(The Ender Quintet #1)
Orson Scott Card
In order to develop a secure defense against a hostile alien race’s next attack, government agencies breed child geniuses and train them as soldiers. A brilliant young boy, Andrew “Ender” Wiggin lives with his kind but distant parents, his sadistic brother Peter, and the person he loves more than anyone else, his sister Valentine. Peter and Valentine were candidates for the soldier-training program but didn’t make the cut—young Ender is the Wiggin drafted to the orbiting Battle School for rigorous military training.
Ender’s skills make him a leader in school and respected in the Battle Room, where children play at mock battles in zero gravity. Yet growing up in an artificial community of young soldiers Ender suffers greatly from isolation, rivalry from his peers, pressure from the adult teachers, and an unsettling fear of the alien invaders. His psychological battles include loneliness, fear that he is becoming like the cruel brother he remembers, and fanning the flames of devotion to his beloved sister.
Is Ender the general Earth needs? But Ender is not the only result of the genetic experiments. The war with the Buggers has been raging for a hundred years, and the quest for the perfect general has been underway for almost as long. Ender’s two older siblings are every bit as unusual as he is, but in very different ways. Between the three of them lie the abilities to remake a world. If, that is, the world survives.
Ender’s Game is the winner of the 1985 Nebula Award for Best Novel and the 1986 Hugo Award for Best Novel.
So many people give this book a lot of praise and now that I received the box set for my birthday I finally got the chance to see what all the fuss was about. And I’m very happy that I did because I absolutely loved this book. It was very different from all the books that I’ve read previously and it just blew me away completely. If I hadn’t been so busy with life I really would have finished this book a lot faster because it really got its hooks in me good. Seeing as I now own the complete box set I doubt that it will be long before I pick up the sequel. But in a way it’s also a bit daunting because I have no clue what the sequel is about and I just don’t know if it can top Ender’s Game. I sure hope it does, but how will that happen though? Story-wise I just have no idea what the sequel will hold and that simultaneously excites me and scares me a little, because reading a sequel that doesn’t measure up is a very disappointing event.
The characters in this book were very special and not run of the mill at all. But that didn’t stop me from loving all of them in their own way. All of them just brought something new and fresh to the story and that was just amazing to read about. Ender with his extreme intelligence isn’t one of the most standard protagonists/antagonists, but that just made me like him more. Although I did keep forgetting what his age was, but then it would be mentioned or become apparent trough his emotions and it would just faze me a little bit. And though we don’t really get to meet most other characters in the same detail that we do ender, it really just helps to layer this story. These other characters’ view on things helped shape the world in which this story took place.
I hadn’t heard a lot about the story before I picked up the book and this allowed me to be surprised by the story. It was a nice change after reading a lot of books I’d heard so many things about, before I even decided I would read them. Of this book I’d only heard how great it was and how people should be reading it. And guess what, people were right, or perhaps it is more correct to say that I agree with the people who were saying those things about this book. The book never got boring and it never became predictable. These two qualities really made this a treat to read and I enjoyed every second of it.