Ender's Game

What Game?

Ender's game takes place on an Earth, who's fight with The Buggers has brought humanity to it's knees. On Earth, families are restricted from having more than two children unless granted special permission from the government. The government allowed Ender Wiggin to be conceived as the third child in a family who's children are all geniuses. As specially selected by government officials, Ender travels to a battle school to train for the expected, third invasion of the buggers, where life revolves around zero gravity battles.

*Scanvenges through pile of information*

Ender's Game is definitely more than it appears to be. The children of the book are all capable of expressing very complex thoughts and emotions despite many of them being younger than the age of 13. They interact and think like adults, despite being manipulated by them, except on rare occasions when Valentine and Peter (Ender's siblings) decided to control the world. The "games" that they play in the battle school are much more than games, as the story continues, we see how the games become everything to many of the children and how the game is very hard to tell apart from the reality that they are living. It's due to the games that we experience a characters death.


Peter Wiggin, the protagonists brother is portrayed as being ruthless, manipulative, and extremely cunning. He embodies the characteristics of a psychopath as he mentions his intentions of murdering his siblings and enjoys torturing animals. He is a very influential person and towards the end of the novel, conquers the world. This is the opposite of Ender Wiggin, who does not want to hurt anyone whether they are friend or foe. Ender is kind, friendly, and helps people without having evil intentions, unlike his older brother who only "helps" people for his own benefit. Their differences represent the fight between good and evil.


Throughout the book we see children talk and act like adults, and they go into battle and even die towards the end of the book. This is also something seen throughout history as many young men, possibly considered children are forced into combat. As we grow older we trade the plastic guns and costumes for real guns and uniforms.


Within the protagonist, there is an identity crisis as he is trying to figure out who and what he really is. He hates the idea of being anything like his evil older brother and many times he tries to convince himself that he is a good person. After battling depression at the tender age of 9 and nearly destroying an alien civilization, he realizes who he really is.

GAME

The most important word in this book was the word "game". The reason for this is because the game that Ender plays, whether it's in his mind or in zero-gravity, is important to the plot. The "game" that they play in the battle rooms totally dominates the lives of many soldiers. The mind game that Ender plays in his room ends up being a great tool but also causes Ender to go through a stage of depression. This "game" was never much of a game to begin with since, as previously mentioned, it is a sugar-coated form of their reality.

Direct Quote

"Human beings are free except when humanity needs them. Maybe humanity needs you. To do something. Maybe humanity needs me—to find out what you're good for. We might both do despicable things, Ender, but if humankind survives, then we were good tools." ~ Graff


This quote is important because Graff is telling Ender that human individuals are just tools used to keep humanity alive. Humans are used and sacrificed for the good of humans, and this would later be shown as the adults in the government sacrificed the children and manipulated Ender into doing so.

Quote

Perhaps it's called the end of the world because it's the end of the games, because I can go to one of the villages and become one of the little boys working and playing there, with nothing to kill and nothing to kill me, just living there. As he thought of it, though, he could not imagine what "just living" might actually be. He had never done it in his life. But he wanted to do it anyway.


Ender Wiggin is playing a mind game where he has to fight creatures and struggles to be a better person where he won't hurt people. He thinks about how he would like to live out a normal life even when his life has been everything but normal up to this point.

What would I change?

Not much, the book was very good and I enjoyed reading it. There was one point in the plot that I didn't really find very believable in this science fiction novel and that is the point where Valentine and Peter set out to conquer the world. I would change it up in a way that made humans seem real and change their reactions to a way that people would react today, in real life.

Recommend?

I would definitely recommend Ender's Game to any science fiction fan. The book doesn't seem to be that complicated or very challenging so I don't believe it is suited for much older people and maybe people in middle school or early high school.