Ender is a young precocious boy who has been identified by the government of the future as one who might grow up to be a military commander in the impending war with the aliens who have already invaded twice. So at the age of six he is removed from his family and sent to the space camp where he learns all sorts of military strategy, etc. I suppose it is the "etc" that is the real story.
It really is a very engaging book. I read through it in just a few evenings on the kindle. There are some very satisfying twists at the end. But it is not the plot that intrigued me most. I read it as an indictment of the military mindset. Of course the threat is very real, and something must be done. But for someone whose only tool is a hammer, every problem looks a nail. The military tears down Ender and builds him up to be the perfect military commander. Ender realizes this but is powerless to do anything about it. One of the most insightful and profound moments is when Ender confesses that he is such a good commander because he has the uncanny ability to empathize with the enemy, to think like they think. His dilemma is that once you come to empathize with someone, you don't really want to destroy them. Perhaps our military types would benefit from a little more empathy.
Thanks kids. It was a good read. I hope you'll read more like it.