Posts Tagged ‘Ender’s Game’

Five Things I Learned Co-Writing Prequels to Ender’s Game

If you were to ask me to list my five favorite novels of all time, I’d probably give a slightly different answer every year. I’m always discovering something new and glorious that blows my mind and leaves me in a giddy state of wonder. But one book that will never leave that list is Ender’s Game. In fact, it’s currently perched there at the number one spot, and I doubt anything will ever unseat it.

I’m not alone in this. For millions of readers, reading Ender’s Game was a transformative experience. It taught us that characters in a book don’t have to feel like characters in a book. They can feel like real, genuine friends.

That was my experience, anyway. Ender and Valentine and Bean and Dink. It’s like I knew these kids and felt a connection to them. Our hearts were knit together, as the saying goes.

So when Orson Scott Card invited me to join him in writing prequel novels to Ender’s Game, I was a little gun shy. I worried that fans would be expecting another Ender’s Game and that if our novels didn’t transform them and wow them as much as the original, they’d crinkle their noses and hate me for life.

Remember when George Lucas announced that he was going to make The Phantom Menace? I went fanboy bonkers. Another Star Wars movie? Glory hallelujah! I couldn’t believe it. I’m going to sit in a theater again and have an experience just like I had watching the originals.

And then the movie came out and it was, um, less than what I had hoped.

Is this the curse of all prequels, I wondered.

Scott Card put my mind at ease reminding me that we weren’t writing Ender’s Game. That isn’t the goal. This is something different.

So I dived in, and learned quite a bit along the way . . . (more…)

EARTH AWAKENS – the latest Ender book is out

Today we release EARTH AWAKENS (UK | ANZ) the third novel in the stunning First Formic Wars series. Co-written by Orson Scott Card and Aaron Johnston, it tells what happened in the run up to the events in the bestselling classic novel ENDER’S GAME.

I love this series – it’s just so readable. And not just for all those people who are already big fans of the Ender books. It also works as a fast-paced science fiction adventure in itself. The story just whizzes by and the action doesn’t let up at any point. It’s fascinating to see how humanity’s strategies develop in our first hostile encounter with an alien race.

This latest book has already been receiving some very high praise, with Publishers Weekly claiming:

‘This breakneck thriller is a dark and lively addition to the Enderverse’

Check out the copy below, and look out for EARTH AWAKENS in stores now.


It is one hundred years before the events of Ender’s Game. Tens of millions are dead in China as the invading Formics scour the landscape and gas cities with a lethal alien chemical. Young Mazer Rackham and the Mobile Operations Police scramble to find a counteragent, while asteroid miner Victor Delgado infiltrates the alien ship in near-Earth orbit.

Victor needs to find a way to seize the ship and end the war, but he’ll need a small strike force of highly skilled soldiers to pull it off. In this last-ditch effort to save what’s left of humanity, Mazer Rackham and his team may be just the men for the job . . .

ENDER’S GAME – get your hands on the film edition

The time is almost upon us.

The film version of ENDER’S GAME – one of the most popular and critically acclaimed science fiction novels ever written – will be out in the UK on 25th October .

To celebrate, we’re very pleased to present the final cover for our Orbit film tie-in edition – available from 3rd October.

Starring Harrison Ford as Colonel Hyrum Graff, Ben Kingsley as Mazer Rackham and Asa Butterfield as the child prodigy Ender himself, we have very high hopes for this movie. The trailer looks spectacular – check out the latest extended version if you haven’t seen it yet.

You can also keep up to date with news on the film on the Ender’s Game Facebook page.

And if you haven’t read the worldwide bestselling, award-winning book behind this film yet, read a free extract to find out what you’re missing.


On co-authoring a novel set in the world of ENDER’S GAME . . .

EARTH UNAWARE, book one of the First Formic War, by Orson Scott Card and Aaron Johnston, set 100 years before Ender's Game, which will be released as a major motion picture in October 2013 starring Harrison FordToday sees the release of EARTH UNAWARE (UK|ANZ) and EARTH AFIRE (UK|ANZ), books 1 and 2 of The First Formic War, set 100 years before ENDER’S GAME.

Orson Scott Card co-authored these novels with Aaron Johnston – a bestselling author and associate producer on the upcoming Ender’s Game movie. To celebrate the release, we asked Aaron what it’s like to write within such a well-known and much loved world . . .

When Orson Scott Card asked me to coauthor the prequel novels to his science-fiction classic Ender’s Game, my first two thoughts were: (1) Wow, what an incredible honor, and (2) You better not screw this up, Johnston, or fans will hunt you down and toilet paper your house.

