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» Hatrack River Forum » Active Forums » Discussions About Orson Scott Card » Order to read Ender/Bean series?

   
Author Topic: Order to read Ender/Bean series?
MEE4877
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So I bought Ender's game and the rest of the series about Ender (Speaker, Xeno, Children) as well as the Bean series (Ender's Shadow, Shadow Hegemon, Shadow Puppets, Shadow of the Giant).

In what order should I read them?

Obviously I should start with Ender's game but then what next? Finish the rest of the Ender series and then read the Bean series?, go straight through the Bean series and then finish the Ender series?, or mix the two series?

Is there any chronological overlap between the two series? Advice please! [Smile]

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ketchupqueen
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Personally, I prefer to go straight through the Ender books, then straight through the Bean books. The Ender books are better to me, that way. The Ender books spread over quite a span of time, while sequels to the Bean books come one right after the other, pretty much. The first book of each series takes place in roughly the same time. (Personally I like the Bean books better, but that's completely a personal preference. But I think that going through each series individually gives you more of a chance to appreciate them both.)
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Dagonee
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I agree - Ender, Speaker, Xenocide, Children and then the Bean books.

There are parts of the Bean book that are only interesting because they explain something the reader already knows.

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Xann.
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I would read, Ender's Game, Ender's Shadow, Ender books, then Bean books.

The first two are my favorite, and i think they are best when read together.

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Steve_G
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First time through I'd read them in order of publication (Enders Game --> Ender series, Ender's Shadow--> Bean series, then First Meetings). Second time through read them chronologically. Third time read them in any order you feel like. At least that's how I did it.
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CRash
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I am agreeing with most -- order of publication, Ender books and then Bean books. Although I did read Ender's Shadow before the separate Ender quartet, but I don't think it really matters.
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adfectio
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EG series then ES series gives you the best feel for how OSC developed as a writer. The final EG books have a deeper feel than those of ES, so if thats what you're looking for, I'd read those first.
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happysmiley
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The usual order would be Ender Books, then Bean books. But i've always wondered what it would've been like to read the Bean books first. Maybe you wouldn't mind trying a different order and then telling the rest of us about it. It would be interesting to see if there were any holes in the Bean series that Ender's Game readers filled in subconsciously but might stand out to someone who hadn't had previous exposure.

So if you're up to doing that, this would be the order:

Ender's Shadow, Shadow of the Hegemon, Shadow Puppets, Shadow of the Giant, Ender's Game, Speaker for the Dead, Xenocide, Children of the Mind.

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BlueWizard
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This subject comes up from time to time and I will say what I always say -

Read 'Enders Game' then read 'Enders Shadow', then finish which ever series appeals to you most at the moment.

You can get through the 'Shadow' series pretty quickly, but the continuing 'Ender Saga' is very intriguing. So, it is simply a matter of preference. The 'Shadow' series is more political intrigue; dealing with the state of the earth-side world after the Formic Wars. The 'Ender Sage' is more philosophical, dealing more with the internal landscape, and human interpersonal relationships, though it has its share of politics.


The Shadow Series, in order, is -

Ender's Shadow
Shadow of the Hegemon
Shadow Puppets
Shadow of the Giant

The Ender Sage, in order, is -

Ender's Game
Speaker for the Dead
Xenocide
Children of the Mind

But again, read "Ender Game" then "Enders Shadow", then continue on with the series that most appeals to you at that moment. When finished with that, go on to the other series.

Steve/bluewizard

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insomniakk
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This is the order I wish I read the books in...

First Meetings in Enders Universe
Enders Game
A war of Gifts
Enders Shadow
Shadow of the Hegemon
Shadow Puppets
Shadow of the Giant
(Ender in Exile)
Speaker for the Dead
Xenocide
Children of the Mind
(Shadows in Flight)

I cant wait for the New books, Please Give us some updates Mr. Card

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Steve_G
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I always read a series in the order of publication the first time around. After that (If I read it again) I will read it in any way that seems right.
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scifibum
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I wouldn't recommend reading "First Meetings" before Ender's Game or the Shadow series. FM has some enlightening revelations that I think would be harder to appreciate if you haven't already formed your impression of several of the characters from the previously-written novels.

Maybe it's just me, but I think Card's continued exploration of the Enderverse is NOT just milking every last drop from his early achievements*, and one of the main reasons is that he actually changes and enriches the story by providing different points of view on the same events. If you start with the changed story, then you'll have a harder time getting the value of revising/rediscovering your understanding of the events and characters. Even for the minor aspects of the novels that are illuminated by "First Meetings". JMHO.

