The ender quintet, p.1
The Ender Quintet, p.1
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Tor Books by Orson Scott Card
Note: Within series, books are best read in listed order.
Ender Wiggin: The finest general the world could hope to find or breed.
Ender in Exile
Speaker for the Dead
Children of the Mind
Ender’s Shadow Series
Parallel storylines to Ender’s Game from Bean: Ender’s right hand, his strategist, and his friend.
Shadow of the Hegemon
Shadow of the Giant
Shadows in Flight
The First Formic War Series
One hundred years before Ender’s Game, the aliens arrived on Earth with fire and death. These are the stories of the First Formic War.
A War of Gifts
The Authorized Ender Companion by Jake Black
A complete and in-depth encyclopedia of all the persons, places, things, and events in Orson Scott Card’s Ender Universe.
THE MITHER MAGES SERIES
Danny North is different from his magical family. And when he discovers his gift, it is greater than he ever imagined—which could earn him a death sentence.
The Lost Gate
The Gate Thief
THE TALES OF ALVIN MAKER SERIES
Visit the magical America that might have been, marvel as the tale of Alvin Maker unfolds.
The Crystal City
Earth has been rendered uninhabitable. But it is still vital.
The Memory of Earth
The Call of Earth
The Ships of Earth
WOMEN OF GENESIS SERIES
Fiction exploring the human side of Biblical women.
Rachel & Leah
THE COLLECTED SHORT FICTION OF ORSON SCOTT CARD
Experience Card’s full versatility, from science fiction to fantasy, from traditional narrative poetry to modern experimental fiction.
Keeper of Dreams
The Changed Man
Hart’s Hope: dark and powerful fantasy.
Lovelock (with Kathryn Kidd): a startling look at the ethics of bioengineering.
Pastwatch: In this novel of time travel, can the past be changed?
Saints: a novel of the early days of the Mormon Church.
Songmaster: an SF classic and a haunting story of power and love.
The Worthing Saga: the tale of a seed ship sent out to save the human race.
Wyrms: the story of a young woman’s journey to confront her destiny, and her world’s.
The Folk of the Fringe: when America is destroyed, it’s up to those on the fringes to rebuild.
Tor Books by Orson Scott Card
6. The Giant’s Drink
9. Locke and Demosthenes
11. Veni Vidi Vici
14. Ender’s Teacher
15. Speaker for the Dead
SPEAKER FOR THE DEAD
Some People of Lusitania Colony
Pronouncing Foreign Names
7. The Ribeira House
8. Dona Ivanova
9. Congenital Defect
10. Children of the Mind
16. The Fence
17. The Wives
18. The Hive Queen
1 - A PARTING
2 - A MEETING
3 - CLEAN HANDS
4 - JANE
5 - THE LUSITANIA FLEET
6 - VARELSE
7 - SECRET MAID
8 - MIRACLES
9 - PINEHEAD
10 - MARTYR
11 - THE JADE OF MASTER HO
12 - GREGO’S WAR
13 - FREE WILL
14 - VIRUS MAKERS
15 - LIFE AND DEATH
16 - VOYAGE
17 - ENDER’S CHILDREN
18 - THE GOD OF PATH
CHILDREN OF THE MIND
1. “I’m Not Myself”
2. “You Don’t Believe in God”
3. “There Are Too Many of Us”
4. “I Am a Man of Perfect Simplicity!”
5. “Nobody Is Rational”
6. “Life Is a Suicide Mission”
7. “I Offer Her This Poor Old Vessel”
8. “What Matters Is Which Fiction You Believe”
9. “It Smells Like Life to Me”
10. “This Has Always Been Your Body”
11. “You Called Me Back from Darkness”
12. “Am I Betraying Ender?”
13. “Till Death Ends All Surprises”
14. “How They Communicate with Animals”
15. “We’re Giving You a Second Chance”
16. “How Do You Know They Aren’t Quivering in Terror?”
17. “The Road Goes On without Him Now”
ENDER IN EXILE
ORSON SCOTT CARD
“Card understands the human condition and has things of real value to say about it. He tells the truth well—ultimately the only criterion of greatness. Ender’s Game will still be finding new readers when ninety-nine percent of the books published this year are completely forgotten.”