We fans can be a prickly lot. Especially when it comes to stories that hold special significance to us, as Ender’s Game does to millions of readers. I’ve read Ender’s Game more times than any other work of fiction, and whenever anyone asks me for a book recommendation, the first words out of my mouth are always, “Have you read Ender’s Game?”

For me, Ender’s Game was the first book I ever read wherein the characters didn’t feel like characters at all but rather like friends and kindred spirits. Bean, Dink, Shen, Valentine, Ender. They were all so believable and honest and distinct that when I stepped into their world, my own world melted away.

Earth Afire, book two of the First Formic War, by Orson Scott Card and Aaron Johnston, set 100 years before Ender's Game, which will be released as a major motion picture in October 2013 starring Harrison FordI don’t presume to suggest that our books will have the same effect on readers as Ender’s Game does. Only Ender’s Game can produce the experience it provides. But I do hope that our novels will feel like they belong in the Ender universe. That was my goal from the beginning. “If we do this,” I told Scott, “I want it to feel like an Orson Scott Card novel.” And by that I mean: when fans read the book, I didn’t want them to distinguish between the parts I had written from the parts Scott had written. I wanted it to feel seamless.

That’s a lofty goal, I know. Only OSC can write like OSC, after all. But I felt as if we owed it to fans to provide a new and exciting adventure story that also felt like a member of the Ender universe.

In fact, it was so important to me that the books sounded and felt like other OSC novels that before I started writing each day, I would usually pick up an OSC book and read a chapter or two just to get my mind in a place that spoke in the voice and rhythm of Orson Scott Card. Scott has a gift for writing in third-person, limited point-of-view that allows for deep characterization without abandoning the pace. I’m not conceited enough to suggest that I do it as well as he does, but I certainly tried. The biggest compliment I have received thus far is when one fan called the series “classic Orson Scott Card.”

But of course this is a collaboration. And since Orson Scott Card rarely collaborates with other authors, fans naturally have a lot of questions. What follows are my answers to the questions I most often hear. (more…)

How did they film the zero G fight scenes for the ENDER’S GAME movie?

The teaser poster for the up-and-coming Ender's Game movie, starring Harrison Ford and Asa Butterfield, and based ont he award-winnign science fiction novel by Orson Scott CardOne of the coolest things in Orson Scott Card’s novel ENDER’S GAME – and likely one of the most difficult things to film – are the combat scenes that take place in the zero gravity battle room. So just how did they go about filming them for the Ender’s Game movie?

There’s a great exclusive interview here on i09 from Asa Butterfield (star of Hugo and The Boy In the Striped Pajamas), who plays Ender Wiggin himself.

It’s a very cool insight into the challenges of filming a scifi movie, e.g.:

“When you’re in the harnesses to stop yourself from falling at the waist, which is where they’re connected, you have to be tensed up. So keeping actions smooth whilst having your whole body completely tensed is surprisingly difficult. Meanwhile you’re saying your lines . . .”

You don’t get those issues filming a rom-com!

If you’re based in the UK and want to keep up with all the Ender’s Game film news, there is now both an Ender’s Game UK Facebook page and Ender’s Game UK Twitter account (@EndersGameFilm) that you can follow, along with the Ender’s Game Official Tumblr.

EARTH AFIRE, book two of the First Formic War by Orson Scott Card and Aaron Johnston, a prequel series to the classic novel ENDER' S GAME - now a major motion pictureAndEARTH UNAWARE if you’re keen to find out more back story to ENDER’S GAME, and the conflict that spawned the battle school, we’ll soon be publishing two explosive Orson Scott Card books telling of mankind’s first contact with the alien race – EARTH UNAWARE (UK | ANZ) and EARTH AFIRE (UK | ANZ), books 1 and 2 in The First Formic Wars.

100 years before ENDER’S GAME came EARTH UNAWARE

In anticipation of the upcoming film based on the classic science fiction novel ENDER’S GAME (UK | ANZ), we’re extremely excited to announce the UK acquisition of a brand new series set in the same world. See the covers released here for the first time . . .

EARTH UNAWARE, book one of the First Formic War by Orson Scott Card and Aaron Johnston, a prequel series to the classic novel ENDER' S GAME - now a major motion picture

EARTH AFIRE, book two of the First Formic War by Orson Scott Card and Aaron Johnston, a prequel series to the classic novel ENDER' S GAME - now a major motion picture










The First Formic Wars series begins with EARTH UNAWARE and continues with EARTH AFIRE. It’s set 100 years before the events of ENDER’S GAME.

