Hugo & Nebula Awards: Best Novels discussion

Ender's Game (Ender's Saga, #1)
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Series: Reading Order > *RESOLVED?* Ender's endgame.

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message 1: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new) - rated it 4 stars

Art | 2551 comments Mod
Personally I have read only the first two novels, I remember clearly how much I enjoyed "Ender's Game", first novel in the series and almost as clearly I remember being disappointed by the second novel. However I do not remember what the actual plot was about and at the time I was reading it I never knew that the first three novels were award-winning titles and never even bothered checking the third book out.

Well I kinda wondered if anybody here read the whole thing, which is something like 6-7 books total. Also does it get any better or can we just move tjis one to miniseries and call it quits at 3 volumes?


message 2: by Kateblue, 2nd star to the right and straight on til morning (last edited Mar 25, 2018 11:40PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kateblue | 3667 comments Mod
I've read Ender's Game a bunch of times. I read Speaker for the Dead and Xenocide once, because like you, Art, I didn't like them much. I never paid attention to the series after that and didn't even know until I just checked at https://www.fantasticfiction.com/c/or... that there were even more books in that series.

For years I was disappointed because Speaker for the Dead and Xenocide were so unlike Ender's Game, but then I discovered The Shadow Saga, which follows another character in Ender's game and which gave me what I always wanted--what happened on earth after Ender's Game. I think I read the first three of them. Not sure, maybe I read them all. I really liked the first couple. The first one covered the time period and many of the events in Ender's Game, but from another character's viewpoint. It was great. But none of these are nominated.

So I say, just read the first three, Ender's Game, Speaker for the Dead, and Xenocide, and let the others be at our discretion. I'm probably not really excited to read Speaker for the Dead and Xenocide again, anyway.


message 3: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new) - rated it 4 stars

Art | 2551 comments Mod
Glad to hear that it's not just me, however it is a real shame that the sequels were not on par with Ender's Game. I also am not too enthusiastic about having to read Speaker. I think cases such as this shine bad light on Hugos, since it is as clear as day that it was the original novel that prompted its fans to vote for the sequels, not their own merit. Then again, Speaker was nominated for Nebula if I remember it correctly, so it's hard to say for sure.


message 4: by Kateblue, 2nd star to the right and straight on til morning (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kateblue | 3667 comments Mod
Re Nebulas, obviously, the authors are admiring the concepts in the books and so forth. For example, "The Quantum Rose" is definitely not the best Skolian novel, but it has this kewl literary basis of designing the chapters based on concepts of quantum mechanics. (See my post about order of Skolian books elsewhere).

As I am reading these Nebula nominated books, I think I am beginning to see why they are Nebula nominated books. Or maybe it's all a big popularity contest like the Oscars? Who knows!


Opalears The sequels definitely weren't as good as Ender's Game. I wanted to add that it's weird because I read that Ender's Game was written just so The Speaker for the Dead's story worked. Interesting how it became a classic while Speaker remains as something most people don't even try to read after.

I also agree with Kate, Ender's Shadow was a great book that really added to Ender's game in its perspective. I would recommend reading it if you're not interested in another sequel.


message 6: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new) - rated it 4 stars

Art | 2551 comments Mod
Opalears wrote: "The sequels definitely weren't as good as Ender's Game. "

Ender's Shadow does seem like an interesting read, I suppose I will end up re-reading the first two books and rush through the 3rd just because it got the nomination, after that I might check the Shadow out.

I suppose now is as good time as any to move the whole thing to "miniseries" bookshelf.


message 7: by Kateblue, 2nd star to the right and straight on til morning (last edited Mar 26, 2018 08:05PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kateblue | 3667 comments Mod
My understanding is that Ender's Game was written first as a novella that won an award. And also that it came from the cool idea about the battleroom (or whatever you call it).

Whether that novella or later novel was written to make Speaker of the Dead work, I have no idea.

