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!.
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©1986, 1990 Orson Scott Card; (P)2002 Fantastic Audio, an Imprint of Audio Literature
"The most powerful work Card has produced. Speaker not only completes Ender's Game, it transcends it." (Fantasy Review)
I've been into epic fantasy, sci-fi and everything in between since I first read The Lord of the Rings. I also love detective novels.
I felt as though this was a book I should have read years ago and regretted that I did not.
Like many others who have reviewed this book, I also enjoyed Enders Game but took up Speaker for the Dead with no preconceived ideas. The first part of this novel is rightly spent setting up the rest and, since the story that follows is based on the characters experiences and the emotions that arise because of them, they form the important foundation for the rest of the novel. In other words it contextualises it.
If you want another Enders Game, then it is not the same. It is richer, deeper and slower to build. It requires a reader with empathy, a little patience and an open mind.
I will not nitpick the science but it was written a while ago and our collective understanding and expectations have changed in the interim. I do believe, however, that eventually technological development will plateau as we discover all the technology that will serve us and it will remain somewhat similar until something changes to cause the next great cycle of advancement.
It touched me and it made me think which is all I can ask of any book.
As much as I enjoyed Ender's Game, I loved this book more. I liked the action of Ender's Game, but it was the inner conflicts and thoughts of his character that I really enjoyed. (Card made me really care about Ender and what happened to him.) It is just this kind of intimacy that I think is the core of this book. It has such emotional intensity with a transcendant spirituality,that made me want to "inhale" this book. I found myself just sitting in my car long after I had reached my destination just to complete another chapter. This book grabbed me and flung me on the roller coaster of its message, and I didn't want to ever get off.
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.
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.
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.
the female narrator didn't have to intone every word. Ruins it for me. Makes the characters sound pretentious.
Card is a great writer.
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.
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.
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.
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.
This book was very enjoyable. But, if you're looking for the same kind of excitement that you found in Enders Game, you might be dissapointed. It's ironic that the author only wrote Enders Game to set the stage for Speaker for the Dead. As my 14-year old daughter said, "becasue he [the author] tried too hard to be serious and send a moral message, the story suffered." I enjoyed this more than my daughters did. (But even so, they listened non-stop.)
"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.
"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.
"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
Excellent book, fantastic narration.
"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.
"Story-telling at its best"
Story-telling at its best. I thoroughly enjoyed Ender's Game and this is a brilliant but very different sequel. Do not expect a continuation of the same themes as EG; Ender has matured both as the written character and as the man, and he is now seeking redemption for his xenocide. Beautiful storytelling by OSC and the excellent narrators - If you enjoy Sci-Fi or are hooked by the original Ender book, you will not be dissapointed.
I really don't like flatly contradicting other reviewers, and someone else has said this is their favourite book ever. However, personally I disliked it and, after several hours of hoping it would improve, eventually moved onto something else without finishing it. Part of the problem was that, although I had read and enjoyed Ender's Game and Ender's Shadow, there were clearly some books that I'd missed out of the series which meant that there were some big leaps in understanding this (I've noticed this elsewhere on Audible with series: absolutely no attempt is made to help the reader work out which order to listen in, and sometimes the reviews are actively quite misleading).
However, I also found the plot painfully slow and the female half of the narrating team had me grinding my teeth at the way she was determined to wring every ounce of slow pathos out of the story.
So this might be the best book ever or it might be one you'll never finish. Personally, I would recommend making sure that you're listening to the series in the right order and also listening to the start of the narration to see if it seems like your cup of tea.
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