My last review was of Ender’s Game: Battle School. I had s grudge against the creators leaving out Dragon Army from the story. Well, this story picks up right where it left off. Ender is promoted and given command of Dragon Army. The books picks up a quick pace while it covers the games that Ender must face while in command of Dragon Army. The images are all very well done. I think the art is better in this one then in Battle School, but the color direction is better in Battle School. It’s hard to get a visual sense that the scene has changed. In Battle School this was done with shifts in the color palette for the scene. The best scene depicted in this book is the fight between Ender and Bonzo in the showers. No nudity is shown, achieved with a carefully placed leg or steam from the shower, so don’t worry about that. In the middle of the book Ender is prompted to Command School. He meets Mazer and finds out more about the formics, but again all this feels rushed and so much is left out. If you didn’t read the novel you probably would not get a feel for how big of a figure Mazer is in the story and will miss out on the enormity of the situation when Mazer shows up in Enders room. Ender is still with his friends in the end and together they fight to destroy the formics. The ending of the novel is completely left out. Where Ender and his friends are in a room waiting for the war to end. His meeting Valentine again and being shipped off to the colonies. These are minor points, but still detract from the overall story that was told in the novel. If you read the novel than this is a must read for fans of the Ender series.
Hardcover: 128 pages
Publisher: Marvel (March 24, 2010)
The art direction in this book is great. Each scene had its own color scheme which really gave you the feel that the environment changes from scene to scene. The most exciting part is seeing the scenes you remember from the novel. Some of the more dramatic pieces of art come out when showing the giant in the game. This was one scene that I could was better than my imagination. A small issue I had with the art was that sometimes they would leave characters eye’s completely undrawn. I think the effect was to make it look like the eye is in shadow, but it’s just disconcerting to see the character without an eye in one scene and with an eye in the next. The dialogue is short and to the point, but so much is left out. The comic heavily summarizes the novel, which is understandable. What I couldn’t understand is some of the choices that were made on what to leave out. For one, Dragon army and Enders time in it is completely left out. Other scenes that provide context for Enders connection to the other characters are left out. Petra shows up for a few pages and then is gone and there is no mention of Bean. This is a collection of 5 shorter comics, but I think they should have came out with another one just to cover Enders time in Dragon army as that was crucial to his development. I would have given this 3 stars instead of 4, but the nostalgia factor weighed heavily. It’s great to see the characters and scenes drawn out. But, if you haven’t read the novel this is not something you should pick up first unless you just want the cliff notes.