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Ender's Game [Mass Market Paperback]

Orson Scott Card
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,757 customer reviews)
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Book Description

July 15 1994 The Ender Quintet (Book 1)
Winner of the Hugo and Nebula Awards

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.

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Product Description

From Amazon

Intense is the word for Ender's Game. Aliens have attacked Earth twice and almost destroyed the human species. To make sure humans win the next encounter, the world government has taken to breeding military geniuses -- and then training them in the arts of war... The early training, not surprisingly, takes the form of 'games'... Ender Wiggin is a genius among geniuses; he wins all the games... He is smart enough to know that time is running out. But is he smart enough to save the planet?

From Publishers Weekly

For the 20th anniversary of Card's Hugo and Nebula Award–winning novel, Audio Renaissance brings to life the story of child genius Ender Wiggin, who must save the world from malevolent alien "buggers." In his afterword, Card declares, "The ideal presentation of any book of mine is to have excellent actors perform it in audio-only format," and he gets his wish. Much of the story is internal dialogue, and each narrator reads the sections told from the point of view of a particular character, rather than taking on a part as if it were a play. Card's phenomenal emotional depth comes through in the quiet, carefully paced speech of each performer. No narrator tries overmuch to create separate character voices, though each is clearly discernible, and the understated delivery will draw in listeners. In particular, Rudnicki, with his lulling, sonorous voice, does a fine job articulating Ender's inner struggle between the kind, peaceful boy he wants to be and the savage, violent actions he is frequently forced to take. This is a wonderful way to experience Card's best-known and most celebrated work, both for longtime fans and for newcomers.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I Wish I Could Give It 6 Stars Feb. 28 2007
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I'm not a huge fan of s-f, but I have a very wide range of favorite authors/books. My favourite authors range from Tom Clancy to Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn; Chuck Palahniuk to Michael Chrichton. This book is, bar none, my favourite book ever. I first read this book 13 years ago when I was 12 and I reread it at least once a year. It is a brilliant look into the inner workings of extremely gifted children that becomes a heartwrenching portrait of a boy whose intense compassion for his enemies is both his greatest advantage and his most self-desructive personality trait. When I first read this book, it was so engrossing that it kept me, a 12 year old boy, inside for 3 days during the summer at my cottage on Lake Huron. The book was in my hand non-stop until I turned the last page. If you haven't read this book, shame on you and fork over ten bucks for the best damn read you'll have this year!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Enders justify the means Feb. 24 2014
Ender Wiggin is a very unusual boy -- he's a brilliant tactician, a genius, and a despised "third" in a future that only allows two children. He's also six years old.

And despite the fact that Orson Scott Card's sci-fi classic is about a little boy learning how to be a warrior, "Ender's Game" is a pretty gripping and sometimes grim adventure story. The descriptions of children being taught out how to be cold-blooded warriors is pretty creepy, but the well-developed future world that Card comes up with is pretty awesome.

After a fight with a gang of bullies, Ender Wiggin is approached by an army officer who wants him to join the elite Battleschool, where kid geniuses become soldiers -- basically because aliens are about to attack Earth AGAIN and may end up wiping out the human race. His brother Peter is too wild and cruel, and his beloved sister Valentine is too mild-mannered.

Ender accepts, and quickly finds himself in a dog-eat-dog space school where he soon becomes loathed for the special treatment the teachers occasionally give him -- when they aren't observing his every move. And it soon becomes obvious that Ender has a natural ability that exceeds that of most of the Battleschool recruits: he instinctively knows how to outmaneuver his opponents and protect himself in a fight, even if he annoys some of the "army" commanders who don't like being outshone.

Back on Earth, his brother and sister try to alter the increasingly unstable politics of Earth by subtle manipulation of the public, a situation that may bring the ruthless Peter into greater power. And as Ender reaches the end of his training, he faces both the buggers and the knowledge of what he is capable of.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rightfully considered a masterpiece Feb. 19 2006
For years I've wanted to read this book; it is considered one of the classic works of SF. Recently I did, and surprisingly enough, I wasn't disappointed.

