Ender’s Shadow by Orson Scott Card (SPOILERS)

So I didn’t write a review of last month’s book club pick Ender’s Game because I felt it was so popular and I didn’t think that I had anything strong to say about it given so much has already been said. Book club got a little dramatic because we drastically disagreed on the differences between the Wiggins.

However, this month’s book was Ender’s Shadow, being about Bean I was pretty excited to read it as he is a fan favorite. He was like a more confident Ender that always a step behind. I ended up giving this book 3 STARS! I ended up being kinda disappointed with my overall feelings of the world after reading this book.

Things I liked:

So firstly, I love the world of the Academies, military, and the Buggers. I really enjoyed in this book learning about the slums and the parallel’s drawn between the poor and opportunity to serve. I liked the gangs and Bean learning from such a young age of different types of leadership and fear and fighting from Poke and Achilles. Secondly, I felt it kept most of the characters in character which is  hard to do in such a delayed spin-off. While I didn’t always like the actions of Graff I didn’t doubt that it was the same man. Thirdly, I loved the discovery of Bean’s family and Carlotta’s persistence to care for him parallel to Graff for Ender. It was a sweet story and I really liked Bean’s family in comparison to the Wiggins’

Things that were off putting:

I was really put-off and it greatly lowered my rating was the undermining of Ender’s Game. Ender’s feats were managed and set up by Bean. Valentine’s protection of Ender was set up by Bean. The academy used Bean as a back-up for Ender instead of rewarding him as commander as a result of passing every test and battle. It really changed my perspective of Ender and what he does, his brain. I really wish that those small parts had been taken out because I liked all of the story but where Bean supports up Ender’s story.

Ender’s Shadow feels like the wrong name, he didn’t shadow Ender but was like a mirror to him.

I still recommend Ender’s Game I think it was a feat of science-fiction. I think Ender’s Shadow was good but will diminish your enjoyment of the first.



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