Actually, I would read Ender's Shadow right after Ender's Game, but there are only so many hours in a day. (So many books, so little time. And if I would quit bingewatching Stargate SG-1, it would help me have more time to read.)


message 8: by Joe (new) - rated it 5 stars

Joe Santoro | 200 comments I thought I'd add to this for posterity.. there is now a novel, 'Ender in Exile' that takes place between Ender's Game and Speaker for the Dead. There's also the short story 'War of the Gifts', which fits in during Ender's time at Battle School.

The Bean books (the 'Shadow' series), are parallel, I'd read them 2nd... you'll care more if you do.

There are also series of prequels, that cover the 1st war with the Formics, but I haven't read those, nor do I have any interest.

It seems I like Speaker for the Dead and Xenocide more than most... I remember reading Xenocide in one sitting the day it was released... My wife woke up at like 3 AM (she was pregnant with my first daughter at the time IIRC), and said 'you're up early... wait, you didn't go to bed, did you?' Good times.


Kristenelle | 286 comments I actually loved speaker for the dead and xenocide. Enders game was really masterful, complete, succinct, and punchy, but I still thoroughly enjoyed the others even if they were more rambly and philosophical. Enders shadow was also good, but I didn’t care for the following books in that series. I was especially disgusted that Petra’s story ended up revolving around wanting Bean’s babies. 🤮 She was a genius military officer too.... Ender in Exile wasn’t that great imo.


message 10: by Oleksandr, a.k.a. Z (new) - added it

Oleksandr Zholud | 3474 comments Mod
I fully agree that both Speaker for the Dead and Xenocide are great books. Sadly, the authors political and social views led to his breakup with the current SFF fandom :(


message 11: by Eva (new) - rated it 5 stars

Eva Yes, I adored Speaker for the Dead and Xenocide - both moved me to tears and made me think. They're more adult than Ender's Game and I actually preferred them. I've also read all the others (Ender's Shadow is brilliant) and totally agree with Kristen concerning Petra's weird obsession with breeding - that's where I stopped reading that series. Card also wrote a beautiful fantasy retelling of Sleeping Beauty (Enchantment), as well as really good and helpful books on how to write SF and Fantasy.

The way I see his political views: he's almost 70 now. He's like a grandpa to me and just like I can love my own grandpa without having to agree with all of his crusty political opinions, I can keep loving Card's books without having to agree with his.


Anthony (albinokid) | 173 comments @Eva does your crusty grandpa argue for the elimination of any and all rights for gay people?


message 13: by Eva (last edited Apr 22, 2020 06:12AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Eva No, neither does Card as far as I know (and I used to be on his mailing list). He is actually very close friends with a gay couple and I can't imagine them visiting each other all the time if he didn't want them to have any human rights.

He's just a Mormon, has crusty Mormon views about their holy marriage (e.g. no divorce, no marriage possible for infertile couples, etc. - not for moral but for religious doctrine reasons you'd probably have to be a missionary to understand (as he was) and he always said he rejects gay marriage on the basis that it would force Mormon pastors to go against their church doctrine when marrying them, not out of some sort of judgment. At least that's how he's always explained his views on the subject in mailings - but that was years ago and don't remember it very well (wasn't interested in his views on this).

I'm a Buddhist and have many views and do things Christians would find kooky, so I'm perhaps more willing to tolerate other people's kooky religious views.

If we're talking tolerating crusty views: one of my great-grandfathers was a monarchist who thought it would be best if the emperor took care of things again just like in the good old days before democracy came and ruined everything. Doesn't mean he wasn't a genius engineer and inventor and a kind and wise man who taught me a lot.


Anthony (albinokid) | 173 comments @Eva to wit:

Suggests married heterosexuals should work to overthrow a government that has marriage equality: "If America becomes a place where our children are taken from us by law and forced to attend schools where they are taught that cohabitation is as good as marriage, that motherhood doesn't require a husband or father, and that homosexuality is as valid a choice as heterosexuality for their future lives, then why in the world should married people continue to accept the authority of such a government? What these dictator-judges do not seem to understand is that their authority extends only as far as people choose to obey them. How long before married people answer the dictators thus: Regardless of law, marriage has only one definition, and any government that attempts to change it is my mortal enemy. I will act to destroy that government and bring it down, so it can be replaced with a government that will respect and support marriage, and help me raise my children in a society where they will expect to marry in their turn."

