Is Ender the general Earth so desperately needs? The only way to find out is to throw him into ever-harsher training at Battle School, to chip away and find the diamond inside, or destroy him utterly. Ender Wiggin is six years old when his training begins. He will grow up fast.
But Ender is not the only result of the experiment. His two older siblings, Peter and Valentine, are every bit as unusual as he is, but in very different ways. Among the three of them lie the abilities to remake a world. If, that is, the world survives.
This Special 20th Anniversary Edition of the Hugo and Nebula Award-winning classic is now digitally remastered with a full cast production. It also contains an exclusive bonus: an original postscript written and recorded by the author himself, Orson Scott Card!
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©1977, 1985, 1991 Orson Scott Card (P)2002 Fantastic Audio, an imprint of Audio Literature
"Intense' is the word for Ender's Game." (The New York Times)
Although I do not like how the book tries to be a prequel for the next book in the series, which I do not plan to read or hear, it stands on its own.
The story will grip you until the buggers are vanquished and then turns back on itself in regret and setting up the next book in the series.
However, if the ending were left as the buggers as evil and human kind's xenocide as good then I think it would be all to one dimensional (akin to startroopers) a portrayal.
I think even self serving as it is, the authors attempt to turn this book into to a prequel, it serves to give further emotional dimensions to the characters.
A 5 star read/listen for sure!!
An excellent reading of a science fiction classic. The use of multiple voices and a semi-dramatic reading make this a very good listen and enhance an already good story. The story is compelling, if slightly taxing on our ability to suspend disbelief, but you start to care so much about the main character that you can overlook some of the hard to swallow parts.
I frankly, never heard of Orson Scott Card, not being a big reader of science fiction for many
decades, but he has changed my mind.
Regardless of genre, he iss, in my mind, a writer's writer! Anyone who wants to know, hear and feel what truely good writing is and especially anyone who wants to write fiction, really needs to listen to this book. There are no efforts to impress the reader with one's extensive and exhaustive vocabulary... something which only flaunts a writers ego (and strokes a reader's sense of pseudo intelligence) and adds little or nothing to any work I have ever read or listened to. There is no author ego polluting the story. It is all about plot and character development. It is the clean and transparent creation of an alternate and temporary reality... and after all, isn't that what fiction is ultimately about! There are furthermore no distractions of unnecessary diversions and dialogue (as in mr. koontz on occassion and sadly, stephen king, recently in Cell).
And most important, most books fail with dissapointing or poor endings (Mr. King's weakest point), this ending is genius. It finishes the story and leaves open the door for anticipating sequells. Whereas other's leave me feeling like i am watching black and white reruns of "to be continued next week," one leaves this book feeling like one has just completed a grand feast... full and fully satisfied.
It was with great interest as I listened to the author at the end of the book talking about why he wanted to write and how he approaches writing. His understanding of what makes bad writing and what makes good writing closely parallels the evolutions of my own thoughts on the topic... even though I am but a mere listener. The entire anniversay edition, including the author's epilogue is worthy of a segment of any advanced writer's training program. If i could give this 10 stars i wouldn't hesitate a moment to do so. Bravo! (albeit nearly 30 years late)
Orson Scott Card is an excellent writer and this rendition of the book is A grade material.
What a twisted ending!
As the first book in an epic story, it stands quite well on it's own. This is a story about treachery, survival, the will to live against all odds. You can take it at the surface if you want. But it's got layers of depth to its ideas. It presents some deep philosophical questions about the individual versus group, society and mass mind, survival of the fittest as an individual versus as a group, humans versus aliens. I beleive Card has been educated on key biological concepts by the greats like Darwin, Huxley, Gould, Dawkins and he's applied them on a biological and social level in this book. I was very pleased that this book is more than just a light hearted story. In the spirit of great science fiction, Card has successfully woven in scientific theory and concepts on many levels... the book has scientific theories applied on technological, individual and social levels. It has "what-if's" on what can be technologically. But it goes beyond and interweaves all this with a truely rolicking adventure that includes drama and a twisted surpise. Card even threw in difficult questions on what is right and wrong.... and spiced it all up with added treachery and trickery. The personalities he developes through all this are clear as a bell. After reading this book, I KNOW Peter, Valentine, Ender and even Dr. Graff. I could identify with the characters. This is a book I can relate to and one I'll be thinking about for quite a while. It's definitely on my re-read (or relisten) list for a couple of years from now.
Thank you Mr. Card for writing this. I can't wait to read more about Ender Wiggens.
This is far and away one of the best listens I have experienced. I could not turn it off but, at the same time, I did not want it to end. The time at the battle school was enthralling.
Great book. My only complaint is that after the ending, which was great, he kept on going. It is clear that he only tacked this on so that his second book, which was already writen, would fit into a series.
This is without a doubt the best sci-fi audio book I've ever listened to. I've been searching for something to captivate me as Enders' Game has and nothing compares. Truly a work of art!
This is a great book. The audio is also great. The readers of this series are very engaging and make the book really come alive. I highly reccomend the entire series. And this is definitely the first book in the series to read.
"You've go to read this!"
You are unfamiliar with the master that is Orson Scott Card, then you must get this! It may be a science fiction type setting but the story is much more about character development. It's exciting, wonderfully paced and once you start listening you just can't stop - you care so much about Ender.
