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Finally read Ender's Game

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Finally read Ender's Game

Old 07-17-05, 02:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Shannon Nutt
Ender's Game is my all-time favorite science fiction book. Speaker For The Dead is a worthy follow-up, but Xenocide was rather disappointing - so disappointing that I haven't read any of Card's other books that take place in the "Ender" world.
This pretty much echoes my sentiment. I bought Ender's Game while on vacation and read it in a day. Then I bought the next three books in the series. While I didn't like Speaker for the Dead as well as Ender's Game, it was interesting enough and I finished it in two days. Then I began Xenocide, and hated it. I came close to giving up on it several times. It was just a chore to finish. Probably took me two weeks.

I returned Children of the Mind.
Old 07-18-05, 01:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Breakfast with Girls
This pretty much echoes my sentiment. I bought Ender's Game while on vacation and read it in a day. Then I bought the next three books in the series. While I didn't like Speaker for the Dead as well as Ender's Game, it was interesting enough and I finished it in two days. Then I began Xenocide, and hated it. I came close to giving up on it several times. It was just a chore to finish. Probably took me two weeks.

I returned Children of the Mind.
If you didn't like 2 and 3, that was a good decision.

The problem a lot of folks have with Speaker for the Dead is that is SO different from Ender's game. Speaker is a brilliant novel, but it's suited for a more mature reader (Ender's Game can really apply to readers of all age; Speaker really doesn't). Card doesn't hold your hand through Speaker quite like he does through Ender's Game.

I think that as a rule, if you didn't like Speaker, you won't like Xenocide and CotM. Personally, I didn't think CotM was very good either - certianly not up to the high standard of Ender's Game and Speaker for the Dead.

I think 1 & 2 are by far the best. Xenocide is a notch below but still good, and Children is several notches below that.
Old 07-18-05, 01:10 PM
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Originally Posted by kvrdave
The trick to a long thread in book talk is to link to it from Other.
You're welcome.
Old 07-18-05, 03:18 PM
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Originally Posted by mgbfan
If you didn't like 2 and 3, that was a good decision.

The problem a lot of folks have with Speaker for the Dead is that is SO different from Ender's game. Speaker is a brilliant novel, but it's suited for a more mature reader (Ender's Game can really apply to readers of all age; Speaker really doesn't). Card doesn't hold your hand through Speaker quite like he does through Ender's Game.
It stemmed more from the Piggy/virus stuff that I didn't find interesting.
Old 07-18-05, 03:32 PM
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Originally Posted by mgbfan
If you didn't like 2 and 3, that was a good decision.

The problem a lot of folks have with Speaker for the Dead is that is SO different from Ender's game. Speaker is a brilliant novel, but it's suited for a more mature reader (Ender's Game can really apply to readers of all age; Speaker really doesn't). Card doesn't hold your hand through Speaker quite like he does through Ender's Game.

I think that as a rule, if you didn't like Speaker, you won't like Xenocide and CotM. Personally, I didn't think CotM was very good either - certianly not up to the high standard of Ender's Game and Speaker for the Dead.

I think 1 & 2 are by far the best. Xenocide is a notch below but still good, and Children is several notches below that.
Interestingly enough I hated Children of the Mind. When I gave Ender's Game to my girlfriend in college she burned through the series pretty quickly. Children was her favorite. She happened to be a physics major and told me the reason she loved it so much was that a lot of the book was rooted in metaphysics or something.

I just thought it was a bad book.
Old 07-18-05, 09:24 PM
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Heh, I just started reading CotM since I finally finished up the Bean trilogy, and am revisting the Ender side of things (being a completist, and all). So far, after about 100 pages, Card seems to write in a circuitous fashion, and keeps hammering away at points already raised and covered.
Old 07-19-05, 12:17 AM
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Patman - yeah, that's my memory of Children of the Mind as well. That and the fact that you just never give a rip about any of the characters. Entirely forgettable.

