Thursday, April 23, 2015

Review ~ Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card

TITLE: Ender's Game 
AUTHOR: Orson Scott Card
TYPE: young adult/ science fiction
PAGES: 324
SERIES:  yes

I sadly watched the movie first and thought it was an interesting idea so I wanted to go back and read the book.

SUMMARY (from Goodreads):
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.

This book took me forever to get through and I am not sure why. It was interesting and at the same time had a lot of technical stuff to wade through. The information about Valentine and Peter while interesting had nothing to do with the main plot in my mind and could have been left out. I actually found those parts easy to skip through and move on. Battle school was the most interesting parts for me and while Command School had some interesting aspects especially the ending (which if you have watched the movie then the twist ending isn't surprising, but alas I won't spoil it for you here) lacked the interesting aspects of Battle School. I think Battle School forced Ender to interact with other children and form attachments or lack of attachments while Command school had no attachments and he was alone for better or worse except for his mentor. 
The ending was a long drawn out affair and left me confused. I liked the twist and I get where the author is going but then he ended up on another planet due to Peter taking over Earth and Valentine going to rule another planet that was a bug planet that he lived on for a long time but yet somehow he is going to help do other things because this is a series (so in a way maybe this is a spoiler review yet not b/c I still don't get the ending). Anyhow be that what it may it wasn't a bad book it just wasn't what I was expecting. I was looking for more action more interaction and maybe a little more grown up things. I think by watching the movie first I came to think of the whole thing as something more condensed then it was which I admit in hindsight was my mistake. That being said was still a good read and one I would recommend to anyone who enjoys space adventures and alien/bug story lines. 

FINAL GRADE: 3 out of 5 stars

Would you recommend this story? Yes while not my favorite I could see how others would enjoy it.

Is this a part of a reading challenge?

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