*Not that there's anything wrong with that.

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neo-dragon
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I prefer publication order to chronological order, and "First Meetings" should definitely be read later on. Most of its stories take place first chronologically, but they have more significance if you know the characters.
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Lostinspace
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Ender's Game
A war of of Gifts
Speaker for the Dead
Xenocide
Children of the Mind
Ender's Shadow
Shadow of the Hegemon
Shadow Puppets
Shadow of the Giant
First Meetings

I think the A war of Gifts fits well in right after reading Ender's Game because you still feel very connected to Battle School. But First Meetings needs to be read later, it would be confusing to read any of it before and of the series. To much is disclosed that you learn later in the reading.

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CHeuer
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It doesn't really matter which series you read first, as they are written in a manner that you don't need to read one series to understand the other. They do work off each other in slight manners, but not to the point where its confusing if you don't' read them in the correct order.
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scottneb
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quote:
Originally posted by Lostinspace:

I think the A war of Gifts fits well in right after reading Ender's Game because you still feel very connected to Battle School. But First Meetings needs to be read later, it would be confusing to read any of it before and of the series. To much is disclosed that you learn later in the reading.

I think A War of Gifts was a little bit of a stretch by Mr. Card. It was good as a one-night read, it was interesting, but to say that it fits into the series in the chronological order of the books is really going out on a limb. The book is completely self contained, you don't have to know anything going into it and you really don't have to take anything from it.

Reading it is a intellectually-neutral act.

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Lostinspace
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quote:
Originally posted by scottneb:
quote:
Originally posted by Lostinspace:

I think the A war of Gifts fits well in right after reading Ender's Game because you still feel very connected to Battle School. But First Meetings needs to be read later, it would be confusing to read any of it before and of the series. To much is disclosed that you learn later in the reading.

I think A War of Gifts was a little bit of a stretch by Mr. Card. It was good as a one-night read, it was interesting, but to say that it fits into the series in the chronological order of the books is really going out on a limb. The book is completely self contained, you don't have to know anything going into it and you really don't have to take anything from it.

Reading it is a mentally-neutral act.

I am not saying you need to read it but I felt more connected to the other charcters in battle school right after reading Ender's Game then I did after reading the rest of the series. I enjoyed A war of Gift much better after I went back and reread Ender's Game and followed it directly after.
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masterpookie
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What order should I read the Ender's Game series in? I will tell you.
Read the Ender's Game series in this order.

This order is not the release date but the story from begging to end.

The first 5 are pre Ender's Game:

1. THE POLISH BOY
2. TEACHERS PEST
3. MAZER IN PRISON
4. CHEATER
5. PRETTY BOY
-----------
6. ENDER'S GAME
-----------
The next 3 take place during Ender's Game:

7. ENDER'S STOCKING
8. A WAR OF GIFTS: AN ENDER STORY
9. ENDER'S SHADOW
----------
The next next 2 books take place right after Ender's Game:

10. ENDER'S HOME COMING
11. A YOUNG MAN WITH PROSPECTS
----------
The next 3 books, because of "time dilation" should be read next:

12. SHADOW OF THE HEGEMON
13. SHADOW OF PUPPETS
14. SHADOW OF THE GIANT
----------
The next 3 books, because of "time dilation" take place simultaneously during the previous 3 books:

15: ENDER IN FLIGHT
16. ENDER IN EXILE
17. THE GOLD BUG
----------
The next 4 books should be read last and will take you far into the future:

18. INVESTMENT COUNSELOR
19. SPEAKER OF THE DEAD
20. XENOCIDE
21. CHILDREN OF THE MIND
----------
As of this post, these are all of the books that have been published in the Enderverse. If you read them in the order I just laid out for you, you will notice some over lap in the story. I'm sorry to say, it can't be helped.

The soon to be published book "SHADOWS IN FLIGHT" will fit in somewhere...
YOU'RE WELCOME [Smile]

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mr_porteiro_head
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Well, I guess that settles that. [Razz]
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HK
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This is all well and good but...... You would think someone could have updated this with the publishing of new books.
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screaminglemon
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quote:
Originally posted by HK:
This is all well and good but...... You would think someone could have updated this with the publishing of new books.

Here you go. an updated and fixed list.


chronological order.

