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Speaker for the Dead Audiobook

Speaker for the Dead

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Publisher's Summary

In the aftermath of his terrible war, Ender Wiggin disappeared, and a powerful voice arose: the Speaker for the Dead, who told the true story of the Bugger War. Now, long years later, a second alien race has been discovered by Portuguese colonists on the planet Lusitania. But again the aliens' ways are strange and frightening...again, humans die. And it is only the Speaker for the Dead, who is also Ender Wiggin the Xenocide, who has the courage to confront the mystery...and the truth. Orson Scott Card infuses this tale with intellect by casting his characters in social, religious, and cultural contexts.

This, the author's definitive edition of the sequel to Ender's Game, also includes an original postscript written and recorded by the author himself, Orson Scott Card!.

Browse more titles in the Ender Wiggin series.

©1986, 1990 Orson Scott Card; (P)2002 Fantastic Audio, an Imprint of Audio Literature

What the Critics Say

  • Hugo Award Winner, Best Novel, 1987
  • Nebula Award Winner, Best Novel, 1986

"The most powerful work Card has produced. Speaker not only completes Ender's Game, it transcends it." (Fantasy Review)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (11085 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Sal BROOKLYN, NY, USA 07-21-04
    Sal BROOKLYN, NY, USA 07-21-04 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Poor follow-up to Ender's Game"

    For those who read this BECAUSE they enjoyed "Ender's Game": Beware, "Speaker for the Dead" is nothing like it. I loved Ender's Game. It was a suspenseful, delightful, innovative journey with the hero as he brilliantly solved the challenges he faced. Author Card kept the surprises coming as he let you in on the inner workings of the mind of a genius child.
    There is none of that in Speaker for the Dead, which is melodramatic without being suspenseful or insightful. Instead, minutia is presented where plot and storyline is what is needed. I never would have made it to the end of the story if I had not read Ender's Game first. On the basis of Ender's Game, I kept reading (listening) hoping that Card would at some point deliver the goods. It never happens.

    23 of 29 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Todd Wynia Phoenix, AZ 01-12-03
    Todd Wynia Phoenix, AZ 01-12-03 Member Since 2001
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    "A brilliant book"

    I listened to Enders Game and really loved it. Orson Scott Card is a fabulous writer. So when it came time to download a new book, I got Speaker for the Dead. And again I loved the book.

    The author manages to create a completely new society and social structure of another species on a far away world. The interaction between the humans and this other species makes you question your own assumptions about people of other cultures. How much of our current world tension is a result of true incompatibility and how much is due to just misunderstanding the other culture?

    So the book has that whole deep "hmmm" thing going on and it's just entertaining. It's got enough mystery to keep you guessing about how situations will turn out. A sentient computer "program" named Jane adds another element of interest.

    As with Enders Game, this audiobook used multiple narrators. They all did an excellent job with the exception of a way overly dramatic female. I found I couldn't wait 'til we moved on to another narrator. Sorry lady. Turn down the acting knob a little. Even with Little Miss Drama, this book is well worth listening to.

    29 of 37 people found this review helpful
  •  
    The Kindler 02-27-16
    The Kindler 02-27-16 Member Since 2014

    I like to read and listen to Science, Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Military, History, and Thillers.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Brilliant"
    Any additional comments?

    There is a lot of controversy around Card but he still writes really interesting books that require the reader to think about the implications of each action and reaction. It is a wonderful masterpiece and deserves the reader to think critically about the ideas of Card.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jacobus Johannesburg, South Africa 11-28-13
    Jacobus Johannesburg, South Africa 11-28-13 Member Since 2013

    When I drive, I read... uhm listen. I like SciFi, Fantasy, some Detective and Espionage novels and Religion. Now and then I will also listen to something else.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Story
    "A fugitive finds a resting place"

    According to Orson Scott Card "Ender's Game" is actually the introduction to the much deeper story you will find in "Speaker for the Dead." I am not sure if I agree with this statement. However, I do find the idea of someone speaking the truth about a dead person on or after his funeral very appealing, maybe because I am myself a minister of religion and has buried a lot of people. The basic premise of Card's story is that the truth brings in some or other way healing.

    In "Speaker for the Dead" you will meet Ender thousands of years after his great victory over the "Buggers" on his way to the only planet with a different intelligent life form instead of humans in the universe. After the "Piggies" killed one of the members of the human community that has settled on the planet, a call is made by a bitter woman to come and speak the dead person's death. Andrew Wiggins as a Speaker for the Dead responds to the call leaving his sister behind for the first time.

    What will the butcher of the "Buggers" find? Meet Ender far off in the future - a changed man - in a new role. The book comes highly recommended. I completely understand why it has won the Nebula award on its hey day.

