Favorite Scene Saturdays: the brilliance of Orson Scott Card

One of my favorite books — if not my favorite — is Ender’s Game. The way Orson Scott Card wrote Ender is the way I desire to know, love, and write my own characters. Because Ender breathes off the page. Breathes with love, anger, pain. You feel everything he feels. Experience everything he experiences. It’s moving. So much so that I’ve cried each time I’ve read this book. Every emotion is touched. All from a genius kid, playing games up in space.

“The observers behind him began to cough, to move nervously. They were beginning to realize that Ender didn’t know what to do.

I don’t care anymore, thought Ender. You can keep your game. If you won’t even give me a chance, why should I play?

Like his last game in Battle School, when they put two armies against him.

And just as he remembered that game, apparently Bean remembered it, too, for his voice came over the headset, saying, ‘Remember, the enemy’s gate is down.’

Molo, Soup, Vlad, Dumper, and Crazy Tom all laughed. They remembered, too.

And Ender also laughed. It was funny. The adults taking all this so seriously, and the children playing along, playing along, believing it too until suddenly the adults went too far, tried too hard, and the children could see through their game. Forget it, Mazer. I don’t care if I pass your test, I don’t care if I follow your rules. If you can cheat, so can I. I won’t let you beat me unfairly–I’ll beat you unfairly first.

In that final battle in Battle School, he had won by ignoring the enemy, ignoring his own losses; he had moved against the enemy’s gate.

And the enemy’s gate was down.

If I break this rule, they’ll never let me be a commander. It would be too dangerous. I’ll never have to play a game again. And that is victory.”


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