Book Review: Ender’s Game by Orsen Scott Card

Disclaimer:  There will be spoilers in this review!  Not much, and you should still read the book to see what things I left out, but be warned!

A few guys at work suggested I read Ender’s Game.  So, when I found it for the Kindle for 4 bucks I went for it.  I also knew there is a movie coming out in November based on the book.  I love comparing books to movies, mainly so I can complain about how much the movies left out.  Maybe it makes me feel a little smart.

Ender’s game is about a boy named Ender (his real name is Andrew.  It never really explained why he called himself Ender, but it fits him.) who is taken away from his family at the age of six.  He is sent to a school in space to train for a battle against the aliens called Buggers that have invaded Earth twice now.  They only take the smartest kids with the skill to progress quickly, and for some reason they think Ender is the one they have been waiting for.  To them, Ender is the one who will win the Bugger war for good, destroying every Bugger alive.

Ender comes from a family of two siblings, Peter and Valentine.  Peter is cruel and pretends to hate Ender and is always threatening to kill Ender, I think he secretly loves Ender.  Valentine is nice and almost motherly towards Ender.  She protects Ender from Peter’s madness.  I honestly don’t think the parents care too much for Ender either, mainly because Ender is an eyesore to the family.

Families are allowed to have two children each.  (Are we in China?!)  On special occasions a family is granted permission to have a third child, but all for the sake of the war.  So, Ender is pretty much the last resort, and his parents hope and pray that the government will take him to battle school, since the other children were not suitable.  Peter was too mean, and Valentine was too nice.  They were almost as smart as Ender though, and caused a trouble on Earth while Ender was away training.

In the end, Ender beats the aliens without even knowing he had done so.  I will let you read to see how.

My overall score for the book…I will give it a 10.  The plot is genius and unique, and I don’t think anything to day could hold up to it.  It’s probably the first science fiction book I have read, but I will be reading more after this.

A few of my thoughts from the book:

Ender is such a strong kid.  He takes whatever they throw at him and he throws it right back.  He is tough, but he doesn’t intentionally hurt people, it’s just the outcome of others picking on the wrong kid.  He is smart too, and usually outsmarts even the adults trying to control him.

I hated that they pushed Ender so hard.  I seriously wanted to jump into the book and hug the poor kid, and I always rooted for him during his battles.  You kind of know at the beginning though, that Ender cannot be defeated, but in a way he is defeated.  He loses everything, every experience that a child should have.  He should be in a loving home, safe from war.  Everytime he found an inch of happiness, he was ripped away and thrown into a new hate filled environment.

In the end, he did get to fight with the other kids he had gotten somewhat close to in battle school, which I totally cheered for.

The ending sucked!  It was beautifully written and there was really no other option then the way it went, I just wanted Ender to have an awesome happy ending.  I guess he did get somewhat of a happy ending, he got to travel the universe with his sister.

I would suggest this book to anyone.  It was a great book and it had me on the edge of my seat the whole way through.  I will be comparing the movie to the book, and I hope they get something right.  I hear that there is another book after this one, and I want to read it.  I’m really hoping that Ender finds a happy ending that is suitable for all the crap he was put through.

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