It tells the story of Andrew Wiggin, the Third child of a family living in a future, overpopulated world where families are restricted to only two offspring; except where traits of extraordinary intelligence in the youngsters leads the government to believe that a budding military genius might be in the offing, one who can lead the armies of the Earth in a hopeless battle against a ruthless Alien species. Andrew, nicknamed Ender by his loving sister Valentine and despised by his sadistic brother Peter, shows so much promise that he is whisked away at the tender age of six to an orbiting Battle School by military men unsure whether he will even survive the training, let alone actual battle.

While author OSC maintains a sparse descriptive style with the surroundings, he concentrates on filling out Ender into a living, breathing person of many facets who we feel deeply for as he is thrown into a grinding military program out to wring the last bit of humanity from him.

I loved how easily this book read, while at the same time presenting some serious ethical issues and allowing us to truly enter the mind of a child progeny and experience his arduous journey along side him. I'm not the only one as well; my wife, curious as to what was keeping my nose in the book for long stretches at a time, perused the first few pages and then delved headlong into the book right behind me. I ended up fighting for reading time just so I could finish before her!

Ender's Game is a terrific read; being touching, rollicking, and insightful all at the same time.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Before considering reading this, I think that one should
look to Norman Spinrad's review of it as it appeared
in Issac Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine. Failing that,
at least realize that the entire book is a deliberate
button-pushing saga, following the patterns of human
mythology that are older then history, in a completely
manipulative way. Read Frank Herbert and you'll see that he
wants to show the emptiness of the Messiah complex; Card
celebrates it. Herbert wants to explore what humanity is
about; Card wants to explore how much money it has.
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By Jennifer Cameron-Smith TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Mass Market Paperback
'Or at least as close as we're going to get.'

The central figure in this novel is Andrew `Ender' Wiggin, a six year old boy, born into a future world which has already suffered two invasions from a species commonly known as the buggers. Ender is monitored by the military for years before being recruited to join an elite group of children in training at battle school. Their mission? To protect the world against another invasion by the alien buggers.

Ender is viewed by the military as the one most likely to succeed and as a consequence he is singled out and pushed almost to his breaking point as he faces more frequent and more difficult obstacles than his classmates. Ender is promoted more rapidly than his classmates and then graduates to command school where he faces increasingly more difficult challenges and is pushed even harder. The external challenges that Ender has to face are tough enough, but it is his internal demons that are the hardest to face. The world may need Ender to save it from invasion, but Ender himself is at risk. Ender's sense of self is under constant attack: every aspect of his life is controlled and the world in which he lives has little time for individuality. Ender has a purpose, but not a place.

`If there was love or pity for him, it was only in his dreams.'

The world in which Ender lives is full of challenges to be overcome, constrained by regimented behaviour and absent of compassion. Whether this is justified by the circumstances (do the ends justify the means?) is an interesting question to consider while reading.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Very good read
I've read this book after having seen the movie and even though I knew the plot, it was still a very engaging read. Read more
Published 6 days ago by Anna Kowal
3.0 out of 5 stars More like 3 1/2 stars
More like 3 1/2 stars. Slow at first but then picks up and I couldn't put it down. Way better than the movie.
Published 2 months ago by Kate
3.0 out of 5 stars a solid book
Enjoyable, easy read. Premise is a bit hard to buy into, but the narrative is interesting. Due to the fact that children are the protagonists, there is not a huge amount of... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Anda Vulpoiu
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 2 months ago by Maria Rhodora Gaces
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Good book
Published 2 months ago by Scott Elmore
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing
crafted beautifly , from the introduction until the end, I love the fact that we see from most of the caracter's point of view. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Raphaella
5.0 out of 5 stars one for the ages
Great book! I enjoyed it years ago as a teenager an again now as an adult. Enjoyed it differently each time, as one does when one reads a good book at different times of life. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Violet
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful read
Incredible book.
First read it as a child and a stroke of nostalgia motivated me to read it again recently. If you haven't read it, you should. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Andres Consumer
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun and Emotional Ride
I had been meaning to read this book for a while now and after getting a really great deal at bookoutlet.ca (see link below) I had no more excuses to not. I'm glad I did. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Heather
5.0 out of 5 stars OMGoodness!
I had pretty much no interest in sci-fi and yet this turned out to quite possibly be the best book I have ever read!
Published 5 months ago by Mathieu Louis-seize
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