Tina's Reviews > Ender's Game

Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card
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's review
Oct 21, 2010

it was amazing
bookshelves: gifts, sci-fi, 2012, ya, tfg-100, best-2012
Recommended to Tina by: Too many people :)

Original post at One More Page

So everyone who's ever read and loved science fiction has read and loved Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card. My friends who have read and loved science fiction also were true to their responsibility to push this book to everyone, particularly people who are curious about the said genre. Particularly, me.

But a little commercial first: I've always thought that I never read any science fiction book in my entire reading life. But it turns out, one of my favorite young adult series growing up was science fiction: Animorphs by K.A. Applegate. Five kids and one alien with the power to morph into any animal they touch against an alien race of parasite slugs set to invade the world? If that is not science fiction, I will eat my hat.

And so Ender's Game. It was duly recommended, but for some reason a copy eluded me until my friend Monique found one for me. Of course, as luck would have it, I end up seeing copies of the book everywhere after I got the copy. But anyway! Of course, it takes me another year to read it, but I don't really think it matters now.

The Wiggin children, Peter, Valentine and Andrew aka Ender, were all candidates for the soldier training program in their childhood, but only the youngest, Ender, makes the cut. Ender has always been distant with his family so joining Battle School wasn't much of a difference in his young life. Ender's skills made him a leader in Battle School, admired and hated at the same time by his classmates. But Ender's brilliance in the Battle Room had a price -- isolation, loneliness, and the fear that he is becoming like his older brother who he despises. But there are secrets around Ender's training, secrets that could very well mean the survival of the human race in a war against an alien race for the last hundred years.

Here's one thing about Ender's Game: it's so readable. I'm initially apprehensive of reading science fiction (and high fantasy) novels because I'm afraid of not being able to fully immerse into the world. If it's not very obvious yet, I'm really a contemporary reader and most of the books I read are set in the real world, so reading something set in a different world, or set in the future is quite a challenge for me. Orson Scott Card made Ender's Game very accessible, though, and it was easy enough to understand what was happening in Ender's world. Oh, I didn't really understand much of how the Battle School worked, or the space travel later into the book, but I had a pretty okay grasp with it early in the story, so reading it slowly became a breeze.

I loved the military set-up over the sci-fi aspect. People say this is really more of a military novel, and I kind of agree with that. Reading this reminded me of those Citizen Army Training days back in high school, where we'd practice rifle drills and do other activities during camp, like Search & Destroy and Escape & Evade (I hate the latter, btw). I liked reading about the strategies and the platoon (toon) set up and the promotions. I love reading about the war games in null gravity -- it made me wish that laser tag games here were done in the same environment! I would probably be the first to be frozen in that, but it would be so much fun. It was fascinating to see how Ender came up with strategies to confuse his enemies in the games and wonder at how he was able to see it and make it work. And there isn't just the military thing either. The political aspects of war -- in space and on earth -- were discussed, too, and it makes readers see that some well-placed words said (or written) on a platform can be enough to start a war. A bit of suspension of disbelief might be in order for the part of the novel is needed, but if you can believe that a six year old is the hope of the world against an alien race, then believing that part should be easy enough.

Poor Ender, though. I keep on forgetting that he was just a kid (six years old at the start of the novel) as the story progressed. He always seemed older, especially with all the military school talk. Ender's fighter qualities were admirable and oftentimes scary, but it was hard not to root for him in the story. I sympathized a lot with Valentine, Ender's sister, with how she cared for him because I wanted to take care of Ender too, and keep him a kid longer because he deserved to be one. I also liked Ender's friends, too, especially the ones who were with him at the end. There was this one particular scene that really made my heart swell with happiness for Ender that involved his friends, and it shows that true friends are those people who are with you in your darkest hours.

There is a fair amount of violence in this book, so a fair warning to those who think that this is about some kids who get roped into a "save the world" thing. Even more horrifying is that these are just kids beating each other up. Despite that, Ender's Game is pretty, well, darn good. I know I'm not a credible judge of science fiction since (like I said) I barely read the genre, but I think Ender's Game is science fiction at its simplest and maybe at its finest, too. It's no wonder why people kept on recommending this to me. If you're a newbie to science fiction and you're looking for titles to start with, then listen to everyone who has recommended this book to you because trust me: they are right about it. If it's not enough, then let its awards push you to the right direction. Also, a movie is coming out next year. Enough reasons? Get a copy and remember: the enemy's gate is down! :)
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Reading Progress

October 21, 2010 – Shelved
December 26, 2011 – Shelved as: gifts
March 20, 2012 – Started Reading
March 21, 2012 –
page 16
4.94% "Why do we read fiction, anyway? ... I think that most of us, anyway, read these stories that we know are not "true" because we're hungry for another kind of truth: the mythic truth about human nature in general, the particular truth about those life-communities that define our own identity, and the most specific truth of all: our own self-story. - from Orson Scott Card's intro in my copy :)"
March 21, 2012 –
page 28
8.64% ""You're a monster."
"Thanks. Does this mean I get a raise?"
"Just a medal. The budget isn't inexhaustible.""
March 23, 2012 –
page 75
23.15% "..."Maybe they in a hurry to teach you everything."
"They don't want to teach me everything," Ender said. "I wanted to learn what it was like to have a friend." (p 69)"
March 24, 2012 –
page 176
54.32% "Trying to finish this as fast as I can."
March 26, 2012 –
page 224
March 27, 2012 –
page 324
March 27, 2012 – Shelved as: 2012
March 27, 2012 – Shelved as: ya
March 27, 2012 – Shelved as: sci-fi
March 27, 2012 – Finished Reading
April 9, 2012 – Shelved as: tfg-100
December 26, 2012 – Shelved as: best-2012

Comments (showing 1-14 of 14) (14 new)

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Rollie I can't wait for your review!

Reminder: The enemy's gate is down! :D


Rollie Of course! Ender's Game is the right book to start with if going to try SF. Yey!

Alexa I've been trying to look for a decent copy of this book for so long, but it's proven elusive. 3 Because of this review, though, I feel more inclined to look for it again! Great review, Tina! :D

Tina Alexa wrote: "I've been trying to look for a decent copy of this book for so long, but it's proven elusive. 3 Because of this review, though, I feel more inclined to look for it again! Great review, Tina! :D"

Book Sale usually has this! But if you can't find it, I usually see copies in Fully Booked and National too. :) Last time I remember, Fully Booked Eastwood has one copy, you can call them and have it reserved/transferred. :)

Alexa Tina wrote: "Alexa wrote: "I've been trying to look for a decent copy of this book for so long, but it's proven elusive.

Book Sale usually has this! But if you can't find it, I usually see copies in Fully Boo..."

Really? Yay, thank you very much!

PS I keep forgetting that GoodReads has no like button pala for replies 3 If there is, though.. LIKE! ^_^

Tina LOL, Goodreads should have that! :D You're welcome, hope you find a copy. :)

Aaron Vincent Fullybooked Gateway has copies too. Try looking for it on the SF shelves and YA SF shelves.

TINA: Read Pathfinder next! HA!

Alexa It's a couple of train stops away from school, so I'll try to look there too. Thank you! :)

message 12: by Tina (new) - rated it 5 stars

Tina Aaron: Hush. Too many books, too little time. Haha sometime this year. :P

Veronica Just about to start reading this...i am quite excited!

Ceecee There's gonna be a movie for this?! Deym, I want to read this before the I watch the movie. haha!

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