What's the recommended reading order of the Ender Wiggin books?

  • The series that starts with Ender's Game has a parallel series that starts with Ender's Shadow. The graph of the timeline is... well... complicated.

    Ender Series Timeline

    Does it make more sense if you read them in the order they were first published, or if you try to read them in the chronological order of the story?

    Image Reference: Ender's Game (series)

    I'd start with Ender's Game, then branch out and down from there. You'll prolly lose interest soon after. None really live up to Ender's Game.

    Speaker for the Dead, Xenocide and Children of Mind are very different from the other books in the series. They only really depend on Ender's Game and they could even be very enjoyable if you didn't like Ender's Game. (And people who like Ender's Game sometimes don't like the Speaker trilogy).

    @DampeS8N: Ender's Game was one of my favorite books growing up and I recently read it again after more than 20 years. It still holds up. It's such a high point to start from that I believe you when you say none of the others live up to it.

    Of course, there are also people who like BOTH the Ender's Game, AND Shadow books, AND Speaker/Xenocide/Children trilogy. I would not recommend prejudicing your mind against any of them just because someone else's subjective opinion is so. +1 for the graph!

    Wow. I've read the main Ender series, and a good chunk of the Shadow series, but I didn't realize any of these other books existed!

    I'm one of those who likes Ender's game AND the Speaker/Xenocide/Children trilogy.. And I *like* the Shadow books.. But I find that they take away from the Ender books, by subtracting from his significance by giving Bean a retconned greater import. I still like them, but find them distasteful in some ways.

    @Bill - you may want to update your post with the latest book(s) - e.g. `Shadows Alive`.

    I liked Ender's shadow a little bit more than Ender's game

    I would strongly recommend reading Ender's Game and Speaker for the Dead, then **pretending that all of the other books don't exist**.

    Not sure if you've seen my answer under all the rest of them, but it is frequently updated to include every novel, short story, and comic.

    See also the much later duplicate http://literature.stackexchange.com/q/28/139 "What order should I read the “Ender's game” series in?"

    @Valorum and miss shadow of the giant!?

  • thelsdj

    thelsdj Correct answer

    10 years ago

    As someone who has read every book I think the publishing order is the best order to read them in because it is the order the author added to the universe. They each build on everything published before them and if you read them in a different order you don't get the same build-up and sense of discovery you would get by having things you may have wondered about in earlier books be revealed in later ones.

    @BilltheLizard and thelsdj -to build on this recommendation (which I heartily agree with), if you can get your hands on thr original "Ender's Game" novelette from 1977, READ THAT FIRST.

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