The first Formic war:
----------------------
1. EARTH UNAWARE
2. EARTH AFIRE
3. EARTH AWAKENS (Not yet released)
----------------------

A wonderful bridge between the 1st Formic war and Ender's Saga:
-----------
4. MAZER IN PRISON* (Appears in Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show)
-----------

The story of Ender's parents:
-----------
5. THE POLISH BOY* (Appears in FIRST MEETINGS)
6. TEACHERS PEST* (Appears in FIRST MEETINGS)(Not present in 2002 version of book)
-----------

How Hot Soup and Bonzo were chosen for battle school.
-----------
7. CHEATER* (Appears in Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show)
8. PRETTY BOY* (Appears in Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show)
-----------

-----------
9. ENDER'S GAME
-----------

The next 2 take place during Ender's Game:
-----------
0**. A WAR OF GIFTS: AN ENDER STORY **
10. ENDER'S SHADOW
-----------

The next 3 books should be read next:
----------
11. SHADOW OF THE HEGEMON
12. SHADOW PUPPETS
13. SHADOW OF THE GIANT
----------

The next book, because of "time dilation" takes place simultaneously during the previous 3 books but

should be read after because it references the SHADOW books and wraps up a thread or two:
----------
14. ENDER IN EXILE
----------

15. SHADOWS IN FLIGHT

The next 4 books should be read last and will take you far into the future:
----------
16. INVESTMENT COUNSELOR* (Appears in FIRST MEETINGS)
17. SPEAKER OF THE DEAD
18. XENOCIDE
19. CHILDREN OF THE MIND
20. SHADOWS ALIVE (TBA. Not yet released)
-----------


*Short story.

**A WAR OF GIFTS, in my opinion, can and should be skipped all together. This is why I labeled it number 0. The story focuses on a brand new character, Zeck, who we've never seen before and will never see again. It does not push the series along in any way nor does it give further insight to established characters. In fact, It seems to contradict the other books in a way. Ender, in the few sceens he is in, is protrayed as a sort of jesus character. Very centered and present and self aware. Then theres the short story, ENDERS STOCKING, that is sort of wedged in to chapter 2. It halts and breaks the story for no apparent reason except maybe they both have christmas stockings in them. Speaking of which, this is simply a christmas story, so if you insist on reading it then forget about where it falls chronologically, and just pick it up in December.

***I left out some of the short stories because they were incorporated into full books.
ENDERS STOCKING (2007)(Appears in A WAR OF GIFTS)
ENDERS HOMECOMING (2008)(Appears in ENDER IN EXILE)
A YOUNG MAN WITH PROSPECTS (2007)(Appears in ENDER IN EXILE)
ENDER IN FLIGHT (2008)(Appears in ENDER IN EXILE)
THE GOLD BUG (2007)(Appears in ENDER IN EXILE)


If you prefer to read in order they were published...

9. ENDER'S GAME (1985)
17. SPEAKER OF THE DEAD (1986)
18. XENOCIDE (1991)
19. CHILDREN OF THE MIND (1996)
16. INVESTMENT COUNSELOR (May 1999) (Appears in FIRST MEETINGS 2002)
10. ENDER'S SHADOW (Sep 1999)
11. SHADOW OF THE HEGEMON (2001)
12. SHADOW PUPPETS (Aug 2002)
5. THE POLISH BOY (2002) (Appears in FIRST MEETINGS 2002)
6. TEACHERS PEST (2003) (Appears in FIRST MEETINGS 2002(Not present in 2002 version of book))
13. SHADOW OF THE GIANT (2005)
4. MAZER IN PRISON (2005) (Appears in Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show 2008)
8. PRETTY BOY (Mar 2006) (Appears in Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show 2008)
7. CHEATER (Oct 2006) (Appears in Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show 2008)
0. A WAR OF GIFTS: AN ENDER STORY (2007)
14. ENDER IN EXILE (2008)
15. SHADOWS IN FLIGHT (Jan 2012)
1. EARTH UNAWARE (Jul 2012)
2. EARTH AFIRE (2013)

3. EARTH AWAKENS (Not yet released)
20. SHADOWS ALIVE (TBA. Not yet released)
----------------------

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screaminglemon
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I have thought about this a bit more while re-reading the series and have come up with a new order that I think makes sense for newcomers.