-- Says gay people's marriages "strike a death blow" against straight people's unions: "So if my friends insist on calling what they do "marriage," they are not turning their relationship into what my wife and I have created, because no court has the power to change what their relationship actually is. Instead they are attempting to strike a death blow against the well-earned protected status of our, and every other, real marriage. They steal from me what I treasure most, and gain for themselves nothing at all. They won't be married. They'll just be playing dress-up in their parents' clothes."

-- In 1990, wrote column saying gays must repent: "The Church has plenty of room for individuals who are struggling to overcome their temptation toward homosexual behavior. But for the protection of the Saints and the good of the persons themselves, the Church has no room for those who, instead of repenting of homosexuality, wish it to become an acceptable behavior in the society of the Saints. They are wolves in sheep's clothing, preaching meekness while attempting to devour the flock." (*In 2004, he said he stands by the main points of the essay)

-- Suggests gays are innately unhappy and that many were raped, molested, or abused into being: "The dark secret of homosexual society -- the one that dares not speak its name -- is how many homosexuals first entered into that world through a disturbing seduction or rape or molestation or abuse, and how many of them yearn to get out of the homosexual community and live normally. It's that desire for normality, that discontent with perpetual adolescent sexuality, that is at least partly behind this hunger for homosexual 'marriage.' They are unhappy, but they think it's because the rest of us 'don't fully accept them.' Homosexual 'marriage' won't accomplish what they hope. They will still be just as far outside the reproductive cycle of life. And they will have inflicted real damage on those of us who are inside it. They will make it harder for us to raise children with any confidence that they, in turn, will take their place in the reproductive cycle. They will use all the forces of our society to try to encourage our children that it is desirable to be like them."

-- In Op-Ed supporting marriage ban in North Carolina, said marriage equality is not about marriage but rather "about giving the left the power to force anti-religious values on our children." Added: "Once they legalize gay marriage, it will be the bludgeon they use to make sure that it becomes illegal to teach traditional values in the schools."

-- Refers to gays as people with "sex-role dysfunctions": "That many individuals suffer from sex-role dysfunctions does not change the fact that only heterosexual mating can result in families where a father and a mother collaborate in rearing children that share a genetic contribution from both parents."


message 15: by Kalin (new)

Kalin | 634 comments Oleksandr wrote: "I fully agree that both Speaker for the Dead and Xenocide are great books. Sadly, the authors political and social views led to his breakup with the current SFF fandom :("

*raises hand* yes, this is me. I have no interest in reading books by assholes.


message 16: by Antti (new)

Antti Värtö (andekn) | 749 comments Anthony: none of those quotes suggest that Card would want to eliminate "any and all rights of gay people". He would want to eliminate SOME rights, but he doesn't say things like "people should be allowed to kill gays without legal repercussions" or anything like that, like your hyperbole would suggest.

I'm not happy that Card is a homophobe, but his homophobia would, indeed, seem to be more on the "crusty Mormon grandpa" level, not "genocidal monster" level.


Anthony (albinokid) | 173 comments This is crusty grandpa rhetoric? Really?

“...I will act to destroy that government and bring it down, so it can be replaced with a government that will respect and support marriage...”

Or this:

“ The dark secret of homosexual society -- the one that dares not speak its name -- is how many homosexuals first entered into that world through a disturbing seduction or rape or molestation or abuse, and how many of them yearn to get out of the homosexual community and live normally...”

“[Gays] are attempting to strike a death blow against the well-earned protected status of our, and every other, real marriage. They steal from me what I treasure most, and gain for themselves nothing at all...”

I humbly request that you not minimize the intent of his words, nor the harm that his words have caused.


message 18: by Gabi (new)

Gabi | 515 comments Plus it is quite a difference if a grandpa in the garden utters such bs or a person of the public life with a fanbase and thus influence.


message 19: by Jemppu (last edited Apr 22, 2020 11:34AM) (new)

Jemppu | 58 comments Gabi wrote: "Plus it is quite a difference if a grandpa in the garden utters such bs or a person of the public life with a fanbase and thus influence."