Before Ender Wiggin is born, before the battle school has been built, mankind is about to have its first encounter with an alien race. The Formics are coming to Earth, and things are not about to go well . . .

Not only does this series give some fantastic back story to the tale of ENDER’S GAME and what happened in the first conflict with the Formics, this also happens to be an exceptionally good, space-battle-filled adventure all of its own. The series has had some great reviews in already:

‘A standout tale of sf adventure that gives Ender series fans fascinating backstory to the classic Ender’s Game’ LIBRARY JOURNAL

‘The story progresses nimbly, with plenty of tension and excitement and Card’s usual well-developed characters’ KIRKUS REVIEWS

‘Literate prose and superlative characterisation . . . excellent’ BOOKLIST

Both of these books are out very soon at the start of June – so not long to wait. They’re a perfect way to fill the time before the film is released in October. . . (Hurry up already movie!)

The series is co-written by Orson Scott Card, the author of ENDER’S GAME, and Aaron Johnston – a New York Times bestselling author, Marvel comic writer, and associate producer on the upcoming ENDER’S GAME movie. Look below for the blurb for EARTH UNAWARE and check out both books on 4th June 2013. (more…)

ENDER’S GAME film poster and new look Ender covers!

Film poster for ENDER'S GAME, a film based onthe classic science fiction novel by Orson Scott CardIn case you haven’t heard (. . . you’ve probably heard . . . ), there’s a film version of Orson Scott Card’s classic science fiction novel ENDER’S GAME coming out soon. It will be released in the UK on 25th October this year.

Very excitingly, a teaser poster has just been unveiled! It’s been posted on the official Ender’s Game film Tumblr.

Since the book almost always pops up in those “top 10 science fiction books of all time” lists, you can imagine how many people are eager to see how director Gavin Hood will present this tale of one boy and his destiny among the stars . . .

Things are at least looking promising, given that it’s starring the likes of Harrison Ford (STAR WARS, INDIANA JONES), Asa Butterfield (HUGO) and Ben Kingsley (SCHINDLER’S LIST, SHUTTER ISLAND and IRON MAN 3).

Ender's Game CHILDREN OThe classic and award-winning science fiction novel ENDER'S GAME by Orson Scott Card - soon to be released as a movie starring Harrison FordYou should also check out the very cool battle school logos that got posted on io9 recently.

Anticipation is certainly building! So to celebrate the upcoming film release, we’re releasing new editions of all the books in the Ender Saga.

To the left you can see the new edition of ENDER’S GAME (UK | ANZ) we released recently. And please see the new look below for the exceptional and award-winning follow-ups: SPEAKER FOR THE DEAD (UK | ANZ), XENOCIDE (UK | ANZ) and CHILDREN OF THE MIND (UK | ANZ).

SPEAKER FOR THE DEAD, book 2 in the Ender Saga by Orson Scott Card following Ender's Game - soon to be released as a movie starring Harrison Ford XENOCIDE, book 3 in the Ender Saga by Orson Scott Card following Ender's Game - soon to be released as a movie starring Harrison FordCHILDREN OF THE MIND, book 4 in the Ender Saga by Orson Scott Card following Ender's Game - soon to be released as a movie starring Harrison Ford








These new-look editions will be released on 2nd May this year. Look below to see them in their full glory!

And if you’re a big Ender fan, don’t forget that there’s also an omnibus edition of the parallel story to Ender’s Game, THE SHADOW SAGA (UK | ANZ) available now. (more…)

The Shadow Saga omnibus and Ender’s Game film update

Exciting news for fans of award-winning SF author Orson Scott Card: his bestselling Shadow Saga is now available in a single volume!


The first novel, ENDER’S SHADOW, runs parallel to Card’s classic novel ENDER’S GAME [UK | ANZ], while the subsequent three books all explore the roles of various Battle School recruits following the end of the intergalactic war, as various factions struggle for world domination.

ENDER’S GAME  is currently being developed into a major Hollywood film, featuring Harrison Ford, Asa Butterfield and Ben Kingsley. The movie will also include elements and events from ENDER’S SHADOW.

Orson Scott Card himself recently visited the movie set and was hugely impressed with what he saw from the actors – “It was wonderful to see how Ford and Butterfield responded to each other’s timing. It was such a delicate dance – and they worked perfectly together.”

Card talks at length about his trip – and also gives his thoughts on The Avengers, Harry Potter and the work of Joss Whedon – in this recent article.

The film of ENDER’S GAME is set for release in November 2013.