“A gripping tale of adventure in space and a scathing indictment of the military mind. Recommended.”
“The games are fierce and consistently exciting. The cast… offers memorable characters…. And the aliens leave an intriguing heritage to mankind.”
This is a work of fiction. All the characters and events portrayed in this book are fictitious, and any resemblance to real people or events is purely coincidental.
Copyright © 1977, 1985, 1991 by Orson Scott Card
Introduction copyright © 1991 by Orson Scott Card. First published in Phoenix Rising.
All rights reserved, including the right to reproduce this book, or portions thereof, in any form.
A Tor Book
Published by Tom Doherty Associates, LLC
49 West 24th Street
New York, NY 10010
Tor® is a registered trademark of Tom Doherty Associates, LLC.
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Card, Orson Scott.
Ender’s Game / Orson Scott Card.
“A Tom Doherty Associates book.”
ISBN 0-312-93208-1 (hc)
who makes me remember
how young and how old
children can be
Portions of this book were recounted in my first published science fiction story, “Ender’s Game,” in the August 1977 Analog, edited by Ben Bova; his faith in me and this story are the foundation of my career.
Harriet McDougal of Tor is that rarest of editors—one who understands a story and can help the author make it exactly what he meant it to be. They don’t pay her enough. Harriet’s task was made more than a little easier, however, because of the excellent work of my resident editor, Kristine Card. I don’t pay her enough, either.
I am grateful also to Barbara Bova, who has been my friend and agent through thin and, sometimes, thick; and to Tom Doherty, my publisher, who let me talk him into doing this book at the ABA in Dallas, which shows either his superb judgment or how weary one can get at a convention.
It makes me a little uncomfortable, writing an introduction to Ender’s Game. After all, the book has been in print for six years now, and in all that time, nobody has ever written to me to say, “You know, Ender’s Game was a pretty good book, but you know what it really needs? An introduction!” And yet when a novel goes back to print for a new hardcover edition, there ought to be something new in it to mark the occasion (something besides the minor changes as I fix the errors and internal contradictions and stylistic excesses that have bothered me ever since the novel first appeared). So be assured—the novel stands on its own, and if you skip this intro and go straight to the story, I not only won’t stand in your way, I’ll even agree with you!
The novelet “Ender’s Game” was my first published science fiction. It was based on an idea—the Battle Room—that came to me when I was sixteen years old. I had just read Isaac Asimov’s Foundation trilogy, which was (more or less) an extrapolation of the ideas in Gibbon’s Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, applied to a galaxy-wide empire in some far future time.
The novel set me, not to dreaming, but to thinking, which is Asimov’s most extraordinary ability as a fiction writer. What would the future be like? How would things change? What would remain the same? The premise of Foundation seemed to be that even though you might change the props and the actors, the play of human history is always the same. And yet that fundamentally pessimistic premise (you mean we’ll never change?) was tempered by Asimov’s idea of a group of human beings who, not through genetic change, but through learned skills, are able to understand and heal the minds of other people.
It was an idea that rang true with me, perhaps in part because of my Mormon upbringing and beliefs: Human beings may be miserable specimens, in the main, but we can learn, and, through learning, become decent people.
Those were some of the ideas that played through my mind as I read Foundation, curled on my bed—a thin mattress on a slab of plywood, a bed my father had made for me—in my basement bedroom in our little rambler on 650 East in Orem, Utah. And then, as so many science fiction readers have done over the years, I felt a strong desire to write stories that would do for others what Asimov’s story had done for me.
In other genres, that desire is usually expressed by producing thinly veiled rewrites of the great work: Tolkien’s disciples far too often simply rewrite Tolkien, for example. In science fiction, however, the whole point is that the ideas are fresh and startling and intriguing; you imitate the great ones, not by rewriting their stories, but rather by creating stories that are just as startling and new.
But new in what way? Asimov was a scientist, and approached every field of human knowledge in a scientific manner—assimilating data, combining it in new and startling ways, thinking through the implications of each new idea. I was no scientist, and unlikely ever to be one, at least not a real scientist—not a physicist, not a chemist, not a biologist, not even an engineer. I had no gift for mathematics and no great love for it, either. Though I relished the study of logic and languages, and virtually inhaled histories and biographies, it never occurred to me at the time that these were just as valid sources of science fiction stories as astronomy or quantum mechanics.