This. And not just a random utterance, either, but whole deliberate essays about the subject.

Also, regarding Antti's comment: wanting to take away 'all rights' from someone does not equate with approval of killing someone legally. That someone would be 'a okay' as long as they do not condone a murder, is quite a hyperbole in on itself.


Kristenelle | 286 comments I'm sad to hear the extent to which Orson Scott Card has fought against gay rights. :( I knew he was Mormon and therefore against gay marriage, but I didn't know about his activism. Ick. I adored the Ender books years ago, but I've been casually avoiding his books for awhile because of the rumors of his regressive views. I guess I'll make that more purposeful now.

I think a lot of white people are grappling with what to do with all the "crusty grandpas" in our lives. Because we all have at least a few people whom we are supposed to categorize as "good"/"beloved"/"part of our team/family" that are either truly awful people or hold beliefs that are horrendous. We need to stop making excuses for them regardless of how much voice and power they have.


message 21: by Antti (last edited Apr 22, 2020 12:16PM) (new)

Antti Värtö (andekn) | 749 comments It's true that public figures have to think of the consequences of their words more carefully than ordinary folks. Their words have more repercussions.

But obviously Card wants to use his influence to turn back the clock on gay rights, and that's his right. Many authors are also political activists. You or I might not like his politics, but I, at least, don't want to force him to shut up. As long as he's not advocating genocide or other similar things, he has the freedom to use his platform as he likes.

Of course people are likewise free to stop reading his books in response. I personally don't care much whether the author is "an asshole" (as Kalin put it) or not, I just care about the quality of their books. Nevertheless I can understand why other people feel differently, and I can respect that.


message 22: by Oleksandr, a.k.a. Z (last edited Apr 22, 2020 11:49AM) (new) - added it

Oleksandr Zholud | 3474 comments Mod
I think this is an extremely hard topic, my views on the situation evolved over time. When I've read the books I had no knowledge about his views and in the books there were no hints of them (at least I don't recall).

Growing up in the quite conservative Soviet Union, where during the late 80s on tele-bridge with the USA one of women on this side answering the question said "there is no sex in the USSR" (which became a meme) and where homosexuality was a crime up to the end (and therefore almost no open gays) I, as a cis male had no care about LGBTQ+ rights (or even unaware of them).

So, initially it was "who cares about the author's views instead his/her writing" (and I still see that argument as valid, esp. if an author is old). At the same time, while working for NGOs, I finally met some openly gay people and became aware of their problems. However, the country at large is I guess similar in views regarding LGBTQ+ similar to say the USA in the 50s, but outside the Bible belt.

Later it hit me from unexpected side: after Russia annexed Crimea and started war in Eastern Ukraine, quite a few Russian authors actively supported these actions, glorifying them and calling all who opposes them fascists. The list included several famous SFF writers, maybe the most widely translated, so you may have read his in English, Sergei Lukyanenko. I disliked him even earlier, when he actively supported invasion to Georgia in 2008 but I was in minority of local fandom.

Therefore, disliking authors for their views I become more aware how it can be felt by other groups


message 23: by Kaa (new) - added it

Kaa I loved all of the original series and the first Bean book, but was also turned off by the author's views on reproduction that showed up in the rest of the Bean series, and have now stopped reading his work altogether.

I love my grandfather, but we are barely on speaking terms because of his "political" views. I can appreciate someone's role in my life and still recognize that they are toxic and I no longer want that around me.


Kristenelle | 286 comments I'd like to add that I don't have a problem with authors being political activists. The difference for me was whether Card's beliefs were passive or active. Because gay rights aren't just a matter of politics. Gay rights are human rights.

Yeah, how to deal with art from artists with problematic beliefs/actions is a tough question that I haven't figured out how to answer, but I do feel like we can easily just focus on art from other sources, especially minorities. There is no shortage of fantastic books.


