Monday, April 1

book talk: ender's game

You know that whole, "Don't just a book by its cover," philosophy?  Well, I am shameless book-cover judgee.  It's one of the main reasons I hadn't read Ender's Game until this weekend.  For years I had heard people rave about it but just never picked it up; had it been plain black with a simple title, I may have been more inclined to give it a chance.  [The cover gives me Tron flashbacks and I haaaaated that movie.  With vigor.]

Anyway.  A plethora of my students are ardent Ender's Game enthusiasts and consistently harangued me about reading the book until I gave in.  And I'm happy to report that their enthusiasm is well-founded.  [Although unfounded enthusiasm is fine by me, too.]

The premise in a few words: Intergalactic war.  Child prodigy.  Brainwashing.  

One more confession: I judge covers and [less harshly] genres.  My go-to genre is contemporary realistic fiction.  I can't get enough.  I like that it plays by the rules: real people, real issues.  Sometimes fantasy and science fiction turn me off because anything goes.  If they fancy a magical sword, it appears.  If the princess is boring--give her a special power.  If they want time travel, sure, why not?  

BUT Orson Scott Card is a smart writer.  He created rules for his world and played by them.  And his novel addresses more than future scientific and technological advances; there's a variety of psychological and moral issues that can be unpacked, too.  Which I just realized makes you want to read this book less, not more [unless you're like me and really like talking about psychology?  And morality?].  What you should take away is this: Ender's Game is a solid, enticing read.  And it tends to appeal to male readers, who are typically harder to engage.  So good on ya, Orson!


Coming up: Variant and An Abundance of Katherines.  I've been a reading fool, lately.  I finished Ender's Game Saturday, Variant Sunday, and am working on An Abundance of Katherines [written by John Green, maybe my favorite YA literature author of late?].  Hallelujah I'm reading for fun again.  College was one big read-for-fun hiatus.  


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