Overthinking It Book Club: Ender’s Game Introduction

Overthinking It Book Club LogoBen Adams and Matthew Wrather kick off the Overthinking It Book Club with an introduction to Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game.

→ Download the Ender’s Game Introduction

The Overthinking It Book Club

The book club is an experiment to see if we, the worldwide community of overthinkers, can have as much fun looking at a work of literature as we have when we talk about movies, TV shows, and music. Beginning the week of September 23, we’re going to spend a month and a half reading Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game in advance of the release of the film adaptation. It’s Ben’s favorite book and Matt has never read it before, so we’ll share the perspective both of a long-time and of a first-time reader. Here’s the plan.

Get The Book
We’d appreciate it if you used our Amazon affiliate link to buy Ender’s Game as a paperback or ebook. (Canadian and European readers can use these links.)

The Syllabus
Ben has divided the book into six roughly equal chunks. You’ll get the most out of the club if you read these sections by these dates:

  • Week 1 (September 23, 2013): Chapters 1-6
  • Week 2 (September 30, 2013): Chapters 7-8
  • Week 3 (October 7, 2013): Chapters 9-10
  • Week 4 (October 14, 2013): Chapters 11-12
  • Week 5 (October 21, 2013): Chapters 13-14
  • Week 6 (October 28, 2013): Chapter 15

The Forums
For our discussion, we’re going to use a special section in the Overthinking It Forums. Friday before each section begins, we’ll open up a forum for the coming week with some study questions to get our discussion started. As you read over the weekend, you can answer our questions in the week’s forum, start your own discussion topics there, and chime in on discussions that others have started. Everything up to and including the week’s reading is fair game for discussion—but if you’ve read the book, no spoilers for what is to come! (Maybe we’ll open up a special forum for those.)

The Podcast
Sometime mid-week, we’ll release a podcast where Ben, Matt, and other Overthinking It writers. We’ll talk over the week’s reading, address some of the study questions, and highlight our favorite discussions from the forums.

And more…
This is the inaugural effort for the book club, so we’re open to suggestions. Google Hangout videos? Guest commentators? Research and background on the author? We’re up for anything — and not just anything within reason. I mean, this is Overthinking It, and we’re gonna start subjecting some literature to a level of scrutiny… it probably doesn’t deserve.

Podcast feed and other sundries to come

14 Comments on “Overthinking It Book Club: Ender’s Game Introduction”

  1. Mike #

    Hey, I’m wondering if any of you guys have read this critique on the morals promoted by Ender’s Game and how Ender has no responsibility for his murderous actions. http://www4.ncsu.edu/~tenshi/Killer_000.htm

     
    • Matthew Wrather #

      Hi, Mike — it’s definitely something we’re going to examine as we go through the book in September and October.

       
  2. Zoe #

    I love this idea and I am super stoked about listening on. Is there a way you guys can cut down on the audio breaking up? Some of the commentary was really hard to understand because of the audio quality.

     
    • Ben Adams #

      Zoe- That one’s my fault! I solemnly swear that for the next podcast I will a) Get a better microphone, b) Make sure that no one in the house is streaming Netflix at the same time (like there was for this one) and c) Make sure that I have my head straight forward with my chin ducked down.

       
      • Zoe #

        Thanks Ben! I love all this podcast and am looking forward to the book club.

         
      • Erigion #

        *Implying that he’s our commanding officer*

        Not that there’s anything wrong with that, sir.

         
        • Ben Adams #

          YES. That was a pretty deep-cut reference, so I’m happy it did not go unnoticed.

           
          • Erigion #

            Ender’s Game is one of my favorite books. I reread every few years so hopefully there aren’t too many deep cuts I’ll miss.

            By the way, any plans on doing anything with Ender’s Shadow?

             
  3. Phizzled #

    I love Ender’s Game because no matter how old I get, I’ll always want to grow up to be a child prodigy.
    When I was in college, before the SAT score range changed, there was a chart correlating favorite books (according to Facebook) to SAT scores. Enders game represented a portion of the top quartile, which I’ve always associated with the desire to have always been special and noteworthy. Other options for that quartile were things like Cather in the Rye, The Prince, and likely some staggering work of heartbreaking genius that I never had the patience to read.
    That’s all. I look forward to hearing more book club.

     
    • Matthew Wrather #

      Giftedness in children, and how we think about giftedness in children vs. the abilities of adults, should definitely be part of the conversation.

       
  4. Dan Alt #

    Not to dissuade anyone from lining OTI’s coffers, but can I STRONGLY urge folks to acquire their copies of the books used or from a library? OSC is a reprehensible homophobe, despite the fact that he wrote this truly amazing book, and there’s no need for him to see a cent. Just give OTI some money directly if you want to.

    It kills me, but for the same reason, I don’t plan to watch the Ender’s Game movie until after the man is dead.

     
    • Zoe #

      I cannot agree with you more. I got the audiobook from my library and donated the money I would have used to buy the book to a LGBTQ youth org.

       
  5. Wiggin #

    can’t find the discussion on the forum; has there been an update?

     
    • Matthew Wrather #

      Nice username. :)

      The book club opens in earnest on September 20 with the first forums.