Anthony (albinokid) | 173 comments @Antti I would like for you to acknowledge that you minimized the intention and violence of his words. I, by the way, am not trying to “shut him up.” I am trying to hold him accountable by the only means at my disposal, which is sharing his words with others. It is of course up to you to do as you will with that knowledge. But again, there is a gap, I believe, in being generally homophobic and actively campaigning in the manner he has. Also, substitute the terms racist or xenophobic or misogynist for homophobic and see if you feel quite so sanguine about all of it.


message 26: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (last edited Apr 22, 2020 02:08PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Art | 2551 comments Mod
This is a very interesting discussion and everyone is bringing a ton of great insights and points of view.

I personally try to stay away from previews, wikis, author Twitter accounts and the social media noise before I get to the novel in question. Now I do understand that in many cases that ship's sailed and many other readers do not get to pick and choose to which aspects of an author's life they've been exposed to. But that is just a little part of how I see it.

I cannot say that there ought to be a single "appropriate" attitude to have, everyone is free to act on their decisions when it comes to deciding whether to read a book or boycott it.

I suppose that my quarrel is with people blurring the lines. There is the literary work and then there is the author. Reading the work will not make you a terrible person, if it contains unjust passages of racist, sexist or otherwise discriminatory content, it would be more beneficial for a more wholesome human being to read it and then inform the world of the twisted fantasies the author is guilty of.

Hiding in your echo-chamber and read works of people you agree with will not change the world. Challenging the wrongful way of thinking will.

If the book in question does not contain any "tainted" material, should you care whether the author is a "bad" person? Yes, you probably should and then decide whether you want to put on the justice warrior cape and fight the bad ideas of the person you do not agree with.

I however would agree with only one of these statements:

- The author is an evil person therefore the book he wrote carries no value and should be avoided.
- The author is an evil person and he should be supported as little as possible and called out for it.

While I agree that many can decide not to buy any of his work because it supports the author financially and promotes their popularity, I do not think that smearing their work is a productive move. Unless the book promotes the same bad ideals.


message 27: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new) - rated it 4 stars

Art | 2551 comments Mod
Anthony wrote: "@Antti I would like for you to acknowledge that you minimized the intention and violence of his words...-...Also, substitute the terms racist or xenophobic or misogynist for homophobic and see if you feel quite so sanguine about all of it."

Personally I am confused about these two statements.

I agree with you with almost everything else you have to say on the subject.


message 28: by Ed (new) - rated it 3 stars

Ed Erwin | 649 comments Oleksandr wrote: "I fully agree that both Speaker for the Dead and Xenocide are great books."

I loved Speaker for the Dead. Liked it more than Ender's Game. The main idea of Ender's Game was too unsettling for me. Using kids to commit genocide while pretending it is a video game. Not cool. But, then again, if the alien species was likely to kill all humans, you have to do something.

"Speaker..." was more interesting because it dealt with Ender's guilt.

I don't much like Card's politics. The anti-gay stuff from him bothers me, but probably not as much as it does some people. (I am gay, btw.) I went ahead and read another one of his short Ender stories, A War of Gifts, and really liked it. If I had known it was about the so-called "War on Christmas" I wouldn't have read it. But I'm glad I did. It is really good and pretty nuanced. The Christians in the story are not necessarily the good guys.

Anyway, my feelings for the man don't affect my ability to enjoy his stories. But I do avoid supporting him financially by using the library rather than buying his books.


Anthony (albinokid) | 173 comments @Art I have never suggested burning his books. Just to be clear.

I am asking Antti to acknowledge that he minimized the severity of Card’s rhetoric by likening it to a crusty grandpa. I’m wondering whether he would feel quite so sanguine about these matters if it weren’t sexual orientation but another prejudice that were infesting Card’s words. I’m happy to be wrong about this, but I am not sure we would be having such an equivocating conversation about him being a crusty grandpa if his rhetoric was as strong about black or brown people, or women, or foreigners, or whomever else.


