Ender’s Game Series

Cover of

5/5 stars

Let me start off by saying, these books are Science Fiction. BUT. Before you run away (all you girly girls out there…) if you have any love for the human race, for people different from you, for military tactics, history, or even child development, these are definitely books for you. Ender throws all preconceived ideas of science fiction out the door – it isn’t overwhelming and strange – it’s us, 100, 300, 1,000 years from now, struggling to face those who are different. It’s pretty self-explanatory so you don’t have to go into it as a science geek – in fact, the more open you are the better – but isn’t that just how books are?

In my opinion, and that’s just what this is, Ender is one of the most likable characters I’ve ever come across in any book. Born a third child in North Carolina in a generation that prohibits more than 2 children, Ender was sanctioned by the government to be a military commander before he was even conceived. True, they didn’t know that he would be great – in fact, no one is sure of that, but he’s still their best choice of defeating a race much stronger than ours. And it’s all chance (and maybe some skill) that he’ll live up to the government’s hopes.

Throughout the entire series, Orson Scott Card does a remarkable job of telling Ender’s story from many different angles – the government, Ender’s own, and that from his family back in America. And Ender’s just the Third – his two older siblings are in no way less brilliant than he is – more in some cases.

Overall, I’ve found that the Ender Series has been read in universities as required reading, in High Schools, and for pleasure as well. It was originally conceived as a story by Card in the 70s, and has stood the test of time. Guys in particular love these books because they are intensely wrapped around military tactics, command strategies, and a rather hard look on life from the perspective of a young boy. However, that doesn’t mean girls don’t like it too – those who can handle the depth and intensity of the series are hardcore fans. So don’t let your notions of science fiction, or military history stop you from checking out these books – it’ll be well worth your time!

Crazy Love

Crazy Love. Recently, this book “Crazy Love” came across my desk. At theGreater Frederick Church of Christ, we are currently involved in a “Crazy Love” campaign for the next month. Crazy Love isn’t preachy, but just presents life in a way that is hard to argue with. Sometimes when we put stuff in perspective it makes so much more sense than leaving it out of context and alone. Oh yeah, it’s also a New York Times Bestseller…for those of you who only read “those kinds of books” 😉

So often we get bogged down in the every day worries of life – how we can get to work on time, how to avoid getting speeding tickets, how to get our kids to shut up and listen, how to get dinner on the table, relax, and somehow still get to bed on time to repeat it all the next day – we forget to look at the big picture. It seems intimidating. For those of us who grew up Christian, we can put it in a box, to open on Easter, or Christmas, and every other time we forget it as though it shouldn’t affect our every day lives. What we don’t understand is that sometimes, by simply letting go and realizing we aren’t always in control, and that life is so much shorter than we think it is, we actually end up on top if we trust in someone bigger and stronger than anyone we know.

As a history major, I’ve always appreciated the bible as an ironically accurate picture of the life of people living in the Fertile Crescent, Israel, Babylon, and even the Roman empire. People remain the same throughout all of time, and so does God. He’s the only constant thing. We might lose our jobs tomorrow, or our life the next day, but only one person actually knows when that will be, and how we will get through it. I’d challenge you if you agree or disagree with God, the bible, or even religion as a whole, to pick it up and see for yourself. We can’t logically disagree with something if we don’t know enough to back up that argument.

If you’re too scared or lazy to check out the book (as I’m sure some of you are 😉 ) then check out the website: http://crazylovebook.com/

Books Galore!

Books, books, books galore! Now I know what you’re thinking – Who reads anymore?? Well…I do. A lot. In college I took a 3 year break because frankly, reading historical novels and biographies was just SO much more exciting – or just rather time consuming… so alas, here I am. Reading once more.

When I was an excited youngster, I used to read an average of 1 1/2 books a day. And no, this wasn’t because I had no friends..I swear! With all the health issues I had growing up, it was either that or watch mindless tv. So you can guess what my parents chose! It paid off though, gave me great insight into human nature, intellect, and various points of view.

Because it might be the history buff in me, but reading isn’t obsolete yet! You can watch all the TV shows or movies you want, but when it comes down to it, they are much less rewarding than opening a good book – notice I didn’t just say ANY book. Reading for the sake of reading, and reading to gain insight are polar opposites. You can read all the chick flick books you want, but unless you have an open mind, it’s all for nothing. If you continually challenge yourself either in the words or contexts of the stories, you’ll see a much greater sense of life.

So in college I gave up reading for fun because I was so overwhelmed with reading for school. Books like April Blood about the Medici plot, and Uncle Tom’s Cabin cluttered my shelves instead of Ender’s Game, Harry Potter, Mary Queen of Scots, the other Boleyn Girl…I could go on and on. While it was good to get outside my comfort zone, I find that choosing my own books is much more rewarding. Not in the sense that they’re easier reads, because most of them aren’t, but I find that I enjoy books with good, strong characters who are multi-dimensional. While reading a book for its historical significance is great, I find that if the characters are complex enough, most books will tell about society through them instead of though a long, lectured narrative.

I’ve read and have favorite books in almost every genre imaginable. Whether it’s historical, fantasy, science fiction, or the classics, people are still the same. But continually worth learning from. Each time I read a book or if there are ones that I’ve read that I feel are worth passing on, I’ll let you know 🙂