Ender’s Game

25 YA Novels Everyone — Even Adults — Should Read

It’s a truism that kids’ books aren’t just for kids. Franchises like Harry Potter and The Hunger Games wouldn’t be nearly as successful if adults weren’t packing into theaters along with teens and tweens, and besides, the stigma against teen lit is so passé. YA is a rich, fascinating, and constantly evolving subset of literature, and it speaks volumes about the values literature passes on to subsequent generations. That said, here are 25 of the best books and series whose appeal endures even for those whose ages don’t end in “-teen”; some are eternal classics, some personal favorites. All are… Read More

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‘Ender’s Game’ Strips Out the Book’s Homophobia — But Also Its Emotional Resonance

Look: If your idea of a good time is to spend two hours being bombarded with the best in computer-generated imagery and a migraine generator of a score, then probably you will like Ender’s Game. And I do not cast aspersions on you for that! I, too, like things to blow up, and it seems to me an entire book of critical theory could be written in consideration of why it’s so fun to watch other (imaginary) people blow (imaginary) shit up. There is, after all, something more satisfying in it than actually blowing the shit up yourself, because you would, first of all, likely have to clean up the mess, which is another way of saying there would be repercussions for your momentary experience of stress release, and repercussions rather dampen catharsis.

That said, even on the scale of shit-blowing-up movies, Ender’s Game is not a terribly good one. … Read More

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What’s On at Flavorpill: The Links That Made the Rounds In Our Office

Today at Flavorpill, we watched a video featuring Nathan Fillion in a doctor’s outfit, some puppets, and Neil Patrick Harris’ trouser weasel (don’t worry — it’s not as dirty as it sounds). We were thrilled to hear that Katheryn Bigelow’s Zero Dark Thirty nabbed the National Board of Review’s Best Film honor. … Read More

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Required Reading: Dystopic Books Where Kids Meet Tragic Fates

There’s a reason why books like the Hunger Games, the film version of which is expected to shatter box-office records when it premieres this week, are so immensely popular – adolescent and prepubescent readers just love dystopia stories, where the fate of a totalitarian-governed people rests entirely on the shoulders of one kid. Isn’t that what it feels like to be going through puberty, after all? One day you’re a child, and the next day these weird things are happening to you and everyone tells you that it’s normal and you totally don’t buy it for a second?

Well, it just so happens that there are a lot of other novels out there in which horrible stuff happens to a whole bunch of children, which we guess is supposed to be some metaphor for society’s corrupting influence, or something. And don’t worry, they’re not all tragic and depressing! Well, okay, most of them are. But a lot of them are quite good! Check out our picks for kids and adults who are looking for some Hunger Games-like reading material, after the jump. … Read More

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The Morning’s Top 5 Pop Culture Stories

1. Soon-to-be retired filmmaker Steven Soderbergh wasted no time lining up a replacement project for The Man From U.N.C.L.E.; Vulture reports that he plans to shoot The Bitter Pill, a pharmapsychology thriller, in the brief window he has before beginning work on his final project, a Liberace biopic called Behind the Candelabra.

2.… Read More

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10 Fictional Games We'd Really Like to Play

Now that Labor Day has come and gone, it seems like the months for playing games are over — it’s time to hunker down and get serious as the weather gets colder. Not so! Even as the real life days get shorter and we’re forced inside, we can still live vicariously through our favorite fictional characters, whose games are never threatened by weather or sleepiness. There are about a million fictional games, documented in all mediums and genres, and though some of them have blossomed into a certain kind of reality — as you probably know, Muggle Quidditch is now a thing, as is the 3d chess from Star Trek — most remain just out of our reach. But we have hope! Click through to see our list of games and sports from literature, film, TV and comics that we’d like to play in real life, and let us know if we’ve missed any of your favorite fictional pastimes in the comments. … Read More

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The Morning’s Top 5 Pop Culture Stories

1. In case you somehow managed to miss it earlier today, here’s the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s first public kiss as husband and wife. It actually looks more exciting in the photo than it did watching it live. [via Pop Eater]

2. Mad Men star January Jones — who plays one of… Read More

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Literary Mixtape: Ender Wiggin

If you’ve ever wondered what your favorite literary characters might be listening to while they save the world/contemplate existence/get into trouble, or hallucinated a soundtrack to go along with your favorite novels, well, us too. But wonder no more! Here, we sneak a look at the hypothetical iPods of some of literature’s most interesting characters. What would be on the personal playlists of Holden Caulfield or Elizabeth Bennett, Huck Finn or Harry Potter, Tintin or Humbert Humbert? Something revealing, we bet. Or at least something danceable. Read on for a cozy reading soundtrack, character study, or yet another way to emulate your favorite literary hero. This week: The miniature hero of Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game, Ender Wiggin. … Read More

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