Anthony (albinokid) | 173 comments And to be clear, I’m not the one who brought up the subject of Card’s virulent homophobia. I’m simply responding to the minimizing notion that his words aren’t all that bad.


message 31: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (last edited Apr 22, 2020 04:15PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Art | 2551 comments Mod
Anthony wrote: "@Art I have never suggested burning his books. Just to be clear.
"


I never felt as if you have.

Anthony wrote: "And to be clear, I’m not the one who brought up the subject of Card’s virulent homophobia. I’m simply responding to the minimizing notion that his words aren’t all that bad."

Oh, no I do not want you to feel as if you have to be on the defensive here. All the points you brought to the table were well thought out and presented very clearly. That is why I felt that the "thought experiment" about Antti's character seemed out of place.

In any case, whomever did start this discussion does deserves the credit, as well as yourself for posting all the quotes.


Anthony (albinokid) | 173 comments I appreciate that, Art. I remain uncomfortable with the notion that if you’re not advocating for the actual killing of gay people, but you’re using other extremely intense rhetoric about them, you’re simply homophobic and “crusty.”


message 33: by Jemppu (last edited Apr 22, 2020 05:49PM) (new)

Jemppu | 58 comments I have to agree; quite unsettlingly black and white thinking.


Allan Phillips | 1927 comments Mod
I read and/or bought many Card books before I knew about his views and activism. I detest anyone with that type of extremist view toward any demographic. Of course, that covers a lot of ground in today’s political climate, so it’s difficult when it overlaps with family, friends or enjoyment. At some point, I’ll read the remaining books I have to check them off and get rid of them, but his best is way behind him and I see no reason to buy anything more.


message 35: by Kalin (new)

Kalin | 634 comments Art wrote: "There is the literary work and then there is the author."

I'm different from you, Art, in that I like to know about authors whose work I find engaging and insightful; I like being able to understand a little bit what aspects of their lives led to the way they wrote and what they wrote about. Not all authors explicitly write their politics into their books (but all works of art have a politics of one form or another). But I don't believe we can cleanly separate the work from the author, even if there's nothing wrong with reading works from, as Antti quoted me, "asshole writers."

I don't usually enjoy books that I find regressive, and I don't enjoy reading authors whose politics are regressive. But I'm not saying that reading those books makes anyone a bad person, there is plenty of reading "in spite" of disagreements with either in-book or author's-life views. Hell, I've read plenty myself, and it's pretty hard to get through any of the "western canon" without reading racist shitbags: Joseph Conrad, Rudyard Kipling, and on and on.

Recently, the horrible approach to gender politics in Ringworld completely unraveled Ringworld that story for me (well, not completely -- it's a bad book for a lot of reasons). I didn't know anything about Larry Niven before reading, but I wasn't surprised to find he's quite conservative, and apparently his conservative ideas about women found their way into his writing when it probably was never the point of what he wanted to write about. (And I know he's not the only one, there was lots of bad ideas about women in 1960s lit., and in 60s-70s SF, as has been discussed elsewhere in this group).

It might not "change the world," but I'm perfectly happy dismissing some authors because experience has given me the sense that their worldviews are not likely to be crafted into literature that i findvaluable for my own intellectual life journey. So I choose not to read Ayn Rand, Terry Goodkind, Orson Scott Card, or Neal Asher.

Art wrote:
While I agree that many can decide not to buy any of his work because it supports the author financially and promotes their popularity, I do not think that smearing their work is a productive move.


I'm not sure if others have, but I certainly didn't denigrate the quality of his books. I'm not in a position to, having not read them. But it also doesn't matter to me whether the books are good or not, and for all I've heard, the two novels mentioned in this thread are essentially the high point of 1980s SFF. But for me, it's a principle thing: whether or not he's a top-notch writer, I'm not willing to support him, as you said, by increasing his popularity any further.

