#67 – Speaker for the Dead by Orson Scott Card (My 100 Favorite Books)


Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game is a fast-paced novel filled with battles and action.  In it we meet Ender, a wonderkid trained to lead the human species in war against an alien race that has invaded our planet, and will again if we don’t attack them first.  Essentially there is nothing special about such a story, that is, until the last few pages when Ender learns things are more complex than simply good humans vs. bad aliens.

The sequel to Ender’s Game is Speaker for the Dead.  It takes place 3,000 years later though Ender has only aged a few decades due to spending much time traveling at near the speed of light which slows down his aging.  Speaker for the Dead is a very different book from its predecessor.  While Ender’s Game could be qualified as “young adult” literature, Speaker for the Dead is more challenging.  It is slower and includes a lot of discussion about morality and religion.  In my opinion, it is a much better book.

The two sequels that follow Speaker for the Dead are both good, but it is with this one that the series of four (I know Card has written other books that tie in) reaches its height.

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