Ally asked:

Do you have to read the first two in the series to read this one?

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Gal Brenner Just Ender's Game.
Kayla If you read the author notes, he specifically says that Speaker for the Dead was the original story but then he wanted to write some back story to that and he ended up with Ender's Game.

Thus, you don't "need" to read Ender's Game first but you will need to read Xenocide since Speaker for the Dead ends on a cliff-hanger.

I notice that on here it gets confusing as to which book is #1.

I got a boxed set and this is the order:
1. Ender's Game
2. Speaker for the Dead
3. Xenocide
4. Children of the Mind
5. Ender in Exile [although it is set before Speaker it was written after and I guess therefore if you want to read all in chronological order you could move this to between Ender's Game and Speaker for the Dead, but it's not necessary]
Gary I actually read Speaker for the Dead before I read any of the other Ender books. Personally, I like it that way.
The Author's original intention was that Ender's Game would be just a prequel to the trilogy that is Speaker for the Dead, Xenocide, and Children of the Mind.
Speaker absolutely stands on its own merits, and is an excellent book to read.
Ian Swift you dont have to read enders game at all to read the rest of the series.
Smartalec Just read Ender's game because I have actually heard that if you read Ender in Exile before it gives away massive part of the book.
Cody Candler Orson Scott Card actually wrote those two books specifically to offer a foundation for Speaker for the Dead. They give some nice background but you could probably get by without reading the second book.
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