Another example is L. Ron Hubbard. I was already turned off by everything I knew about him, but after reading the excellent Astounding: John W. Campbell, Isaac Asimov, Robert A. Heinlein, L. Ron Hubbard, and the Golden Age of Science Fiction last year, I'm definitely in the camp of "the sooner we forget about this human's 'literary' works the better."


message 36: by Kateblue, 2nd star to the right and straight on til morning (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kateblue | 3667 comments Mod
Wow! Interesting. And I'm staying out of it.


message 37: by Antti (last edited Apr 22, 2020 10:40PM) (new)

Antti Värtö (andekn) | 749 comments Anthony wrote: "I am asking Antti to acknowledge that he minimized the severity of Card’s rhetoric by likening it to a crusty grandpa."

I think part of the disagreement comes from the image of a "crusty grandpa": I was thinking more along the lines of people who are lovely to their own relatives but whose political opinions are pretty toxic, like what Kaa described above. Hell, my own grandpa used to belong to a quasi-fascist organisation in his youth: he died before I was old enough to really talk politics with him, but I think he was pretty damn racist right to the end.

But mostly I feel like you're forgetting where this discussion started. I wasn't trying to minimise Card's rhetoric: I was objecting to describing Card as "arguing for the elimination of any and all rights for gay people", to quote your words.

If you'd said that Card wanted to eliminate all rights gays had won during the last 50 years, I would've nodded along, because that's obviously what he wants.

But "any and all rights" is quite a different story. If someone advocated for eliminating any and all rights from black people, I'd assume they wanted to reinstitute slavery or wanted to genocide all POCs. "Any and all rights" include things like right to live or right to freedom, after all.

Jemppu accused me of black-and-white thinking, which shows how abysmally I communicated my thoughts, since I was actually originally trying to show there are shades of gray here. I felt like you equated "wants to turn back the clock on gay rights 50 years" with "advocates genocide", and that sounded like black-and-white thinking to me.

I feel like you should avoid hyperbole when describing your political opponents. I've already gone on long enough, so I'll stop here, but you can insert some long rants about the dangers of polarization, crisis of democracy and the like here.


message 38: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (last edited Apr 23, 2020 12:07AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Art | 2551 comments Mod
Kalin wrote: "I'm different from you, Art, in that I like to know about authors whose work I find engaging and insightful; I like being able to understand a little bit what aspects of their lives led to the way they wrote and what they wrote about."

I would like to point it out that in that aspect we are in fact very similar. My original quote was I personally try to stay away from previews, wikis, author Twitter accounts and the social media noise before I get to the novel in question." I never intended to downplay author's influence or the importance of their public views. I look up information on almost every single author from our list after having read their work. That is partially why I made the folder which has a brief introduction about the award-winning authors from our list.

My point was that while I acknowledge that the authors influence the society around them, I prefer to read their work before making up my own (damn) mind about it. Even more so in today's atmosphere where "the boy who cried wolf of prejudice and bigotry" is leaning too heavily on the horn of social media.

Kalin wrote: "I'm not sure if others have, but I certainly didn't denigrate the quality of his books. I'm not in a position to, having not read them."

I did not mean to imply that anyone in this thread has. I was still talking about the subject in general. Usually I would just quote the person whose comment I'm posting about.

Kalin wrote: "But it also doesn't matter to me whether the books are good or not, and for all I've heard, the two novels mentioned in this thread are essentially the high point of 1980s SFF. But for me, it's a principle thing: whether or not he's a top-notch writer, I'm not willing to support him, as you said, by increasing his popularity any further"

That is your choice and that is where our views diverge. While I understand and applaud your idealistic approach, I would hesitate adopting it. Let us move this discussion to a more appropriate thread though, so that we don't lose all of the fantastic points we made in a random Ender's Game thread.


message 39: by Oleksandr, a.k.a. Z (last edited Apr 23, 2020 02:38AM) (new) - added it

Oleksandr Zholud | 3474 comments Mod
I agree with Antti about the shades of grey. The world is complex, and to put labels on something is to simplify it.

While I don't support Card's views, I think I understand them. For him marriage is the sacred union that should literally follow idea of recreation. So, if mundane and temporary gov't tries to broaden it, it is a temporal institution vs permanent soul.

A lot of campaigns are "all or nothing" rhetoric (on both right and left) in my view create opponents were one can have supporters

Kateblue wrote: "Wow! Interesting. And I'm staying out of it."