    Like usual David Birney and Stefan Rudnicki does an excellent job with the narration.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Valerie 10-30-11
    Valerie 10-30-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A very good read"

    This is the follow up story to Ender's Game, though if you were expecting anything remotely like EG you won't find it - try Ender's Shadow instead (also an excellent book). Speaker for the Dead is a very solid and interesting story in its own terms, and it raises fascinating questions such as the value of a life, community responsibility for the behaviour of its members, protection vs self-determination and many others. I found it gripping when I read it in hardcopy many years ago, and the audio version was worth a listen. The multiple narrators works quite well, for if one voice grates a little (and one of them did) you know they will soon be replaced by another. My only criticism, if it is one, is that I was not convinced by the speed of the plot line: the Speaker for the Dead found out everything he needed to know and developed deep relationships with humans and aliens within a few weeks. Otherwise a very good read.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Clark Ashland, OR, United States 09-03-11
    Clark Ashland, OR, United States 09-03-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Would have been 1/2 hour shorter if..."

    the female narrator didn't have to intone every word. Ruins it for me. Makes the characters sound pretentious.

    Card is a great writer.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chris Martinez St. Louis, MO 02-09-07
    Chris Martinez St. Louis, MO 02-09-07 Listener Since 2004
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    "Good story!"

    This takes place after Ender's Game and begins a sort of different type of story. Ender's Game is more action based, and the rest of the series has more geo-political and sociological themed. I'd recommend giving this a listen, but if you find it a little too thoughtful for you, you may want to skip directly to the Shadow series - those follow Bean, and are written more similarly to EG.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jason 10-17-05
    Jason 10-17-05 Listener Since 2003
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    "Worthy successor"

    I actually liked this a bit more than Ender's Game (which I thought was also great). The story has matured along with Ender's Character. However, this book will be disappointing if you are not prepared to consider it the first of a trilogy. The two following books are excellent as well.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Erynn Seattle, WA, USA 08-06-03
    Erynn Seattle, WA, USA 08-06-03 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Where Ender's Game leaves off..."

    This book follows perfectly the first book, 'Ender's Game.' The same cast from Fantastic Audio is back to do another great job.
    'Speaker..' doesn't have the action that 'Ender's Game' did, but instead focuses more on the political and psychological side of trying to start again on a new planet, and making first contact with an alien species. Orson Scott Card excels again at creating the most interesting characters possible and taking you deep into their psyche. If you liked Ender's Game, you will like where this story takes you.

    8 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Pamela North Hollywood, CA, USA 12-08-03
    Pamela North Hollywood, CA, USA 12-08-03
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    "Ummm...."

    I gave a rave review to Ender's Game. I eagerly bought this audiobook as well, expecting a continuation of the well-written and engrossing story. I have removed it from my mp3 player and will not be giving it another chance. 'Boring' is the most applicable word I can use in regards to this book. I couldn't get my mind to focus on what the narrators were saying, because the actual story itself was just so uninteresting, with drawn out dialogs and dull situations.

    Part of the reason this story failed for me is because the characters that I cared about from the first story aren't in it (and if they were, I couldn't bear to trudge that far into the narrative to find them). Also, the narrators themselves don't help. They are monotonous and dry. One lady, the one who did the sister in the first book, is almost unbearable. I lived through her intonations in the first book and came to associate her voice with the sister. It's unsettling to hear her voice now associated with another character, read in the same unpleasant monotone.

    It almost pains me to give a bad review to the author who so thrilled me with Ender's Game. But I just couldn't finish this book. Overall, it was just disappointing.

    14 of 19 people found this review helpful
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  • Amazon Customer
    Sutton in Ashfield, United Kingdom
    1/16/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Speaker for the Dead"

    A what to say.
    This was a great way to pass a couple of days having read the book, what seems to be a lifetime ago, I thought I'd refresh and it surpassed my memories.
    I'll look forward to the rest. 5 stars in all categories.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Alex
    MalakoffFrance
    8/10/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Desperately disappointing"

    Having just finished listening to Ender's game, I was full of impatience to hear the sequel. Ender's game is a brilliant story ... this follow up is about as disappointing as is possible to imagine. There is virtually no story (the first six hours could be told in 16 minutes) and we are subjected to just endless over-detailed consideration of the implausible and somewhat puerile emotional and spiritual state of the unnecessarily numerous characters. The reasons why there are repeated interjections in Portuguese or input from a Catholic bishop in a story set in the distant and technologically unrecognisable future are, to put it mildly, obscure. Indeed, the plot in no way stands up to the technological context,

    Finally, like Ender's Game, this is read by a heterogeneous group of readers. They switch and change repeatedly, often for no good reason that I could see. Certainly, they do not take one voice for one character. Possibly, when one reader got bored, another took over. One of the women reads like immature amateur trying desperately to impress her teacher by attempting to inject dripping (inappropriate) emotion and deep meaning (that's not actually there) into the most banal and inconsequential phrases.

