Nearly 100 years before the events of Orson Scott Card’s best-selling novel Ender’s Game, humans were just beginning to step off Earth and out into the Solar System. A thin web of ships in both asteroid belts; a few stations; a corporate settlement on Luna. No one had seen any sign of other space-faring races; everyone expected that First Contact, if it came, would happen in the future, in the empty reaches between the stars. Then a young navigator on a distant mining ship saw something moving too fast, heading directly for our sun.
When the alien ship screamed through the solar system, it disrupted communications between the far-flung human mining ships and supply stations, and between them and Earth. So Earth and Luna were unaware that they had been invaded until the ship pulled into Earth orbit, and began landing terra-forming crews in China. Politics and pride slowed the response on Earth, and on Luna, corporate power struggles seemed more urgent than distant deaths. But there are a few men and women who see that if Earth doesn’t wake up and pull together, the planet could be lost.
©2014 Orson Scott Card and Aaron Johnston (P)2014 Macmillan Audio
Powerful ending, gets you charged for the Second Formic War! Keep in mind, there is still one more war before Ender - but the story concludes with a believable resolution and connects some of the dots between a pre-Formic era and that of Battle School.
Seeing Mazer develop and witness his initial recognition of the unique value that (gifted) kids can provide. Some of the tenets of Battle School gain their origin in this book.
When the band was finally all together. After two novels of parallel story lines I was eager for them to be in the same room planning for an attack. All history of "only being a free miner" or a "corporate snake" is at last left behind with all focus on a high risk mission.
Lem's holo to Victor; after all they had been through together and against each other - admitting that he truly appreciates and respects him.
Love the conclusion to this story arc. Being former military, and having directly worked with several other countries militaries, the bureaucracy is totally believable. I know the science is probably a bit much for academics to accept but if you have read the other 15-ish books in this series you should be beyond that. There are two reasons that this story did not get 5 stars: 1. There's only so many times that I can hear "I can't let you risk your life" and actually believe it. The characters are always in dire situations and I'd think by the time it's do-or-all-humans-die it's total war time and everyone is all-in, just accept the help and MOVE!2. I have been to China and know how prideful and protective a society/government they are, but the thought that they would STILL not ask for help after millions of their civilians are butchered by aliens is a stretch. If nothing else at least the Russians and maybe the North Koreans would be welcomed.
the actual writing still feels like OSC, but the imagination put into this book doesn't feel remotely close to the first ender series. it's at the point where despite reading the original and a few of the shadow series books, i'm not even sure i'll listen to book #4. :(
Orson Scott Card is one of my favorite writers, but in these books, he seems to be giving his cowriter too much room to screw it up. Don't get me wrong, this is a must read for all Ender readers and its pretty good. But here's the main issue, although all of his books are a little loose with the science, in these three books, science is thrown out the window in places to add drama. There is plenty of Drama with the bugger invasion without upsetting readers who recognize when the science if off.
The books are great and I look forward to the next set where Mazor confronts the Bugger fleet but there are some inconsistencies you won't find in Cards earlier Ender books. Also, most of the narrators add to the book but some of the narration is overly dramatized and it can be a bit annoying.
The book is full of the type of characters that you can really cheer for. Sound minds face seemingly insurmountable challenges and their solutions are so wise, you can almost learn life lessons from them. O ya, and there is a ship load of thrilling action.
Mazer Rackam is my hero. (So is Col. Graff but he isn't in this book.) He is tough as nails, teachable as a child, innovative as Ender, and yet he still develops and progresses in the book.
Lem Dukes' voice is something special. His oily self righteous personality is all over his voice.
There were quite a few heart wrenching cliff hangers of especially potent strength. And at the chant of WE ARE THE SONS OF U.D.T.... I am so glad I chose to get this as an audiobook.
The ender universe and the dune universe are two of my favorite stories to read. Half way through, while talking with a co-worker, I discovered there was another book in the series. Infuriating, now I have to wait to finish the story. I am looking forward to the next book(s). I can't wait to see how things tie together.
I liked the characters. I like card's writing. This series though should have been one book and felt like a cash grab. No doubt there will be three more drawn out books about the second formic war. this should have been book 1 of that series.
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