If you are new to Ender's Game, I suggest this order:

1. ENDER'S GAME (1985)
* *MAZER IN PRISON (2005) (Appears in Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show 2008)
* *THE POLISH BOY (2002) (Appears in FIRST MEETINGS 2002)
* *TEACHERS PEST (2003) (Appears in FIRST MEETINGS 2002(Not present in 2002 version of book))
* *CHEATER (Oct 2006) (Appears in Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show 2008)
* *PRETTY BOY (Mar 2006) (Appears in Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show 2008)
2. ENDER'S SHADOW (Sep 1999)
3. SHADOW OF THE HEGEMON (2001)
4. SHADOW PUPPETS (Aug 2002)
5. SHADOW OF THE GIANT (2005)
6. SHADOWS IN FLIGHT (Jan 2012)
7. EARTH UNAWARE (Jul 2012)
8. EARTH AFIRE (2013)
9. EARTH AWAKENS (Not yet released)
10. ENDER IN EXILE (2008)
* *INVESTMENT COUNSELOR (May 1999) (Appears in FIRST MEETINGS 2002)
11. SPEAKER FOR THE DEAD (1986)
12. XENOCIDE (1991)
13. CHILDREN OF THE MIND (1996)
14. SHADOWS ALIVE (Not yet released)

0. A WAR OF GIFTS: AN ENDER STORY (2007) <Read during December.>

*(short story)

Here is my reasoning for this order. There are several arcs in this series. Earth, Ender, Shadow, and Speaker arcs. Enders Game is the best introduction to this universe so should come first. If you start with some others, you may spoil some plot twists. After Enders Game you can read the short story prequels. They work just as well before Enders Shadow as they would before Enders Game. Now comes the parrallel novel Enders Shadow. The rest of the Shadow series comes quite natuarally after this. Now I say to start the Earth series because Giant has such a powerful ending and Exile will bring us back to the timeline of Hegemon so starting Exile directly after Giant doesnt give you the time to fully digest everything in Giant. Shadows in Flight doest have this same problem because its short (at least the abridged ebook is (why the hell would anyone abridge an ebook!? No wonder the publishing industry is dying)) and it kind of reads like an epilogue to Giant, while Exile is like a prologue to the Speaker arc. So the Earth books go here, they really are quite exciting. Then Exile will bridge the gap between the shadow and speaker arcs. Jump into the future with the Speaker books and then Shadows Alive hopefully will tie everything up.

Where the future Fleet School books will fall in this list is anybodys guess.

Ender in Exile can come before Shadows in Flight but as I said above, I concider Flight to be an epilogue to Giant and works quite well in that light. Actually, I have no idea where Shadows in flight falls chronologically because most of the book takes place at near light speed. All we can know, is that it falls somewhere between Shadow of the Giant and Shadows Alive (I assume). So once Shadows Alive is released, I may change this list and put Flight between Children of the Mind and Shadows Alive.

**A WAR OF GIFTS, in my opinion, can and should be skipped all together. This is why I labeled it number 0. The story focuses on a brand new character, Zeck, who we've never seen before and will never see again. It does not push the series along in any way nor does it give further insight into established characters. It really does not fit into any of the story arcs and is simply a christmas story, so if you insist on reading it then forget about where it falls chronologically, and just pick it up in December. One thing I should mention, Ender in Exile makes a passing refference to War of Gifts when Ender mentions someone he talked to "during that whole flap about sinterklaas day back in battle school". Thats it.


If you prefer a somewhat chronological order... (The timeline for this series is rather complicated due to relativistic effects of near light speed travel and the fact that several books cover identical time periods.)


1. EARTH UNAWARE
2. EARTH AFIRE
3. EARTH AWAKENS (Not yet released)
* *MAZER IN PRISON (2005) (Appears in Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show 2008)
* *THE POLISH BOY (2002) (Appears in FIRST MEETINGS 2002)
* *TEACHERS PEST (2003) (Appears in FIRST MEETINGS 2002(Not present in 2002 version of book))
* *CHEATER (Oct 2006) (Appears in Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show 2008)
* *PRETTY BOY (Mar 2006) (Appears in Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show 2008)
4. ENDER'S GAME
0. A WAR OF GIFTS: AN ENDER STORY (2007)
5. ENDER'S SHADOW
6. SHADOW OF THE HEGEMON
7. SHADOW PUPPETS
8. SHADOW OF THE GIANT
9. SHADOWS IN FLIGHT
10. ENDER IN EXILE
* *INVESTMENT COUNSELOR (Appears in FIRST MEETINGS)
11. SPEAKER FOR THE DEAD
12. XENOCIDE
13. CHILDREN OF THE MIND
14. SHADOWS ALIVE (Not yet released)


*Short story.


If you prefer to read in order they were published...

