From Library Staff
The winning title for One Read 2005.
From the critics
AgeAdd Age Suitability
Dance_enchanted_Star74 thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over
selenium_raven_0 thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over
green_tiger_197 thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over
acciomanga thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 13 and 99
violet_cheetah_489 thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 10 and 18
evanmfowler thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 13 and 21
QuotesAdd a Quote
"They found me through the ansible followed it and dwelt in my mind. In the agony of my tortured dreams they came to know me, even as I spent my days destroying them; they found my fear of them, and found also that I had no knowledge I was killing them. In the few weeks they had, they build this place for me, and the Giant's corpse and the playground and the ledge at the end of the world, so I would find this place by the evidence of my eyes. I am the only one they know, and so they can only talk to me and through me."
If you could make them feel as you can make me feel, then perhaps they could forgive you.
“In the moment when I truly understand my enemy, understand him well enough to defeat him, then in that very moment I also love him. I think it’s impossible to really understand somebody, what they want, what they believe, and not love them the way they love themselves. And then, in that very moment when I love them.... I destroy them.”
“Humanity does not ask us to be happy. It merely asks us to be brilliant on its behalf.”
"Perhaps it's impossible to wear an identity without becoming what you pretend to be." -Valentine
'The most noble title any child can have.. is Third.' Demosthenes/ Valentine, Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card. Page 153.
'He had had only one memory that was safe, one good thing, and those bastards had plowed it into him with the rest of the manure-and so he was finished, he wasn’t going to play.' Ender, Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card, page 152.
NoticesAdd a Notice
Violence: lots...fist fights zero gravity fight Ender breaks a guys arm and crushes a boys arm and it crushes his lungs and heart
SummaryAdd a Summary
After being attacked by aliens for the second time, Earth’s government is preparing for a third encounter with the creatures known as the ‘buggers’. Six-year-old Ender Wiggin, the youngest of three brilliant children, has been monitored by the military for his suitability as a potential commander in the upcoming war. Surpassing expectations, Ender is taken to interstellar Battle School where he learns the arts of military strategy and leadership, practicing his skills in simulated war games while leading an isolated and lonely existence of his instructors’ design.
Readers will quickly come to sympathize with Ender; he misses his family, wishes for friendship and acceptance, doesn't want to hurt anyone, and above all wants to be a good person. Ender's deepest fear is not of the buggers or death in battle, but of seeing his sadistic brother's tendencies in himself, a dread triggered by Ender's strong survival instincts and calculated acts of self-preservation. As Ender is forced to defend himself, and his brother Peter struggles to master his own violent impulses, their sister Valentine observes that the brothers are “Two sides of the same coin, but which side is which?” (p. 238) Ender's Game raises the question of what makes killing a crime: the act itself, or the motivation behind it? Good fiction refrains from delivering a moral lecture, instead leading readers to ask themselves difficult questions, and teens will appreciate the absence of pat answers in this novel as they work out their own views.
Ender's genius is evident in his unusually independent and innovative thinking, and his ability to adapt to new situations. He is creative and elastic, pushing beyond perceptual barriers to find original ways of solving problems. As a leader, Ender wisely trusts his soldiers to develop winning strategies through play and experimentation. It soon becomes apparent to the reader why risk-taking children, not yet entrenched in restrictive patterns of thinking, are the government's hope to save the human race from destruction.
The novel touches on a plethora of topics ranging from religious oppression to colonisation. The importance of communication, perspective and understanding are underscored with the revelation that the entire bugger war is due to the failure of the two sides on these counts.
Trust, deception and manipulation run through the adult/child relationships in the book. The Battle School trains students to be weapons in a war for the common good, and treats them accordingly without indulging individual desires. Teen readers will relate as adults in their lives enforce decisions about school and socializing that are more in line with long-term societal values and expectations than the immediate wishes of the teens themselves.
Ender's Game balances the inherent excitement and action of battle with psychology and politics, exploring diverse, complex characters and the relationships between them. Set largely in outer space with gifted protagonists aged six to sixteen, this lengthy and multilayered tale will appeal to strong readers of all genders, especially those with an interest in war, computer games, outer space, or fiction involving moral dilemmas. The final part of the book is a moving meditation on guilt and forgiveness, with a surprising and complicated chance at redemption. Teens entering the age of independence and deliberation will take heart from the novel’s message that whatever mistakes they have made in the past, be they crimes or ignorant acts of recklessness, the future is still theirs to shape.