The wisest choice!


message 40: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new) - rated it 4 stars

Art | 2551 comments Mod
Oleksandr wrote: "
The wisest choice!"


That's one thing we can't be accused of! Hah.


message 41: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new) - rated it 4 stars

Art | 2551 comments Mod
An interesting article Gabi shared:

https://www.wired.com/2013/10/enders-...


message 42: by Oleksandr, a.k.a. Z (last edited Apr 23, 2020 10:57AM) (new) - added it

Oleksandr Zholud | 3474 comments Mod
A general note to all members: we all are different and our opinions are equally valuable. Therefore, I don't think it is a wise approach to call to any member asking her/him to retract/change their position. If one's arguments are persuasive enough that would be done without nudging I think.

Also, such sensitive topics may cause some members to quit, which I doubt is beneficial for the group. Therefore, think twice what you're writing

Thanks! You're all great and let's keep it so!


message 43: by Kateblue, 2nd star to the right and straight on til morning (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kateblue | 3667 comments Mod
I agree with you, Z, about posts. Thank you for stating everything so well.


message 44: by Ed (new) - rated it 3 stars

Ed Erwin | 649 comments Kateblue wrote: "I agree with you, Z, about posts. Thank you for stating everything so well."

Yeah, me, too. Thanks.


message 45: by Ed (new) - rated it 3 stars

Ed Erwin | 649 comments Anthony wrote: "This is crusty grandpa rhetoric? Really?

“...I will act to destroy that government and bring it down, so it can be replaced with a government that will respect and support marriage...” ..."


To me, yes, that sounds exactly like what a crusty old grandpa would say. It is dangerous rhetoric. But note that words that came before that were along the lines of "If the government takes our kids by force and blah, blah, blah...." Well, if the government were really doing that, I might act to undermine that government, too.

Anyhow, If I say more about that, it will be in the dedicated thread.

I'm interested in why this topic was marked "RESOLVED." for reading order, when I'm not sure it was resolved, or even much discussed.

As I said, I read the first 2 in the published order, and one random novelette. For me, that's enough. But for those who want to go further, is there any reason not to use the published order?


message 46: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new) - rated it 4 stars

Art | 2551 comments Mod
Ed wrote: "
I'm interested in why this topic was marked "RESOLVED." for reading order, when I'm not sure it was resolved, or even much discussed...."


This topic is 2 years old. The list if works that we agreed to read as ministries was:

Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card Total pages: 1,298

Ender's Game - 324pg HWBN NWBN
Speaker for the Dead - 382 HWBN NWBN
Xenocide - 592pg HNBN

Does anybody think this should be changed or more titles should be added?


Anthony (albinokid) | 173 comments @Oleksandr you wrote: “A general note to all members: we all are different and our opinions are equally valuable.” I agree to a point, but I want to make it explicit that if members were to express opinions that are directly racist, sexist, homophobic, etc, those opinions should never be considered “valuable.” (I’m not saying any members have done that, I’m just saying we do need to avoid equivocating to our own detriment.)


message 48: by Art, Stay home, stay safe. (new) - rated it 4 stars

Art | 2551 comments Mod
Anthony wrote: "I want to make it explicit that if members were to express opinions that are directly racist, sexist, homophobic, etc, those opinions should never be considered “valuable.”."

That goes without saying. Not only the moderators would not let it slide, members themselves would be able to flag any inappropriate content and have GR intervene.

But so far we've only had one troll and one scammer so far. I personally booted about 60 bots in the last 2 years.

Luckily our members are mature and respectful even during the heated moments. My posts in fact may be as offensive as it gets here.


message 49: by Oleksandr, a.k.a. Z (new) - added it

Oleksandr Zholud | 3474 comments Mod
@Antony, definitely, openly racist, sexist, homophobic, etc, opinions will be dealt with by mods. Thanks for the amendment. However, honest errors should be tolerated if a person is informed about them


Anthony (albinokid) | 173 comments Total agreement, thanks very much. I appreciate your candor and thoughtful engagement.


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