How, then, could I possibly come up with a science fiction idea? What did I actually know about anything?
At that time my older brother Bill was in the army, stationed at Fort Douglas in Salt Lake City; he was nursing a hip-to-heel cast from a bike-riding accident, however, and came home on weekends. It was then that he had met his future wife, Laura Dene Low, while attending a church meeting on the BYU campus; and it was Laura who gave me Foundation to read. Perhaps, then, it was natural for my thoughts to turn to things military.
To me, though, the military didn’t mean the Vietnam War, which was then nearing its peak of American involvement. I had no experience of that, except for Bill’s stories of the miserable life in basic training, the humiliation of officer’s candidate school, and his lonely but in many ways successful life as a noncom in Korea. Far more deeply rooted in my mind was my experience, five or six years earlier, of reading Bruce Catton’s three-volume Army of the Potomac. I remembered so well the stories of the commanders in that war—the struggle to find a Union general capable of using McClellan’s magnificent army to defeat Lee and Jackson and Stuart, and then, finally, Grant, who brought death to far too many of his soldiers, but also made their deaths mean something, by grinding away at Lee, keeping him from dancing and maneuvering out of reach. It was because of Catton’s history that I had stopped enjoying chess, and had to revise the rules of Risk in order to play it—I had come to understand something of war, and not just because of the conclusions Catton himself had reached. I found meanings of my own in that history.
I learned that history is shaped by the use of power, and that different people, leading the same army, with, therefore, approximately the same power, applied it so differently that the army seemed to change from a pack of noble fools at Fredericksburg to panicked cowards melting away at Chancellorsville, then to the grimly determined, stubborn soldiers who held the ridges at Gettysburg, and then, finally, to the disciplined, professional army that ground Lee to dust in Grant’s long campaign. It wasn’t the soldiers who changed. It was the leader. And even though I could not then have articulated what I understood of military leadership, I knew that I did understand it. I understood, at levels deeper than speech, how a great military leader imposes his will on his enemy, and makes his own army a willing extension of himself.
So one morning, as my Dad drove me to Brigham Young High School along Carterville Road in the heavily wooded bottoms of the Provo River, I wondered: How would you train soldiers for combat in the future? I didn’t bother thinking of new land-based weapons systems—what was on my mind, after Foundation, was space. Soldiers and commanders would have to think very differently in space, because the old ideas of up and down simply wouldn’t apply anymore. I had read in Nordhoff’s and Hall’s history of World War I flying that it was very hard at first for new pilots to learn to look above and below them rather than merely to the right and left, to find the enemy approaching them in the air. How much worse, then, would it be to learn to think with no up and down at all?
The essence of training is to allow error without consequence. Three-dimensional warfare would need to be practiced in an enclosed space, so mistakes wouldn’t send trainees flying off to Jupiter. It would need to offer a way to practice shooting without risk of injury; and yet trainees who were “hit” would need to be disabled, at least temporarily. The environment would need to be changeable, to simulate the different conditions of warfare—near a ship, in the midst of debris, near tiny asteroids. And it would need to have some of the confusion of real battle, so that the play-combat didn’t evolve into something as rigid and formal as the meaningless marching and maneuvers that still waste an astonishing amount of a trainee’s precious hours in basic training in our modern military.
The result of my speculations that morning was the Battle Room, exactly as you will see it (or have already seen it) in this book. It was a good idea, and something like it will certainly be used for training if ever there is a manned military in space. (Something very much like it has already been used in various amusement halls throughout America.)
But, having thought of the Battle Room, I hadn’t the faintest idea of how to go about turning the idea into a story. It occurred to me then for the first time that the idea of the story is nothing compared to the importance of knowing how to find a character and a story to tell around that idea. Asimov, having had the idea of paralleling The Decline and Fall, still had no story; his genius—and the soul of the story—came when he personalized his history, making the psychohistorian Hari Seldon the god-figure, the plan-maker, the apocalyptic prophet of the story. I had no such character, and no idea of how to make one.
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