WARNING: Ripping Book Reviews are solely the judgments of Professor VJ Duke on an unlucky book that has caused him much repulsion—in one way or another. Therefore, blame must be put on the professor and nobody else. With that in mind, read on—if you are brave enough to take it.
Here is a book.
A book badly in need of a ripping.
But, see, that’s the thing: every book needs a ripping.
Even professorish favorites.
Yes, they need a ripping too.
So, here is a ripping.
Ender’s Game is about…abuse.
Yes, I fear that’s right. It’s about child abuse.
You see, it’s about lying to poor Ender Wiggin–the main character.
But even I might lie to a kid who is as scary, smart, and mean as Ender Wiggin. (I might lie to him, too, just because of the name–but that’s a different story for a different time.)
As I was saying, Ender is rather mean.
This is how he beats up a bully:
…Ender kicked out high and hard, catching Stilson square in the breastbone. He dropped. …Stilson (the bully) lay motionless. …Ender knew the unspoken rules of manly warfare, even though he was only six. It was forbidden to strike an opponent who lay helpless…So Ender walked to Stilson’s supine body and kicked him again, viciously, in the ribs. Ender walked around him and kicked him again…
Rather wicked for a six-year-old, you must admit.
Okay, so storyline:
This books is about an alien invasion. Or something like that.
Only the aliens aren’t called aliens; they’re called buggers.
Because they look like ants, I think.
Now all of mankind was attacked by the aliens at some point in the book’s distant past.
But the aliens were defeated. Then they went away.
However, that doesn’t ease the minds of the nervous commanders at the Battle School.
The aliens will return; they’re sure of it.
So, they recruit six-year-olds (after torturing them for some time with some strange gadget attached to their necks that we really never learn about) to come to Battle School.
Which is in space somewhere, but we’re not sure where.
Now, that’s an interest.
Anyway, Ender is recruited.
And he gets abused by the commanders, fellow recruities, and himself. Interestingly enough, though, Ender becomes the best at winning skirmishes at the Battle School.
So, he gets promoted and gets to train with Mazer Rackham, who supposedly beat the aliens once upon a time.
Day after day, Ender goes and controls (from a computer, I think) a representation of earth’s fleet as they battle aliens. Mazer controls the aliens.
It turns out, though, that this is no representation. Ender was, in fact, really commanding earth’s fleet. He learns this after he crushes the aliens completely.
He was impossibly lied to.
Of course, he feels bad about the whole thing. Really bad.
I would, too, if I just killed all the aliens that were threatening earth, wouldn’t you? I hope so. Otherwise, you must not be thinking right.
We should all feel bad when ant-like aliens die.
Anyway, after all that, Ender goes to live on the old alien planet. While there, he finds an alien larvae with a message from the aliens (probably put together before they died). Loosly translated this is what it says:
“Ender, my man, we didn’t know mankind was sentient when we were attacking you. Our mistake. That’s why we left. But tell you what, since we can’t communicate with you guys at all, once you destroy us, would you please help hatch this larvae so we can live again? It would be appreciated. Plus, we’ll be peaceful this time.”
Ender agrees and the book ends with him finding a suitable place for the larvae.
I say, no ant-like alien deserves to live if it was beaten by a kid with anger mangement problems under the age of 12.
But what do I know.
I’m a human not an alien.