Title: Ender’s Game written by Orson Scott Card
Genre: Science Fiction, Children, YA
Published by Tom Doherty Associates, LLC
Page Count: 324
Rating: 5/5, it was amazing! Couldn’t put it down! I want to shout it from the top of a mountain!
Goodreads 2013 Reading Challenge #3
I received Ender’s Game as a gift this past Christmas from a close friend of mine who highly recommended this book. I had heard of Ender’s Game before, namely in my textbooks from both my Media for Children and Media for YA classes I took this past Fall 2012 semester. I must say that after reading mostly ebooks for the past few months it was exhilarating to be holding a paperback in my hands again and I’m always up for a good Sci-Fi book.
This is the story of a boy named Ender Wiggins whom is the third child in his family during a time when families are typically allowed to have only two children due to population control. I was kind of confused on this at first (correct me if I’m wrong!) but families are pretty heavily monitored to track how many children they have and also to identify specific traits that would later translate to military prowess. Each Wiggins child has garnered interest from the government, but after the first two showed promise but failed to meet the expectations of the government the family was tasked to provide another child who turned out to be Ender who shows incredible promise from the start. This is so important for the government to do as we learn early on in the book that humans have already faced two invasions from an alien race known as, the Buggers. This program ensures that we have the best possible army lead by the best possible leaders. They are on the lookout for the one leader that will lead them to ultimate victory.
Ender gets plucked away from his family at the age of six and is sent to attend battle school where he will learn what it takes to be a soldier…in his case though his superiors are hopeful that he has what it takes to be their commander. With seemingly impossible challenges always facing him in the battle games held at the school between the different armies, Ender, although one of the smallest soldiers in the school never fails to rise to the occasion. This garners him much respect among his superiors and peers, as well as much derision.
After being promoted to commander of his own army for the games, Ender succeeds in beating all the other battle teams and overcomes any and all challenges thrown his way in the games, no matter how difficult or challenging with innovative strategy and technique. After getting promoted at a very young age to commander school (an honor typically bestowed upon the most promising sixteen year olds at battle school), Ender starts training to command the entire human fleet in the war against the buggers. Just like at battle school, Ender trains through games where he holds controls in his hands, sees the screen before him and can communicate with his team through voice over a headset. Little does Ender know that these aren’t games at all. After winning victory for the human race and wiping the buggers out of their home planet, humanity branches off into space and colonizes the buggers home world. Ender, having become one of the people to settle down on the bugger home world is conflicted with having been the one responsible for this.
This seems like a lot but there is actually more to the book that I can’t even begin to describe. As it is, I feel like I haven’t given the story enough justice. I loved this book and it was one of my highly anticipated reads for my 2013 Goodreads Challenge. I was not disappointed. I am also reading this just in time as well, as the movie is due to be released this year. I looked around for a trailer to accompany this post but alas, there was none to be found (at lease where I was looking) so let me know if you come across it. Sidenote: For those of you that have read the book, I am SO excited that Ben Kinglsley is playing Mazer Rackham (Ender’s mentor at Commander school) I think it’s a perfect perfect fit. The great thing is the story doesn’t end with this book, there are plenty more books in the Ender’s Game series as well as two comic books based on it. I was also reading that there had been a video game in the works called Enders Game: Battle Room but that it got put on hold indefinitely. Boo! I’m convinced that would have been nothing short of awesome. This is definitely a must read, especially for sci-fi fans. This is appropriate for older children and teens too, which is always a plus.