    I recommend Ender's Game to anyone. I recommend Speaker for the Dead to no-one.

    3 of 6 people found this review helpful
  • Garry
    7/7/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Confusing narrative"
    What would have made Speaker for the Dead better?

    A shorter introduction. With any other book I would have given up within the first hour. I found it hard to work out what was happening and who was who a lot of the time


    If you’ve listened to books by Orson Scott Card before, how does this one compare?

    Ender's game is probably just about my favourite book so I was eagerly looking forward to the next instalment of the trilogy. However, I was hugely disappointed. Others have commented about too much religion and I agree.


    What didn’t you like about David Birney and Stefan Rudnicki ’s performance?

    I found it very confusing having multiple speakers reading the same part. The voice of the narrator helps you build a picture of the character that adds to the book. So, to have a different voice pop up every few minutes reading the same character was off-putting in the extreme.


    You didn’t love this book--but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    Most of the parts with Ender were still pretty good.


    Any additional comments?

    Unlikely to read the 3rd part of the trilogy which is a shame given how good Ender's game was.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Kim
    Broenshoej, Denmark
    7/7/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great read/listen"
    Would you listen to Speaker for the Dead again? Why?

    The story is doing a great job on explaining the aftermath of Enders Game. Often I find myself sad to having a story end, and that I did with Enders Game, until I figured that a large series of books was doing a great job covering different perspectives of what happened after Enders Game, as well as along side of it.
    There will be a day where I crave to listen to these stories all over again.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Speaker for the Dead?

    The revelations of the piggies. When you finally get an insight to how they live, and how being different and trying to help can seem as an act of aggression.


    What about David Birney and Stefan Rudnicki ’s performance did you like?

    The voice action was great. The voices to begin with are great for reading, I did not find any annoying or overacted voices. Instead they had a good sense of making me know who was talking, without exaggerating.


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    The books does strike emotion, both laughter, sadness and compassion.


    Any additional comments?

    This book is great, though I advise anyone wanting to read it, to start from Enders Game.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Matheus
    Diemen, Netherlands
    4/16/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great book, awfull portuguese."
    Any additional comments?

    This book is amazing, could not stop listening, and the interpretation is also nice. But as a native Brazilian Portuguese speaker, it was painful to listen to any Portuguese spoken on the book, most was beyond recognition. I had to wait the English translation to understand what they wanted to say. The characters names in Portuguese were also very badly spoken, hard to match with any normal names in Brazil.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    BEXLEY, United Kingdom
    4/7/13
    Overall
    "Different to what I thoughts"

    This was a good book very different to the first book in the seris but it takes the main character Ender in a new direction.

    I really enjoyed it and am looking forward to reading the next book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Gustav
    London, United Kingdom
    6/17/12
    Overall
    "Changes the gears for the series (still great!)"

    I love this whole series. The second book is as always wonderfully narrated. This book is quite different from the first, and that is a good thing. The author isn't being lazy and looking at the same questions over and over again. This, as it happens, is true for most of his books.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Piano man 2007
    Europe
    8/12/11
    Overall
    "Too much christianity for me !"


    The book has its good and bad side. I like the detailed characters, altough the whole story is interwoven with religious stuff, sin, christianity, self-pity ... Can you image planets being colonized thousands of years from now with bishops as a main function in society ? I sure can't and I sure not hope so, just too far fetched...

    I looked him up on wiki after hearing the book that's when I found out his story are interwoven with his mormone religion...

    The book won a hugo award, main reason I wanted to hear it. But my guess is is that America gave this man an award because christianity is 30% of the SF story...

    3 stars for the characters & plot, -2 for religous crap ...

    All in all worth hearing though

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • John
    DublinIreland
    2/5/11
    Overall
    "Excellent"

    Excellent book, fantastic narration.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Derry M.
    5/30/10
    Overall
    "Speaker for the Dead"

    I really liked this book. It follows on from Ender's Game and brings the listener on to the next stage of the principal character's life/development. I wasn't much into science fiction. Then I read Ender's Game and next Speaker for the Dead. I must say I am now a convert. Both these books were great. Great stories, well developed characters, appropriatley paced. I read other reviews after reading these books and now I feel I may have started at the pinnacle and may have let myself in for a lot of disappointment going forward. I would strongly suggest that one reads Ender's Game before Speaker for the Dead. They both stand well alone but it certainly will add to your enjoyment should you read in sequence.
    All in all I would highly recommend this book. Having not read a lot of science fiction this book and it's prequel will make me seek out more from this genre. I would highly recommend this book and the audiobook experience enhanced it even more. The production values of the audio are also very good. The timely usage of background music adds an other world atmosphere and the reader's voice is easy to listen to while retaining one's attention.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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