Oct 11, 2007
Johannesburg, SA
G'day all. I picked up Xenocide to complete the "Ender trilogy", I really liked Ender's Game and sort of liked SftD even though it was a slow book. How is Xenocide? My friend says it is more pacy like book 1 than 2 and more action and just as good a story.
Although Xenocide isn't one of the best in the bunch, the whole series is pretty good, if (and this is a big if) you can accept the premise of Ender saving the whole of humanity in the first book, then spending the rest of his life regretting having done so. I have trouble with that.

I enjoyed Ender's Game. I loved the training exercises and games, the notebook puzzles, his amazing talent for survival at all costs. I was much less thrilled with what I think of as Ender's Apology (the rest of the series).
I haven't read Xenocide yet but I've recently finished reading "Speaker for the Dead" and I thought it was very good and the logical direction to take the series in after what happens in "Ender's Game".
Rand said:
...if (and this is a big if) you can accept the premise of Ender saving the whole of humanity in the first book, then spending the rest of his life regretting having done so. I have trouble with that.
Why is that so hard to accept? He was groomed from birth, put through a rigerous (and potentially fatal) training programme and essentially tricked into wiping out the "Buggers", only to find out afterwards that they weren't actually trying to wipe us out and that it was just a problem of communication and understanding? Wouldn't he feel a dreadful and bitter remorse at that? Wouldn't you if you were in a similar situation? He found out that he didn't actually save humanity and had wiped out the only other sentient species we had encountered for nothing.

"Speaker for the Dead" was interesting because it depicts a completely different approach to first contact with a new alien, sentient species. Almost a diametrically opposite approach to the "Buggers", perhaps going too far the other way. I thought it was a very good way to follow up "Ender's Game" and I can only hope that "Xenocide" is as good.
As I've said in a few different threads around, I much preferred Speaker for the Dead, Xenocide and Children of the Mind to Ender's Game. I did enjoy EG too, but to me they hardly seem part of the same series. I see EG as a sort of launching point for OSC to explore different themes through the various series that spin off it. Speaker and the others are obviously much more philosophy- than action-based, which I found unexpectedly enjoyable (I haven't read many books like that before).

In my mind, Speaker, Xenocide and Children sort of blur together - I'd say if you didn't like Speaker as much as EG, you'll probably feel the same way about the other two. But I'd still highly recommend them. I haven't read the Ender's Shadow series (about Bean from EG), but I get the sense that they're more like EG than the others. Maybe you should give those a go too.

Interesting insights. If I were to rate OSC's Ender's books, I would start at Ender's Game and with each book following a little less. I have said it before, and I will say it again. This is the one modern book which I am sure that they will still be reading 100 years from now.

If I were to rank books from 1-10, I would give Ender's Game 10; Speaker for the Dead 8, Xenocide 7. After reading several of the Songs from Distant Earth books, probably because I was so enamored with Ender's Game and Song Bird, and hoping that I would run across a diamond like those, I found out that the Distant Earth series was a big joke on the readers being drawn from the book of Mormon. After that I just couldn't get myself to read any more OSC books.
Yeah - same with the Alvin Maker series, Parson. That coupled with some of OSC's social views mean that I'm not really inclined to read any of his other books. Or at least, I definitely won't be paying for them.
Ok, so I will get a copy of Xenocide then. I did really like Enders Game and Speaker was very different, more of a character story. So hopefully Xeno will be as good.
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