Has anyone here read any Orson Scott Card? A student of mine was nuts about the Enders books, and I was wondering what you guys think. Which book is first? Should I even bother?
I would have posted this in "books" but I could not access that Topic from the Topics screen for some reason.
By Alan Au (Itsatrap) on Thursday, July 19, 2001 - 02:27 pm:
The first book (Ender's Game) should be required reading. The other books (Speaker for the Dead, Xenocide, Children of the Mind) are a bit wacky, kind of like the Dune books.
I haven't read Ender's Shadow yet, although I understand it's more in the same vein as Ender's Game.
By Bub (Bub) on Thursday, July 19, 2001 - 03:57 pm:
When I interviewed Brian Reynolds for SM Alpha Centauri he cited "Ender's Game" as an inspiration. Along with Asimov and S.R. Donaldson's Gap Trilogy (which is excellent sci-fi, btw).
I meant to read Ender's ever since then. But haven't. Anyway, thought I'd pop in to name drop...
By Jason Levine on Thursday, July 19, 2001 - 04:31 pm:
The SMAC manual also cites "The Mote in God's Eye" as an inspiration, but I guess its influence shows up more in SMACX than the original game.
I love game manual's with literary references. The most impressive one I can recall is Imperialism whose manual included a reference to Massie's "Dreadnought," a book which took me almost as long to read as BG2 did to play. =)
By XtienMurawski on Thursday, July 19, 2001 - 07:02 pm:
I liked "Mote in God's Eye" but thought it was Niven and Pournelle for some reason.
By Jason Levine on Thursday, July 19, 2001 - 09:30 pm:
Amanour, you thought correctly. I was just pointing out that, in the manual, Reynolds had also cited "Mote" as influence on SMAC, but, except in a very generalized way (the fungus and the artifacts) the influence really didn't show up in the game until the Crossfire expansion.
By William Harms on Thursday, July 19, 2001 - 11:54 pm:
Ender's Game is an excellent book and has one of sci-fi's best endings. It's a must read.
After Ender's Game came Speaker for the Dead and Xenocide, both of which were pretty sub-par in my opinion, especially Xenocide.
Another great sci-fi book that falls in the "must read" category is Mockingbird, by Walter Tevis.
By Aszurom on Friday, July 20, 2001 - 12:19 am:
I just finished "Speaker for the Dead". Personally, I like it quite a bit. That and Xenocide (which I'm currently in the midst of) are about the discovery that the Descolada virus is actually a sentient terraforming mechanism. I REALLY thought the lifecycle of the Pequinos and how it ties into the function of the virus was a stroke of genius on Card's part. Yeah, the books are a little slow but the philosophy behind it all intrigues me enough to read them.
Another sci-fi suggestion of mine is Cherryh's "Foreigner". I liked Mote quite a bit... never did read the sequel to it. What's it about?
By the way, if anybody wants all the Dune, Ender, and a few other series - I have them in ebook format. :-)
By BobM on Friday, July 20, 2001 - 10:57 am:
Anyway, I'll third or fourth or whatever we are up to on Ender's Game. I can't really recommend Ender's Shadow. It is a "parallel" novel and simply retells the story of Ender's Game from another character's POV. I didn't find it particuluary worth my time.
On the subject of Orson Scott Card: this guy tells a great story. He tends not to be able to end them well though. His series go on endlessly. If you don't need resolution in your series I recommend reading Card's Tales of Alvin Maker, which starts with Seventh Son.
By XtienMurawski on Friday, July 20, 2001 - 12:39 pm:
Any Greg Bear fans out there?
By Dean on Friday, July 20, 2001 - 01:54 pm:
I loved Ender's Game, liked the others. I read them probably 5 years ago, and, for the life of me, I can't seem to remember how the saga ends. From my lack of memory I can infer that they don't end particularly well.
Ender's Shadow was a great book for people who read and loved Ender's Game years ago and want to re-experience the story without rereading the book. (If that makes any sense.)
As for SMAC influences, check out Kim Stanley Robinson's Mars books: Red Mars, Green Mars, and Blue Mars. They trace the future history of Mars from the first 100 colonists through successive eras of terraforming. The SMAC faction characters have remarkably similar qualities to some of the characters in these books.
By William Harms on Sunday, July 22, 2001 - 11:30 pm:
All this talk about sci-fi reminded me of a book that I read when I was in junior high. (It was also serialized as a comic in Boy's Life magazine.) It was about aliens that took over the planet; the aliens traveled in these machines that were half-domes on top and powered by three legs.
That's about all I can remember. Anyone know the name of the book?
By Bub (Bub) on Sunday, July 22, 2001 - 11:37 pm:
This may be too obvious, but that description is a dead ringer for:
War of the Worlds
by HG Wells
But it was London they were trying to take over in that book...
By Bernie Dy on Monday, July 23, 2001 - 11:02 am:
Oh, yeah, I remember that comic on Boy's Life...it wasn't War of the Worlds, but some other very popular sf book. I don't recall the author's name, but I want to say Christopher was either the first or last name...
By Lee Johnson (Lee_johnson) on Monday, July 23, 2001 - 02:05 pm:
I had a girlfriend back in high school who was into this series as well. I remember her reading The City of Gold and Lead. The author is John Christopher.
The series is collected in one volume: The Tripods
By Rob Funk (Xaroc) on Monday, July 23, 2001 - 04:53 pm:
I read that series! It was a long time ago though so I can't remember much about it. I do remember I liked it quite a bit.
By Aszurom on Monday, July 23, 2001 - 07:53 pm:
I've got a copy of "The White Mountains" sitting right here in fact.
By Sandi Gillan on Friday, August 3, 2001 - 03:42 am:
I'm the girlfriend from highschool, eh? I vaguely remember the series. I was in grade 8 when I read it. I always remember the scrap piece of metal that read "Lect City," that told the reader what was lost.
By Rob on Friday, August 3, 2001 - 11:25 am:
I always get the Tripod series mixed up with the Day of the Triffids book. I've never read either, but I think I'm going to give the Tripods a read (they look quick and painless).
By William Harms on Sunday, August 5, 2001 - 01:23 pm:
Thanks for your help, Lee. (And everyone else.) I've been trying to remember the names of those books for ten years now.