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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

Critic Reviews

  • 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 Ratings

Overall

  • 4.4 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    8,164
  • 4 Stars
    3,795
  • 3 Stars
    1,279
  • 2 Stars
    292
  • 1 Stars
    153

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5.0
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Story

  • 4.5 out of 5.0
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    120
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  • Overall
  • Pamela
  • North Hollywood, CA, USA
  • 12-08-03

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.

16 of 22 people found this review helpful

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With great hate comes plenty of drama.

The story is interesting but it keeps making the reader feel is that all? The narration was done really well.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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very good

I enjoy books that invoke thought. love it when a book is finished and you spend time after pondering the story

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Todd
  • Indianapolis, Indiana, United States
  • 03-15-15

HUGE DEPARTURE FROM ENDER's GAME!

What did you like best about Speaker for the Dead? What did you like least?

The story for this book is very well told. I just had hoped this book would be more similar to the original Ender's Game story line. It's an interesting concept, but it will make you want to read the Xenocide book. I didn't care for the performance of this book, it was awful.

What did you like best about this story?

The idea of honestly telling about someone's life after they are dead, no emotion just facts.

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

The cast of 6 alternating performers doing several parts didn't make sense. In one chapter a character might be read by a man, the next a woman, the next a different person... IT was very confusing, and made keeping track of characters more difficult. Some of the performances were AWESOME.... Others were just sub par. .. It really took me out of the story during these shifts.

Was Speaker for the Dead worth the listening time?

Yes, I did enjoy it, but I don't think that I'll listen to it again. . .

Any additional comments?

It's smart science fiction, but this piece focuses more on people than the world in which they live. Also towards the end a character makes a shift that I didn't think made any sense.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Ethosian
  • Earthquake Zone, California
  • 09-12-14

Very slow start, but it does get better

First of all one of the women narrators (the one who does the voice of Ender's sister) is so laid back in her delivery that it really drags the story down in the early part of the book.

Secondly, the book's first chapters could be drastically cut without losing anything critical to the story, but the majority of the story is more engaging as it goes along. All things considered, I did not find this story as satisfying or interesting as Ender's Game.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Gohar
  • Issaquah, WA
  • 09-16-13

Good read for mature audiences

This is not in the same pace as Enders game was. People who loved the first book in this series for its war games and teen rivalries might find this one slow and boring at times. I enjoyed both the books. First one was definitely a fun read and this one has its moments but it starts slow. The author did a great job writing this book in '86 when there was not much of internet fancies we have now. The philosophical part of the book is also way heavier than the first book and one which takes a while to settle. Very interesting read. I wish the names chosen for the lead characters were more nuanced and easy to remember. They are Portuguese names but sometimes even foreign names are easier to remember.

Narrators did a great job switching between characters. The female narrator was sometimes spoke so low (almost to a whisper) which made it difficult to hear when driving. Overall a good read. I highly recommend.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Slow Starter

What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

The male narrator is ok, but the female narrator is highly annoying. If I hadn't enjoyed Ender's Game so much I would have returned this book. The story is slow starting, and it was not until at least 40% of the way through that I was really hooked by it. I'm very glad I finished it and did enjoy the ending.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Scott
  • Nasu, Japan
  • 06-03-13

Is that really Ender?

Orson Scott Card, now infamous as a Mormon zealot and anti-marriage equality bigot, seems to be simply borrowing the Ender "branding" for this novel, which has little or nothing to do with Ender's Game. Incredibly slow-paced and filled with preposterous stuff about religious missionaries running colonies on alien worlds, it manages to pull out a bit in the last quarter with admittedly interesting relevations about the "piggies." I've read plenty of far more interesting science-fiction, including from Mr. Card himself.

The narration strategy is absolutely crazy, with something like seven or eight different talents chiming in at various points. For the most part they're all quite good, but I completely fail to see the point of having so many people involved in the work, especially if you're not going to assign them to specific characters. So three stars for the performances, but only one star for the production of the audio.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Classic

Read this book many years ago and the listen was just as good. This is a classic SF book and has not lost anything over time.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Kent
  • Springfield, VA, United States
  • 01-27-11

Not bad - a little slow - but worth the time!

Good narration, but a bit too soothing of a primary voice for a long commute. Still - well done on the narration, overall. The story was good, but not full of nearly as much action as its predecessor ("Ender's Game"). As a sequel - not bad, but also not consistent with the pace/story of "Ender's Game". Intriguing plot - but at a VERY slow pace. Glad I listened to it, but it didn't draw me in, much. The plot concepts were solid (and intriguing), but you had to be listening for depth. Probably not a great "casual" listen. I had to replay several scenes when I failed to catch the subtleties of some plot points.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Kim
  • 07-07-14

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. <br/>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.

  • Overall
  • Amazon Customer
  • 04-07-13

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.

  • Overall
  • Gustav
  • 06-17-12

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.

  • Overall
  • Piano man 2007
  • 08-12-11

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

  • Overall
  • John
  • 02-05-11

Excellent

Excellent book, fantastic narration.

  • Overall
  • Derry M.
  • 05-30-10

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.

  • Overall
  • Peter
  • 03-17-09

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.