I'm sure somewhere on these massive forums something has been posted like this, but I'm having a hard time finding it and it's late, so I'm sorry.
I started reading Ender's Game in 7th grade. I saw it on my teacher's desk and was intrigued by the cover (the one with the fighter craft, or perhaps it was a shuttle; irrelevant). I asked him if I could borrow it, and he lent it to me for a week. I normally will read through books within a few days if they interest me; a Tom Clancy book could take me three, a Harry Potter four or five. I read Ender's Game in five hours. I literally devoured the book, and re-read it four times before I had to give it back. I read it so often that when a classmate asked for help on the book, I was able to give chapter references and a basic outline of that chapter without having read it for about 2 years. I found so many things that I enjoyed about this book; the idea of complete victory, so you would never be hurt again; the way Ender treated his launchmates, fellow soldiers, his soldiers, and eventually his Jeesh with respect and love. Perhaps things I'll never need in life (I hope I never have to win a fight that way), but things that either shaped or resounded with my beliefs. It even influenced my online life; almost every site that I'm on, my alias is AlphaEnder (a play on Alpha and Omega). I came to love this book.
I continued on to read the rest of the series. I wept with Andrew when the piggies told Miro and Ouanda who he actually was. I felt joy when the Hive Queen was restored. When Jane was sentenced to her death, I felt pity for Miro. I understood the anger of Novinha when Andrew woke up to Jane whispering in his jewel. I knew the joy that Quim felt when he passed and saw Christ on the right hand of God. Andrew's disgust with Peter sprung from his nightmares, his worry about bringing Young Val into the world to torment Old Val, everything in this series. For me, these characters took on life; they weren't just words on a page. It takes a very rare writer for me to feel this way.
As I read through the Shadow series, I loved seeing how Bean grew up in the world. He was harder to love then Ender ever was, but he was a character I could also see as living instead of just ink. Seeing not only Peter's amazing manipulations, but his downfalls too...it made him real. How his parents always loved him, not just Ender, not just Valentine.
So, yes, I'm a little obsessive. Okay, more than a little. I guess what I'm trying to say is this: thank you Mr. Card. I picked up your book expecting a simple read, and it has evolved into something far more than that; into a breathing, living universe.