One of Card's weaknesses is that he just never seems to know when to leave a series alone. The Homecoming series was subpar, nothing special, but at least the first four books were logical and belonged together. The fifth was a complete non-sequitar, adding NOTHING to the series and really doing nothing to change the resolution of the 4th.

Seems he likes to write his series into the ground.
Old 08-10-10, 05:34 AM
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Re: Finally read Ender's Game

So, five years on, does anyone else have any views as to whether I should crack open my piggy bank and shell out on the spin-off series?

I should say that I found Xenocide very disappointing, having been impressed with the first two books when I read them... way back when.

Maybe those wishing to add to the discussion and who have gone beyond Xenocide could comment on the highs and lows of the successive volumes.
Old 08-10-10, 10:57 AM
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Re: Finally read Ender's Game

If you're talking about the Ender's Shadow series, they're very good. I disliked Speaker and Xenocide enough that I've never re-read them, but the Ender's Shadow series is written more in the tone and style of Ender's Game than its sequels.
Old 08-14-10, 11:36 AM
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Re: Finally read Ender's Game

Originally Posted by JasonF
It's absolutely adored by many people on the internet. I just found it to be OK.
Same here. I much preferred Scalzi's Old Man's War.
Old 08-15-10, 01:35 AM
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Re: Finally read Ender's Game

Yeah, Old Man's War was good (the sequels not so much). But all things being equal, Ender's Game was better ... IMHO.
Old 08-16-10, 11:24 AM
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Re: Finally read Ender's Game

Heh. I bought Ender's Game / Speaker for the Dead in one volume at the local science fiction convention almost exactly a year ago. I read them and enjoyed them. I'm going to stop reading there, because Card's books have the reputation of each being slightly worse than the last.

I thought that Ender's Game was quite a good book, although over-the-top. I'm a little distressed that it's fallen into the category of "books assigned in school because it has a child protagonist." You know that's the main reason kids are assigned big-message books like Catcher in the Rye, Lord of the Flies, and A Separate Peace. But it's not a children's book.

Speaker was a good sequel, although not as excellent as Ender's Game, and it was pleasant to have a more optimistic ending to the story.
Old 08-16-10, 02:28 PM
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Re: Finally read Ender's Game

Loved Ender's game, too bad he didn't write a real sequel and just shoehorned the mythos into another story that no one would have otherwise read (see: Speaker of the Dead).

I also read the first shadow book and it's not even accurate to Enders game, it was ridiculous. They probably edited the book to fix this in later editions but still I was really disappointed when I read that one.

Last edited by SterlingBen; 08-16-10 at 02:30 PM.
Old 08-16-10, 11:03 PM
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Re: Finally read Ender's Game

What were the inconsistencies? I read Ender's Game a long time ago and the shadow book probably 4 years ago, so I don't remember them well enough to pick up on such things.
Old 08-17-10, 03:44 AM
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Re: Finally read Ender's Game

Originally Posted by mgbfan
What were the inconsistencies? I read Ender's Game a long time ago and the shadow book probably 4 years ago, so I don't remember them well enough to pick up on such things.
I read them concurrently awhile back (2nd or 3rd time reading Ender's Game). I don't remember all of them but the one that stuck out was them changing some random kid from Ender's Game who got completely frozen to Wiggin. The original intentions being the kid not being very good and the shadow version being that Wiggin made some game winning sacrifice or some such tripe.
Old 08-19-10, 02:19 PM
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Re: Finally read Ender's Game

I was surprised that Ender's Game didn't do much for me, after hearing such high praise for it. I really just didn't see what the big deal was, and found it all rather dull. That was years ago though, maybe I'll try reading it again sometime.
Old 08-20-10, 03:26 PM
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Re: Finally read Ender's Game

Ender's Game is an admittedly excellent book, but it's a tad overpraised as being some kind of landmark masterpiece of science fiction. I preferred Speaker, didn't care for Xenocide (specifically the inclusion of quantum magic wishing boxes), and Children was unreadable.