1. ENDER'S GAME (1985)
2. SPEAKER FOR THE DEAD (1986)
3. XENOCIDE (1991)
4. CHILDREN OF THE MIND (1996)
5. *INVESTMENT COUNSELOR (May 1999) (Appears in FIRST MEETINGS 2002)
6. ENDER'S SHADOW (Sep 1999)
7. SHADOW OF THE HEGEMON (2001)
8. SHADOW PUPPETS (Aug 2002)
9. *THE POLISH BOY (2002) (Appears in FIRST MEETINGS 2002)
10. *TEACHERS PEST (2003) (Appears in FIRST MEETINGS 2002(Not present in 2002 version of book))
11. SHADOW OF THE GIANT (2005)
12. *MAZER IN PRISON (2005) (Appears in Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show 2008)
13. *PRETTY BOY (Mar 2006) (Appears in Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show 2008)
14. *CHEATER (Oct 2006) (Appears in Orson Scott Card's InterGalactic Medicine Show 2008)
15. A WAR OF GIFTS: AN ENDER STORY (2007)
16. ENDER IN EXILE (2008)
17. SHADOWS IN FLIGHT (Jan 2012)
18. EARTH UNAWARE (Jul 2012)
19. EARTH AFIRE (2013)

?. EARTH AWAKENS (Not yet released)
?. SHADOWS ALIVE (Not yet released)
----------------------

***I left out some of the short stories because they were incorporated into full books.
ENDERS STOCKING (2007)(Appears in A WAR OF GIFTS)
ENDERS HOMECOMING (2008)(Appears in ENDER IN EXILE)
A YOUNG MAN WITH PROSPECTS (2007)(Appears in ENDER IN EXILE)
ENDER IN FLIGHT (2008)(Appears in ENDER IN EXILE)
THE GOLD BUG (2007)(Appears in ENDER IN EXILE)

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millernumber1
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I'd recommend someone read both Ender's Game and Ender's Shadow, then depending on which ending intrigues them more (not which book, because the Speaker series is substantially different from Ender's Game, but does logically follow from the ending), read the next three in that sequence, then read the other trilogy. I'd say fit in short stories, the prequels, Ender in Exile and Shadows in Flight whenever you feel like it after that (though I think reading Shadows in Flight immediately after Shadow of the Giant would be pretty powerful, though I've not actually done that yet).

Also, just a note for clarification: "Ender's Stocking" is actually at least two thirds longer than the piece that was incorporated into A War of Gifts. And substantially better by that much as well!

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vineyarddawg
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I stand by my original stance of reading in order of publication, but hey, whatever floats one's boat is fine for them! :-)

I like following along the author's journey that he is taking as he expands the characters about which he's writing. Perhaps more to the point, though, I think the inconsistencies in the story timelines stick out more obviously if you read the stories chronologically or, as is the case in the above list, more or less storyline-ologically. (Hooray, creating new words!)

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millernumber1
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Those inconsistencies definitely stand out more - but even publication order can't change that. Shadow of the Giant and Ender in Exile have a massive contradiction in the way Peter and the writing of The Hegemon relate to each other, and they were consecutive books.
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vineyarddawg
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quote:
Originally posted by millernumber1:
Those inconsistencies definitely stand out more - but even publication order can't change that. Shadow of the Giant and Ender in Exile have a massive contradiction in the way Peter and the writing of The Hegemon relate to each other, and they were consecutive books.

Definitely... the major inconsistencies do stand out regardless of reading order. I think the thing that would bother me even more than that, though, is how the characters go back to calling the Formics "Buggers" in the 11th book I've read (if I go by the order screaminglemon suggested). If we've established that "bugger" is a pejorative term, even an epithet that is not appropriate in polite company, why would so many people (including Ender himself) keep using that term? And this is 3,000 years after the Xenocide, when the Formics are sympathetic figures. There would be no reason for people to use the epithet anymore.

And in a purely chronological order (the second list screaminglemon made), the "bugger" thing makes even less sense. If they were "Hormigas" first and then "Formics" officially from the start for most of humanity, how did "bugger" come into use? And it would make no sense in Ender's Game that Peter and Ender would play "Buggers and Astronauts." To use the most direct analogy, kids 30 years ago played "Cowboys and Indians," not "Cowboys and (insert any offensive epithet for Native Americans here)." The game would have been called "Formics and Astronauts."

(Can you tell that this is my soapbox? :-) )

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mahfoud dehbine
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(Post Removed by JanitorBlade. Leaving the link description in because what....)

smoking weed while pregnant.

[ December 30, 2013, 08:26 AM: Message edited by: JanitorBlade ]

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