Ender is Earth’s only hope against an aggressive alien species referred to as “Buggers.” Ender is sent to Battle School, where the best and brightest are trained to take out these aggressive aliens once and for all. Ender is…only six years old.
People have been buzzing about “Ender’s Game,” by Orson Scott Card, due to the movie coming out on November 1st. The truth is, this story has been around since 1985 (and even before that as a short story) and is still rising in popularity! And while Ender is only six, his genius level makes him talk, act, and think like a teen or adult throughout the story. Don’t expect these characters to be treated like kids—the anti-gravity battles, the strategy games, and the team organizations are all in preparation for a potentially brutal battle against the Buggers.
While this book has all the benchmarks of a standard sci-fi novel, it contains a lot of real issues for today’s teens, too. The author examines Ender’s struggle of isolation, his attempts to control his aggression, and how he copes with the resentment others feel at his perfection. Other in-depth themes include what makes a monster and how politics can be easily manipulated (in this case, by a couple of super-genius children).
“Ender’s Game” lets all of us—children, teens, and adults—dream of what it might be like to battle aliens in space. And while the premise may seem over the top, the subject matter is as deep as space itself. At the heart of it is a story about how society uses special children, and what the end result of that means for Earth. As one character points out in the novel, “They have a word for people our age. They call us children and they treat us like mice.” Read this book and find out what happens when small children are tasked with saving the human race.