I prefered the Alvin Maker tales from OSC, although my favorite of his novels was (and still is) Pastwatch.
Old 08-21-10, 11:19 AM
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Re: Finally read Ender's Game

Originally Posted by DVD King
I liked Ender's Game, but enjoyed Speaker for the Dead more. Couldn't really get into Xenocide, i'll probably give it another chance some time.
I feel exactly the same way, and have had mixed results to Ender-themed/associated books every since...Ender's Game and Speaker For The Dead are two of the best books I've ever read...the others range from very good to not good at all, but those first two were exceptional.
Old 08-30-10, 06:24 AM
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Re: Finally read Ender's Game

Originally Posted by Hokeyboy
my favorite of his novels was (and still is) Pastwatch.
Ditto. Pastwatch: The Redemption of Christopher Columbus is tied for my favorite along with Ender's Game.

I think Xenocide and the other books are readable. They're a different mindset. I didn't like them much when I was younger (late teens), but they're better now.

The Shadow books are a lot more Ender's game-y. They have more to do with future wars and future politics than the Ender sequels, which are kind of metaphysical, reflective kind of books. The only turn off on them was that he got a little overtly preachy about what he thinks is important - having children and family - it got a little old.
Old 09-22-10, 05:31 PM
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Re: Finally read Ender's Game

Originally Posted by SterlingBen
Loved Ender's game, too bad he didn't write a real sequel and just shoehorned the mythos into another story that no one would have otherwise read (see: Speaker of the Dead).
I listened to the audio books of Ender's Game and Speaker of the Dead. At the end of each one, Card reads a postscript where he describes how these books came about.

He was actually contracted to write Speaker of the Dead. But he found that he had to write so much of a backstory as a precursor to get everything set for Speaker of the Dead, he ended up writing Ender's Game as it's own book first.

Although Ender's Game is the more popular book, he thinks Speaker of the Dead is the better book since it has deeper meaning and was the book he intended to write in the first place.
Old 09-23-10, 08:03 PM
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Re: Finally read Ender's Game

Originally Posted by Gambit
I listened to the audio books of Ender's Game and Speaker of the Dead. At the end of each one, Card reads a postscript where he describes how these books came about.

He was actually contracted to write Speaker of the Dead. But he found that he had to write so much of a backstory as a precursor to get everything set for Speaker of the Dead, he ended up writing Ender's Game as it's own book first.

Although Ender's Game is the more popular book, he thinks Speaker of the Dead is the better book since it has deeper meaning and was the book he intended to write in the first place.
I have also listened to the audiobooks. Perhaps you should listen to the ps after Enders Game and Speaker again. They are twisted in either your head or mine (I just listened to the again 6 or so months ago so I am leaning towards yours).
Old 09-24-10, 04:19 PM
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Re: Finally read Ender's Game

Originally Posted by SterlingBen
I have also listened to the audiobooks. Perhaps you should listen to the ps after Enders Game and Speaker again. They are twisted in either your head or mine (I just listened to the again 6 or so months ago so I am leaning towards yours).
Wikipedia leans toward Gambit's recollection:

Originally Posted by Wikipedia
In a commentary track for the 20th Anniversary audiobook edition of the novel, as well as in the 1991 Author's Definitive Edition, Card stated that Ender's Game was written specifically to establish the character of Ender for his role of the Speaker in Speaker for the Dead, the outline for which he had written before novelizing Ender's Game.
Old 09-24-10, 04:45 PM
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Re: Finally read Ender's Game

I just finished listening to them last month and since he was not at all vague in what he was saying, I am 100% sure I do not have it twisted in my mind.
Old 09-24-10, 05:31 PM
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Re: Finally read Ender's Game

You guys are forgetting that Enders game was a short story first. And Speaker was originally written without Ender in it.

I am sticking by shoehorned.

Last edited by SterlingBen; 09-24-10 at 05:36 PM.
Old 09-24-10, 05:37 PM
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Re: Finally read Ender's Game

Originally Posted by SterlingBen
You guys are forgetting that Enders game was a short story first.
I'm not forgetting that, it just doesn't change Card may have said in the audiobook versions.

Was the short story particularly popular or well-known prior to the writing of the novels?

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