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Publisher's Summary

How do you systematically destroy a child with love? It's not something that any parent aspires to do, yet a surprising number come perilously close to achieving it.So begins Orson Scott Card's new story from the Ender Universe, a profound meditation on parents and offspring focusing on the childhood of one of Ender's Battle School challengers, Bonzo Madrid, and the circumstances that lead him to his unique place in the Game. Read by a frequent visitor to Ender's world, Scott Brick.
© and (P)2006 Orson Scott Card

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 3.8 out of 5.0
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Story

  • 4.1 out of 5.0
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  • Overall

Goes Nowhere

I was very disappointed by this short story. I thought it would give some insight into how Bonzo Madrid turned out the way he did. Nope. It had almost nothing to do with the Ender saga, other than IF personnel dropping in for a sentence every now and then. It didn't even address the teaser description, which implied that "loving a child so much" was bad for him, presumably spoiling him. There was no indication in this story that Bonzo was spoiled.

What was Orson Scott Card thinking when he wrote and released this?

17 of 19 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story
  • Jammie
  • THATCHER, UT, United States
  • 12-06-11

That OSC is certainly a clever man.

What did you like best about this story?

In “Children of the Mind” and now again in “Pretty Boy” OSC has a way of turning villains into real, almost likeable people.

Any additional comments?

I have despised Bonzo Madrid since I was 12. He was mean to Ender...Ender, whom I love! What’s not to hate about the guy? It is interesting to have my mind changed all these years later.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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BONZO<br /><br /><br /><br /><br />I expected that his whole story would<br /><br /><br />


I expected the story to be told all the way to his death like other characters.

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Why Pretty?

Really short back-story on Bonzo Madrid, one of the boy leaders at battle school in "Ender's Game." The story is about "Bonito" and his family, including his motivation to attend battle school. Who would name their kid "Pretty Boy?" :-) It expands the reader's knowledge on one of the characters. Enjoyed the story.

  • Overall
  • Miranda
  • Kapunda, SA, Australia
  • 07-19-10

An Enjoyable Story

As I considered purchasing this audio book I was confronted by two previous and completely contrasting reviews, so I decided it was best to simply trust that Orson Scott Card would deliver another engaging and beautiful story, regardless of its relevance (or lack thereof) to his 'Ender' series.

The first line of the story is not obviously linked to the developments of the plot as such, and one can also make few assumptions about the story by scrutinising the title illustration. Without its link the the Ender universe, this story would probably not get so much attention, and I myself would not have chosen to listen if it weren't for my trust in the author's ability.

Nevertheless, 'Pretty Boy' is a sweet and beautifully written tale of a child trying to make sense of an adult world. The concept is not remarkably original, but Orson Scott Card's unique style and description of his protagonist's reasoning and thought processes makes it well worth a listen.

Scott Brick surprisingly pulls off the Spanish accent for the characters and reads with appropriate expression, invoking emotion without diminishing it through melodrama.

Not uplifting as such, but very pleasant tale.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • David
  • Los Angeles, CA, United States
  • 04-22-09

a thoughtful backstory to Ender's meanest rival

I thought this story helped the reader of the Ender's Game story gain empathy for Bonzo Madrid, and ultimately feel sorry for him, knowing what eventually happens to him. I thought it was an intelligently written short story about the meanest character in Ender's Game, how the reader gets to see him in his childhood, who geniuely loved his parents and wanted them to be happy. That is also part of what makes Bonzo so scary, because he isn't a deranged misanthrop, but smart and charming kid who had never had any malice in him.

Anyway, I personally liked it, and I can't wait to read more of these Ender's Game shorts revealing other characters.

The length of the story is about the same length as Bean's life in Rotterdam (in Ender's Shadow), so there's a lot of good content to listen to. I wish it were longer and went in more depth with Bonzo's arrival at the Battle School, but I suppose it doesn't really need to.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 05-04-15

Truth Glimpsed Through the Eyes of a Child

An enjoyable life lesson... Of love and betrayal, childish hopes and adult realisations.

A good insight into one of the Battle School children's pasts.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Christine Siobhan barber
  • 11-11-16

Pretty boy

A strange story reminiscent of George Orwell's 1984. Where children are taught to spy on there parents.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • jesjaspers
  • 02-25-17

stands on its own

it is part of the Ender's Game world but fairly well stands on its own as a good read

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  • Wras
  • 05-01-16

Not his best

The characters did not gel for me. and the plot was simplistic.
Sorry but I can not recommend it.

5 of 10 people found this review helpful