The narration is just about flawless, and the use of different narrators adds to the interest and depth.
After this one - get 'Speaker for the dead' - it's even better than 'Ender's Game', and is probably my favourite book of all time. I cannot praise these two books enough.
"A fantastic find!"
This is the first Orson Scott Card book I have read, and I have now booked two more of the 'Ender' series in my Wish List. It was one of the most touching and memorable books I have read, and this from an author, who in my ignorance, I had always characterised as a pulp sci-fi writer. From start to finish the book captivated me with its depiction of a reluctant boy-soldier who is pushed to the limit in the military's pursuit of a worthy commander to save the human race from an imminent alien invasion. This book is introduced as an 'Audible Kids' production but do not be fooled - it is a clever, mature book for children and adults alike.
It is a science fiction book at its core, but the characters are brought to life by beautiful writing and excellent narration. You will remember Ender Wiggins and his story for a long time.
I came to this book having already listened to Enders Shadow, a book written considerably later but occupying some of the same characters and taking place over the same period.
The book is great, worth the acclaim it rightly garnered. The presentation of the book is also fantastic, well read so you can get a feel for the characters, going quickly enough to not dawdle and remain interesting, whilst slow enough that you never miss the important parts.
I would highly reccommend it to anyone who enjoys well written, well produced and original Science Fiction.
Story – 5/5
I finally got around to this audiobook, and it was well worth the wait. Having watched and moderately enjoyed the film, I wanted to read the original source, especially as it is heralded as the best Sci-fi book of all time by so many. It didn’t disappoint either, it is certainly the best sci-fi I have read (although I haven’t read many)
The depth of character and emotion were superb, Orson Scott Card really gets us into Ender’s head. The strategies employed in the battle room and against the buggers were highly entertaining, and extremely detailed and well written, so you are able to picture exactly what is being described. The bits I enjoyed the most was the elements of the story about Ender’s siblings though, and also the inserts between chapters of the battle commanders discussing Ender’s training, which you don’t get in the film. It really helps to understand why these kids are so intelligent and how they are seen by the adults.
Are there any Negatives? I certainly couldn’t find any. I am looking forward to the next book in the series; even though I know it is completely different.
Performance – 4.5/5
Although it has multiple narrators, I can’t say it added much to the story like other full cast productions have. Each were very good in their own right, it just wouldn’t have been any worse if just 1 of them read it.
The main narrator, I think it may have been Stefan Rudnicki, was especially good, and I will keep an eye out for other audiobooks read by him.
Overall – 5/5
"Stick through the first few chapters"
It took me a while to get into Ender's Game. At first I disliked all of the characters because they were such cruel and boneheaded people. Not just the children but also the adults putting Ender through the training. However, as I read on, some of the characters began to reveal the good aspects of their personalities. This provided the story with a much needed break from the constant bullying and military pressure.
I really started to like this book once the war games started. I enjoyed the zero-gravity combat scenes because of the well-described strategy involved. I loved the anticipation of finding out if Ender would win or not, and how he would do it. Once I was immersed in the story, the plot did not meander. I was constantly involved in what was going on and the ending took me by surprise in a very satisfying way.
I have mixed opinions about a couple of the narrators. The narrator who voices Ender's chapters has a great reading voice, but it's too deep to impersonate children accurately. It's easy to forget you are reading about kids when 8 year old Ender sounds like a 30 year old man. Also, the woman who voices Ender's sister's chapters sounded irritatingly melodramatic with every word.
So after initially doubting my ability to enjoy this book, I pushed through the first few chapters and realized what a great story it was. The writing style was clean and simple, the story was excellent, the narrators did a good job, despite a couple of minor problems.
Overall, Ender's Game is a great book about children being trained to command sci-fi armies with a side plot of children taking over the world via internet blogs (I don't get that last part either).
"Sorry I waited this long to read it"
Yes, very enjoyable book - will try others in the series next
The human element, focusing on the difference betwen the three children and their interaction with each other and society.
The reading was very believable, especially the adult charaters. Having a six year old child narrated by an adult sometimes makes you lose perspective on the fact that Ender is a child.
A nice twist at the end, not entirely unexpected, but completed the book nicely
The voice work and characterisation was superb.
For me the most memorable moments were between Ender and Alai.
Both actors were excellent.
I couldn't stop.
I'm looking for the button to click six stars
I first read Enders Game in my teens many years ago and having watched the movie and felt thoroughly disappointed I decided to revisit the book in audio format.
The delivery and performance is fantastic - the novel flows. Getting lost in the story is easy unlike a lot of the audiobooks I've listened to.
It's such an enjoyable listed I've bought extra Audible credits to get Speaker For the Dead (with. the same production team).
I enjoyed this story and finished it pretty quickly. Ender is an unusual character that you quickly become invested in and want to know how his story ends.
The multi-actor performance works well - in his postcript at the end the author says he writes from a stageplay background, so the spoken performance suits his work well.
As a tiny note, the main narrator's voice is very deep so I found it difficult to listen to on my phone using the speakers (it got lost too easily in background noise) and needed to use headphones to make it louder. Maybe I'm just getting old!
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