MB (What she read)'s Reviews > Ender in Exile

Ender in Exile by Orson Scott Card
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's review
Oct 03, 2008

really liked it
bookshelves: science-fiction

Very good, I highly enjoyed it. I am glad that the Ender series continues to expand and I hope there is room/scope for at least one more book.

My reflections on reading it:

I felt sorry for Valentine in this book. Her personality was very blah. I hope--if this series continues to grow--that the female characters, such as Val and maybe Jane, will be at least as interesting as the male characters.

OSC has done it before in past books with Petra and, to some extent, Virlomi. It'd be nice to see Val have a personality distinct from and not just supportive to her brothers.

(The rest of this post does not apply ONLY to OSC. But I'm going to use the opportunity to vent a pet peeve here:)

Just my opinion of course, but there is definitely room in SF for more strong female characters who aren't just put in to help move the plot along for the male characters. I'd like to see more of that in future OSC books. Also, puh-leeze, lets get away from female characters whose purpose & status only comes from being mothers, wives (or martyrs)! Not that that is not important, but it is not the ONLY thing in life for women. As a female SF reader, I prefer female characters that are as complicated, nuanced, diverse, and able to take control of their lives to the same extent that the male characters do.)

Authors, please remember: I am female AND I buy books. Please try to make your female characters as interesting as your male characters.
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Comments (showing 1-5 of 5) (5 new)

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Michael I'd be fascinated to see a novel or short story about Valentine. It's been a while and the details of the series have blurred and faded, but did we get a story exploring how she met the man she eventually marries. I'm not saying this is the only story we could or should see, but it's one that immediately springs to mind. Possibly how he's both different and similar to Ender and Peter, two very promiment male influences in her life.

message 2: by MB (What she read) (last edited Dec 01, 2008 03:01PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

MB (What she read) Yes! That is what I was hinting at above! (...Just on the off-chance that OSC reads comments in GoodReads, of course).

Valentine NEEDS a story of her own--as is she now she is a only a supplementary character--just plopped in there to support the "men" in her life. I want her to have a plot of her own where Ender's needs (and Peter's?) are subsidiary to Valentine's for a change. I find the way she has been side-lined annoying.

And, of course, a man up-to-her weight intellectually would be great! Maybe the way Katerina is such a great match for Miles Vorkosigan or Harriet Vane is for Lord Peter Wimsey??? I don't need a romance novel, I just need a good working partnership and two people who complement and complete each other. (Not asking much am I?)

Michael Well, based on Card's other books, I wouldn't expect such a story any time soon.

Tressa MB, you go girl! I have to agree with you. Valentine was a much stronger character in Ender's Game, and I expected more of her in Ender in Exile than to walk around in Ender's shadow. She is integral to Ender's story, but I expected so much more from her and Card.

message 5: by MB (What she read) (last edited Jan 28, 2009 02:47PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

MB (What she read) Oh thanks Tressa! I am a relative newbie to reading SF and the lack of strong women characters bothers me. I know SF has been dominated by male authors and readers in the past. But, I, as a reader, definitely notice the weak female characters (in a newly published book, no less) and they annoy me! Do authors really want to irritate half of their potential readership?

I would hope that, in novels set in the future, there would be "equality" ...whatever that may be.

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