps
David B
May 22, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Formics reach our planet and begin their devastating invasion in China. The nations of Earth are fragmented and ineffective, so it is up to the scattered cast of mavericks we met in the previous novel to begin formulating an effective defense.

I have been mostly underwhelmed by the novels of the Enderverse following “Ender’s Game” and “Speaker for the Dead,” but I am rather enjoying this series. Perhaps it is due to the presence of coauthor Aaron Johnson, but it is nice to take a break from O
Kevin Mammoser
the only real reason this got 3 stars instead of 2 is because I lived reading about mazer and I also love the striking similarity between Graff and wit o'toole. hey authors, a bit of undeserved criticism here, did you know its possible to wrap up the majority of actions in a book series at the end of each book and still have the reader hungry for more? see harry potter, and even your own book enders game. you don't have to leave us in the middle of a gut wrenching scene with no inclination as to ...more
Martin O'flaherty
Ni bien termine de leer Earth Unaware, no pude evitar ir a Amazon y bajarme Earth Afire inmediatamente.

Todavia no ha sido publicado el tercer libro de esta nueva trilogia que desarrolla los acontecimientos de la Primera Guerra Formic, pero la tension alcanzada en este punto es simplemente magistral.

Como buena prequela, sabemos de antemani que vamos a encontranos con una descripcion de eventos que son mencionados en libros posteriores de la saga de Ender, como "The Battle of the Belt" o "The Sc
Jun 11, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
card has accepted a co-writer on this novel and that might be why the read is less fun. the story line is good, but now it reads a little more like a jack reacher "Describe Your Gun" novel than a chapter from the ender universe. unlike ender wiggin, the child hero in this novel doesn't seem as plausible. there's no real reason to believe in his extraordinary intelligence or composure.

i stepped into this cycle in the middle and will go back and read earth unaware just as soon as i get the opportu
Charlotte McKinney
Couldn't put it down

Excellent follow up book in the Formic War series. I can't wait to start the next book. I really love his writing style. I also enjoy the array of characters and how they all slowly come together in one way or another.
This started out slow, but finally got more interesting toward the end. I won't be deterred by how boring it was at times, as I'm interested in how this war unfolded.

I like the foreshadowing regarding Battle School.
Sam Schneider
Again, a decent story if you're an Ender fan. Not on par with OSC's earlier work, but better than a lot of the post-Ender books. All 3 in this series are about the same in terms of entertainment and quality. (Take it out of the library. Don't need to own it.)
Aug 27, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fast read. I like the unlikely heroes.
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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 First Formic War (3 books)
  • Earth Unaware (The First Formic War, #1)
  • Earth Awakens (The First Formic War, #3)

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“If you wait until you know everything, you never do anything.” 1 likes
“Bingwen didn’t argue. What good would it do? When adults became defiant in public, no amount of evidence, however irrefutable, would make them change their minds.” 0 likes
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